Reckless Driving By Failure To Move Over Or Yield To An Emergency Vehicle In Virginia
27 January 2021
Reckless Driving By Failure To Move Over Or Yield To An Emergency Vehicle in Virginia is punished under Virginia Code §46.2-861.1. That law states, in pertinent part:
Va Code §46.2-861.1. Drivers to yield right-of-way or reduce speed when approaching stationary vehicles displaying certain warning lights on highways; penalties.
A. The driver of any motor vehicle, upon approaching a stationary vehicle that is displaying a flashing, blinking, or alternating blue, red, or amber light or lights as provided in §46.2-1022, 46.2-1023, or 46.2-1024 or subsection B of §46.2-1026 shall (i) on a highway having at least four lanes, at least two of which are intended for traffic proceeding as the approaching vehicle, proceed with caution and, if reasonable, with due regard for safety and traffic conditions, yield the right-of-way by making a lane change into a lane not adjacent to the stationary vehicle or (ii) if changing lanes would be unreasonable or unsafe, proceed with due caution and maintain a safe speed for highway conditions. A violation of any provision of this subsection is reckless driving.
Under this law, the police officer must be able to prove that you — upon approaching a parked emergency vehicle displaying flashing blue or red lights — failed to either move over into an adjacent lane away from the emergency vehicle or slow down to a safe speed while next to the emergency vehicle. This is the newest addition to the Reckless Driving catalog of charges. This is known as Virginia’s “Move Over” law and it became a Reckless Driving offense in 2019.
For example, it is considered Reckless Driving By Failure To Move Over Or Yield To An Emergency Vehicle in Virginia if you — upon approaching a parked police car with its flashing blue lights on — fail to move over into an adjacent lane away from the police car or slow down to a safe speed while next to the police car.
By Michael Huff, Esq.