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N Cal Atty
N Cal Atty, Attorney
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 9411
Experience:  Since 1983
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I'm an NYS certified escort. I'm allowed to control traffic

Customer Question

I'm an NYS certified escort. I'm allowed to control traffic and even close lanes as long as I feel it's the only safe thing to do. Should an officer disagree with me what should I do? Can he tell me to stop what I'm doing? Even though I think it's the safe thing to do? I've been told that if the officer disagrees with me he can't tell me to stop what I'm doing unless he takes over and does it himself but I don't know how true that is.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Traffic Law
Expert:  N Cal Atty replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your question.

My research indicates that the Courts have not decided that question.

Item 4 at page 22 of the manual states that you do have the authority to direct traffic when necessary. But failure to obey a direct command of a law enforcement officer can get you arrested and you would be gambling as to whether the Court would agree with you that you had the right to direct traffic because it was necessary, or agree with the officer that either it was not necessary or that an escort's right to direct traffic is trumped by a direct command of a police officer.

" 1102. Obedience to police officers and flagpersons. No person shall fail or refuse to comply with any lawful order or direction of any police officer or flagperson or other person duly empowered to regulate traffic."

I have been unable to find any NY court opinion that addresses that issue. Not every legal question has a simple answer. My opinion is that if after politely explaining to the officer the need for you to direct traffic and the officer's refusal to take over doing that, the safest move is to obey the officer. If the situation seems really unsafe you might tell the driver of the escorted vehicle to park while you call your supervisor for instructions.

I hope this informnation is helpful.