Effective Jan. 1, 2012, Article 1144-a of the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law will be expanded to include "hazard vehicles displaying one or more amber lights."
This is the law that requires motorists to "exercise due care to avoid colliding with an authorized emergency vehicle that is parked, stopped, or standing on the shoulder or any portion of such highway" and is displaying emergency lights. Compliance with this law means slowing down to an appropriate speed while passing these vehicles and, if on a limited access highway, moving over a lane if it is practicable to do so.
With the addition of hazard vehicles under Article 1144-a, a motorist must also slow down and move over for hazard vehicles with flashing amber lights as well as police, fire, and rescue vehicles with flashing red, white, and/or blue lights. Under V&T Law, hazard vehicles are defined as:
-Vehicles owned and operated or leased by a public utility, whether private or public, used in the construction, maintenance and repair of its facilities
-Vehicles equipped or designed for towing or pushing of disabled vehicles
-Vehicles engaged in highway maintenance
-Vehicles engaged in ice and snow removal on a public highway
-Vehicles driven by rural letter carriers while in the performance of their official duties
A person convicted of a violation under V&T Law Section 1144-a is subject to a fine of up to $150 for the first offense plus applicable surcharges. You will also get two points on your license.
To access the more than 200 "Did You Know" articles and more information on vehicle and traffic law and traffic safety, go the Franklin County Traffic Safety Board's website at: www.franklincony.org and click on the Traffic Safety Board under departments.