The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) is planning another enforcement operation of the state’s Move Over/Slow Down law, which has seen some changes.

DPS troopers will be conducting a Move Over/Slow Down enforcement operation throughout the day tomorrow (Wednesday) in the Bryan District. The Department of Transportation will be participating in a non-enforcement capacity.

Originally passed in 2003, the law requires drivers to either move over or slow down when certain vehicles are stopped on the side of the road with their emergency lights on.

As a result of the 86th Legislative Session, there are new vehicles that drivers will need to be mindful of, in addition to police, fire, EMS, TxDOT, or tow trucks.  Starting this month, drivers will now need to move over or slow down for highway maintenance or construction vehicles under contract with TxDOT, utility service vehicles, and stationary solid waste or recycling vehicles.

The law specifically says drivers need to either vacate the lane closest to the vehicles stopped on the side of the road, or slow down 20 mph below the speed limit. If drivers cannot move over legally and safely, they should slow down.

Violators could be fined up to $200, or up to $500 if there is property damage. If violators cause bodily injury, they could be charged with a Class B misdemeanor, resulting in a maximum fine of $2,000 and possible jail time.

Last year, DPS issued more than 41,000 warnings and citations to drivers in violation of the law. Preliminary data this year shows approximately 17,300 warnings and citations have been issued.

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  1. Agree with Safe Driver. This is coming about mostly as a revenue increase for the DPS which takes orders from the state capitol. In these days of overcrowded highways circumstances make it next to impossible to move over. Many times this results in a car or cars nearly coming to a stop while waiting for a chance to get into the left lane. This will set the scene for a very possible multi vehicle pile up resulting in injuries and maybe deaths. This is a revenue grab at the expense of the public’s welfare, and until the state can catch up on much needed highway expansions drivers beware for your own safety and pocketbook. Don’t like it? You know who to call, the ones you may have voted for last election. Reap what you sow.

  2. In the mid 1960’s while teaching me to drive my Dad taught me to do this for any vehicle pulled off the road like this….just common sense. This appears to be an effort to simply remind folks of a good practice to use and mostly will be warnings. But, in 2003 when this law was passed, the first morning in affect there were hundreds of tickets written on Houston Freeways. Not warnings. Within a month I was stopped in a neighbor town who set up a “TRAP”. It was UT weekend with traffic everywhere. I could not move over and the traffic was moving well under the 20 mph less than posted. The extremely rude, cocky young officer didn’t even know the law. I did nothing wrong but got the only ticket I have in 40 years. Not an effort to protect but simply a hick town generating revenue…no good

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