Operation "Move Over": Police launch blitz ahead of winter - Diamond and Diamond Lawyers

Operation "Move Over": Police launch blitz ahead of winter

In an effort to keep emergency workers safe, Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) are prompting motorists to slow down and move over when they see a stopped emergency vehicle. In addition to the OPP, police forces, fire services and EMS in the Durham region, will be reminding drivers in a two-day awareness campaign dubbed “Operation Move Over” beginning on Monday.

According to the OPP, Section 159 (2)(3) of the Highway Traffic Act requires drivers to slow down and proceed with caution when passing an emergency vehicle parked on the side of the highway with its lights activated. If the highway has more than one lane, the law requires the driver to move over and leave one lane between their vehicle and the parked emergency vehicle if it can be done safely. Failure to do so can result in fines from $400 to $2,000 and three demerit points for a first offence.

This is not the first time the OPP has put forth educational efforts in the importance of moving over. Even after ten years of education efforts, the OPP have seen a steady increase in the number of “Move Over” charges it has laid against drivers since 2010. According to a July 2014 news release by the OPP, there have been over 11,000 charges on record since the law came into effect in 2013.

“With the higher volumes of traffic on long weekends, police and other emergency personnel respond to far more calls for service at the roadside, making it a particularly important time to move over a lane when able to do so safely,” said Chief Superintendent Chuck Cox, Provincial Commander of the OPP Highway Safety Division, in a press release.

The “Operation Move Over” campaign comes before the potentially dangerous winter months where conditions can often be hazy and dangerous for both drivers and emergency workers on the road. Officials are looking to promote the importance of keeping our emergency workers safe when they are responding to highway related emergencies.

While OPP and other emergency services will be focused on targeting those who fail to move over for emergency vehicles, police will also be looking for aggressive driving, distracted driving, impaired driving and seat belt safety.

It’s important to always remain aware, confident and safe while on the road. Moving over for emergency vehicles is not only enforced, but can save and protect lives. However, accidents are inevitable and if you find yourself in one, Diamond and Diamond Personal Injury Lawyers have the experience in helping accident victims and will get you the compensation that you deserve. If you’ve been injured, call us on our free injury hotline at 1-800-567-HURT (4878) orcontact us here

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