Officers remind drivers to "move over"

Posted: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 --- 9:15 p.m.

As a highway worker, Mark McCoy's job is to improve drivers' safety on the roads. But as he works, many drivers endanger his safety, ignoring the Move Over Law.

"It's very treacherous at times... It's very scary," McCoy said.

The law was designed to keep safe those who patrol and work on the roads. However, deputies with Dane County Sheriff's Office say many drivers aren't obeying the law, especially in construction zones.

McCoy worked this afternoon on Highway 151, patching potholes. While he was working, Sheriff's Office deputies were positioned slightly up the road from him, watching for people who didn't move over.

Within the first five minutes of enforcement, officers caught six violators.

One car sped by, feet from McCoy, going nine miles per hour above the speed limit, making no attempt to move over.

"They didn't even have the respect to slow down," said Deputy Sheriff Randy Wiessinger.

Wiessinger said speeding and distracted driving contribute to people ignoring the law.

"In the last citation I wrote a few days ago, the driver didn't see us until the very last second when he was next to us... that means he was doing something else while driving down the road at 70 miles per hour," Wiessinger said.

It's an issue that both Wiessinger and McCoy know well. Both have been hit in the past by drivers not moving over.

"Over families want you to move over and slow down," Wiessinger said.

The law applies for all construction, law enforcement, fire, EMS and tow truck vehicles on the side of the road. The first priority is to move over one lane to the left. If you can't safely do that, you must slow down below the speed limit in your current lane.

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