Illinois drivers must start obeying Scott’s Law or face the consequences as the state police step up enforcement of the move-over law. More tickets are expected to be issued this spring and summer due to rising concerns about the safety of state troopers and other emergency services personnel when working roadside traffic stops and accident scenes.
In the first few months of 2019, a record number of state troopers, 16, were struck by other vehicles and two of them were killed. Nearly 500 drivers have already been ticketed for Scott’s Law violations in 2019, more than double the number during a comparable time frame in 2018.
The Penalty for Failing to Move Over
Scott’s Law, 625 ILCS 5/11-907(c), requires drivers to slow down and change lanes away from a stopped emergency vehicle when they see flashing lights. The penalty for this traffic violation is a fine between $100 and $10,000, plus a driver’s license suspension if the violation results in a collision causing property damage (90 days to one year), injury (180 days to two years), or death (two years).
The State’s Attorneys in several Illinois counties have announced that they will be tougher in their prosecutions of move-over violators. One such State’s Attorney says they will no longer give offenders the option of court supervision, which keeps a ticket off your driving record. Another said they will take it a step further and ensure that offenders pay a fine of at least $500 plus court costs, for a total cost of nearly $1,000.
Increased Enforcement of Illinois’ Move-Over Law
Some law enforcement officers blame cell phones and distracted drivers for the rise in accidents. One county sheriff recounted an incident in which a sergeant and a trooper were both standing by their vehicles on the side of a highway. A distracted driver hit both of their cars, but the officers escaped injury in that case. The Illinois Sheriff’s Association has responded by initiating a traffic awareness campaign to help prevent deputies from being endangered during traffic stops.
One Illinois fire department announced that it will be taking additional precautions when handling serious traffic accidents. Rather than take the risk of being hit by passing cars, they plan to close the roadway entirely in both directions and will call upon law enforcement to assist with redirecting traffic to detours.
Will County Traffic Ticket Defense Lawyer
A traffic ticket can be more than a minor nuisance. If you are cited for violating Scott’s Law, you could be facing a serious fine and suspension of your driver’s license. You will need an experienced Will County ticket defense lawyer who can negotiate with the prosecutor for a reduced sentence or possibly even dismissal of the charges. Call the Law Offices of Jack L. Zaremba for a free consultation at 815-740-4025.