Wilson Reminds Public to Move Over for Stopped Emergency Vehicles
(January 23, 2015) Simcoe-Grey MPP Jim Wilson wants to increase public awareness of the "Move Over" campaign launched by the Ontario Provincial Police Association (OPPA) last month. The campaign focuses on the human cost associated with vehicles failing to slow down or move over for stopped emergency vehicles.
"It's crucial that motorists realize that they must move over when approaching an emergency vehicle that is stopped," said Wilson. "It's worrisome for me to hear from the OPPA that after more than ten years many motorists are still unaware of this law that not only protects emergency service workers, but the public as well."
According to the OPPA, five members of their Association have been killed in roadside accidents since 1989. Last winter many people were hurt and dozens of OPP cruisers were either damaged or destroyed after being struck by passing motorists. The OPPA has produced two three minute videos to show the human cost of failing to slow down and move over for stopped emergency vehicles. Wilson has the videos posted on his website.
Ontario's Highway Traffic Act stipulates as per the Ministry of Transportation website that when approaching a police, fire or ambulance vehicle stopped with its red lights flashing in the same direction of travel, either in a lane or on the shoulder of the road, to slow down and pass with caution. If the road has two or more lanes the motorist must move over into another lane, if it can be done safely.
"I would like to take this opportunity to thank the policing community for the work they do every day to keep our communities safe," continued Wilson. "Emergency service workers devote their lives to our well-being. This is the least we can do in the interest of public safety."