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Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 41220
Experience:  Multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation and administration.
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On June 6, 2013, I was cited by Officer Chad Wright, #1788,

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On June 6, 2013, I was cited by Officer Chad Wright, #1788, from Gilbert on a Mesa road for failure of the "Move Over Law" while he was citing another motorist. I went to court in Gilbert to Judge Bruce Owens which the judge affirmed that I only moved over one lane when passing the officer, but in ARS 28-775e he stated that when there are three or more lanes that I should move over to the furtherest left lane if there was no traffic and it was safe to do so. I have read the ARS. Where does it say move over two lanes to allow one lane of non-occupancy between you and the officer where there is three or more lanes traveling in the same direction? Is there additional sections of this law that I cannot find? Thank you.

Thank you for your question. Please permit me to assist you with your concerns.

To answer your question directly, the law DOES NOT have such language. I have linked you to the law and the language below, and nowhere does it state that you as an operator of a vehicle must go to the furthermost lane, you simply have to go to the closest lane if it is reasonable to do so. I am not sure where the judge was looking, as I am reviewing the same language, but I do not see his answer as valid under Arizona law.

Here is the law below:

28-775. Authorized emergency vehicles; approaching; following fire apparatus; passing stationary vehicles; defensive driving schools; driver license examinations

A. Except when otherwise directed by a police officer, on the immediate approach of an authorized emergency vehicle that is equipped with at least one lighted lamp exhibiting a red or red and blue light or lens visible under normal atmospheric conditions from a distance of five hundred feet to the front of the vehicle and that is giving an audible signal by siren, exhaust whistle or bell, the driver of another vehicle shall:

1. Yield the right-of-way.

2. Immediately drive to a position parallel to and as close as possible to the right-hand edge or curb of the roadway clear of any intersection.

3. Stop and remain in the position prescribed in paragraph 2 of this subsection until the authorized emergency vehicle has passed.

B. An authorized emergency vehicle being operated with activated emergency lights and siren is exempt from the requirements of this section.

C. The driver of a vehicle other than one on official business shall not follow any fire apparatus traveling in response to a fire alarm closer than five hundred feet or drive into or park the vehicle within the block where fire apparatus has stopped in answer to a fire alarm.

D. When a police vehicle is giving a visual signal with at least one lighted red or red and blue light or lens and is giving an audible signal by siren, the driver of another vehicle:

1. Shall not approach or drive parallel to the police vehicle.

2. Shall maintain a distance of at least three hundred feet behind any police vehicle involved in an emergency until the police vehicle moves to the lane closest to the right-hand edge or curb of the roadway.

E. If a person who drives a vehicle approaches a stationary vehicle and the stationary vehicle is giving a signal by displaying alternately flashing lights or is displaying warning lights, the person shall do either of the following:

1. If on a highway having at least four lanes with at least two lanes proceeding in the same direction as the approaching vehicle, proceed with due caution and if possible, with due regard to safety and traffic conditions, yield the right-of-way by making a lane change into a lane not adjacent to that of the stationary vehicle.

2. If changing lanes would be impossible or unsafe, proceed with due caution and reduce the speed of the vehicle, maintaining a safe speed for road conditions.

F. This section does not relieve the driver of an authorized emergency vehicle from the duty to drive with due regard for the safety of all persons using the highway.

G. Defensive driving school courses that are offered by defensive driving schools operated pursuant to chapter 8, article 7 of this title may include educational information relating to subsections D and E. The department may include information relating to subsections D and E in any of the department's examination, information or education material.

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