Changes to Iowa's Move Over Law go into effect July 1

Published: Jun. 28, 2018 at 3:58 AM CDT
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Changes are coming to a law that requires drivers to move over or slow down for vehicles helping with accidents.

Starting July 1, all drivers must move over or at least slow down for all vehicles with flashing emergency lights.

Trooper Bob Conrad with the Iowa State Patrol showed us a video of a call he was on four years ago near Tiffin.

In it, you can see the flashing lights on the patrol car that's pulled off to the right, when all of a sudden a white truck dashes out, it slams into the back of the patrol car, narrowly missing another state trooper outside the car.

Trooper Conrad remembers hearing the crash.

"I was in the median running just about out of it in the other direction because when I hear tire squealing, in this job when you start to hear tires squeal, things happening, the biggest thing is you run away from the noise, I didn't even look back," he said.

The force of the blow knocks out the officer inside the patrol car.

Trooper Conrad says the officer was okay but now he's a big advocate of the Move Over Law.

Just last weekend a car hit an Iowa State Patrol car in Council Bluffs and demolished the back side.

The state trooper had minor injuries but it could have been must worse.

Iowa State Patrol says the original law was put in place to protect first respondents, tow truck operators, and road maintenance workers.

But now it will apply to any vehicle on the side of the road with flashing lights.

"We want to tell everybody always use your hazards, there's a reason that they have them in cars, that's to indicate hey there is a stranded vehicle, a vehicle that has some kind of distress or trouble, get those lights on. Help indicate to the motorist hey there's something going on up here, gives them a little bit of advance notice, they can move over," Trooper Conrad said.

Last year Iowa State Patrol wrote about 279 tickets to those who violated the move over law, that's up by 30 tickets from 2016 and 2015.

If you don't obey the new traffic law you could be looking at a nearly $200 fine.