Breaking News
More () »

AAA looks to expand Florida's 'move over' law to include all drivers

According to AAA, nearly 350 people are hit and killed outside a disabled car every year.

TAMPA, Fla. — AAA Auto Club Group is launching the "Move Over for Me" initiative in hopes of educating drivers about moving over for disabled cars on roadsides. 

Florida's current 'move over' law requires drivers to slow down and move over one lane for utility and municipal vehicles and tow trucks. It does not make drivers move over for any other disabled vehicles, even with hazard lights on. 

"If you have a disabled vehicle and you're stuck on the roadside, the state law right now does not protect just the average everyday driver on the roadside," AAA Spokesperson Mark Jenkins said in a news conference.

According to a survey from AAA, nearly a quarter of all drivers do not know 'move over' laws exist. Nationwide, AAA says nearly 350 people are hit and killed outside a disabled vehicle each year, adding that Florida had 112 deaths between 2016 and 2020. The only states with more fatalities were California with 281 deaths and Texas with 268 deaths. 

"Sometimes some of the folks that pass you, they see you, but don't bother to make an effort to switch lanes or give you that space that we need to be safe," Miguel Maldonado, a tow truck driver with AAA, said.

In an effort to spread awareness, AAA is sharing tips with drivers to protect roadside workers and other stranded drivers: 

For drivers: 

  • Remain alert by avoiding distractions and focusing on driving. 
  • Keep an eye out for emergency vehicles, including tow trucks. If you see one, move over one lane. If you can't move over, slow down to safely pass. 
  • Be a good passenger by identifying roadway issues and reminding the driver to slow down and move over. 
  • Watch for people on the roadside. 

For stranded motorists: 

  • Pull as far over on the shoulder as safely as possible to create more distance between your vehicle and passing traffic. 
  • Turn your hazard lights on. 
  • Call for assistance. 
  • Remain with your car as long as it is safe to do so. 
  • If you're getting out of your car, watch for oncoming traffic to find a good time to exit. Remain alert and close to your car. 
  • Avoid turning your back to traffic whenever possible.  

Eight states currently have laws that require drivers to move over for disabled vehicles. Jenkins says AAA's initiative will hopefully push Florida to make a change to its 'move over' law to include disabled vehicles. 

"If you do have a flat tire, if you do have engine trouble, if you're on the side of the Veteran's Expressway, it'd be nice if people would move over for you too," Jenkins said.  

RELATED: Driver under investigation for DUI in Largo crash, police say

RELATED: Why wait until October for Florida’s gas tax holiday? Data doesn’t support tourism claim

Before You Leave, Check This Out