Wisconsin Department of Transportation

Alert: The following services will be unavailable on Saturday, January 5, 2013 from 12 a.m. (midnight) to 6 a.m. CST due to system maintenance.

"Move Over Law"

Vehicles moving over in response to a law enforcement vehicle working along side the highway.
Move over or slow down for stopped emergency vehicles

Drivers must provide a safety zone for stopped law enforcement, emergency and maintenance vehicles

To help safeguard law enforcement officers, emergency responders, road maintenance workers, and others who work on the side of highways, Wisconsin has a "Move Over Law."

"State law. Move over or slow down for stopped emergency vehicles" sign

The law requires drivers to shift lanes or slow down in order to provide a "safety zone" for a squad car, ambulance, fire truck, tow truck, utility vehicle, or highway maintenance vehicle that is stopped on the side of a road with its warning lights flashing.


Drivers have two options for creating a safety zone:

  • If the road has more than one directional lane, like the Interstate, and you can switch lanes safely, you must move over to vacate the lane closest to the law enforcement or other vehicle with its lights flashing.
  • If the road has a single directional lane or you can't safely move over, you must reduce your speed.

Failure of motorists to move over is one of the reasons that motor vehicle crashes kill more law enforcement officers on duty than any other cause.

YouTube - Close Call video.

Media materials

For more information:

Questions about the content of this page:
Steve Olsen, steve.olson@dot.wi.gov
Last modified: November 6, 2014

All external hyperlinks are provided for your information and for the benefit of the general public. The Wisconsin Department of Transportation does not testify to, sponsor or endorse the accuracy of the information provided on externally linked pages. Some pages contain links to other documents and media types (PDF, Word, Flash, Video, etc.) and require free plugins to work. Visit our software information page for assistance.