Windsor, Ontario — July 28, 2015 — Despite ongoing efforts to raise public awareness, hundreds of Ontario drivers are guilty of ignoring the province’s Move Over law, according to the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP).
CBC News reports OPP have laid 763 charges so far this year due to non compliance of the 12-year-old legislation put in place to protect roadside workers.
Under the law, drivers must slow down and move to an adjacent lane if possible when passing a roadside emergency vehicle—including police cruisers, ambulances, and, with the recent passing of Bill 31, tow trucks—with their lights flashing.
Those in violation of the legislation risk fines ranging from $400 to $2,000 and three demerit points on first offence.
Ahead of the upcoming long weekend, with the anticipated increased traffic and more emergency vehicles on the road, OPP say they will be conducting an education and enforcement campaign on the law.
Late last year, the Ontario Provincial Police Association (OPPA) and the OPP launched a Move Over campaign to inform the public on the human costs of failing to slow down and move over for stopped emergency vehicles.
“Slowing down and moving over for any stopped emergency vehicle is not an option in Ontario, it is the law,” OPPA President Jim Christie said in a December 2014 release.
Similar efforts to raise awareness of the law have been made by the Canadian Automobile Association (CAA). Members of the organization are also strong supporters of the recent amendment to the province’s Highway Traffic Act and the Highway 407 East Act, 2012 to add tow truck drivers to the list of roadside workers protected under the legislation. Bill 31, the Making Ontario’s Roads Safer Act, passed third and final reading on June 2 at Toronto’s Queen’s Park.
To view the OPPA Public Service Announcements, please visit: youtube.com/user/OntProvPoliceAssoc.