NJ’s Move-Over Law: Dead cops make bad laws (Opinion)
Because we don’t have enough laws in New Jersey, a legislator wants to take one we already have and give it more teeth.
NJ’s “move-over” law was established nine years ago after State Police Trooper Marc Castellano was struck and killed in the line of duty ,on the side of the road, by a driver who did not move over.
It’s a silly law that requires a driver to move over when they see police, maintenance, tow truck and other emergency vehicles and personnel on the shoulder. Duh. No one is going to deliberately run into to someone on the side of a road. If you can move over safely, you probably will. But it’s not always safe to.
With this law, I notice a hazardous trend of drivers noticing the activity too late and panicking and stopping short or trying to move over too quickly. Plus, it is already difficult to enforce because the cops who would give you a ticket for not moving over are already occupied doing whatever they’re doing on the side of the road, which is why you have to move over in the first place!
Now, there’s a $100 to $500 fine for violating the law, but Assemblyman Eric Houghtaling (D-Monmouth) is sponsoring a bill which would impose two points as well.
We don’t need this law. It’s common driving sense to give room to people working in the side of the road. People who don’t move over are most likely not “ignoring” the law. Rather, they are being cautious. You can’t necessarily move over safely at all times.
A dead cop is sad. But a horrible tragedy doesn’t warrant a law that puts other drivers at risk and is almost impossible to enforce.
More from New Jersey 101.5: