Attention Drivers: $75 Fines Await Those Ignoring Safety Rules

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In a bid to enhance road safety, Kansas Highway Patrol Officer, Capt. Candice Breshears has spearheaded a push for stricter legislation surrounding the state’s Move Over law.

The proposed changes, encapsulated in Senate Bill 142, aim to extend protection not only to emergency vehicles but to all disabled vehicles as well, marking a crucial shift in ensuring the safety of motorists and law enforcement personnel.

Capt. Candice Breshears recounts a harrowing incident where her patrol cruiser was struck by a semi-truck despite emergency lights being activated. This close call prompted her advocacy for a comprehensive amendment to the existing “Move Over” law.

Currently, Kansas law requires motorists to move over and provide a safety buffer for emergency vehicles, tow trucks, and maintenance vehicles. Failure to do so results in a $75 fine.

In response to increasing risks faced by stranded motorists, the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) amended the law to include all disabled vehicles. This includes those using indicators of distress such as flashing hazard lights, cones, flares, or reflector triangles.

Under Senate Bill 142, motorists failing to pass disabled vehicles safely are subject to a $75 fine for the first offense. Repeat offenses within five years escalate the fines tenfold, with a second offense carrying a $750 fine and a third offense resulting in a $1,000 penalty.

Capt. Breshears emphasizes the critical nature of complying with the law, stressing that a matter of feet or inches can be the difference between a safe traffic stop and a tragic incident. Troopers and law enforcement officers routinely face danger when working on the side of the road, making adherence to the Move Over law imperative.

Attention Drivers: $75 Fines Await Those Ignoring Safety Rules

Data from Joel Skelley, KDOT’s director of policy, reveals that nearly 700 accidents have occurred in the past four years due to passing drivers neglecting to move over for disabled vehicles. These statistics underscore the urgent need for stricter regulations and increased public awareness.

The proposed legislative changes serve as a clarion call for millions of drivers to change their behavior on the road. It is not merely about avoiding fines but fostering a safer driving culture that prioritizes the well-being of all road users. As the proposed amendments to the Move Over law in Kansas aim to protect all stranded motorists, drivers must be cognizant of the potential dangers on the road.

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The fines associated with non-compliance serve as a deterrent, but the overarching goal is to create a safer road environment for everyone. By heeding the warnings and embracing responsible driving practices, millions of motorists can contribute to a significant reduction in road accidents and tragedies.

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