By Sgt. Nick Krau, MPD
The Maui Police Department will continue to participate in the nationwide crackdown on Drunk Drivers through September 1st. This nationwide campaign called “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” is a partnership between law enforcement agencies and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in a joint effort to reduce impaired driving.
For the remainder of this campaign the Maui Police Department will continue to utilize increased saturation patrols and Intoxication Control Checkpoints at various locations throughout the county. Motorists commuting, especially in the late evening and early morning hours have likely noticed the increased presence of traffic enforcement on our highways. On behalf of the Traffic Section and DUI Task Force Unit, I would like to remind our community to please observe the “Move Over Law.”
The State of Hawaii “Move Over Law” which was designed to help protect police officers and other emergency workers was enacted in July, 2012. All 50 states now have a “Move Over Law” and although the wording of these laws may vary from state to state the concept and purpose of these laws are the same. That purpose is to keep our emergency workers safe as they perform their jobs on our roads and highways.
The State of Hawaii “Move Over Law” states “the driver of a vehicle that is approaching an emergency vehicle that is stopped for an emergency, investigation of a possible traffic violation, rendering assistance to a police officer, or other official duties, as indicated by the flashing emergency lights of the stopped emergency vehicle, shall: make a lane change into the adjacent lane or if possible, to two lanes over which leaves one lane between the driver and the emergency vehicle.” If necessary, the driver shall come to a complete stop before making a lane change.
This law defines an “emergency vehicle” as a police or fire department vehicle, ocean safety vehicle, emergency medical services vehicle, freeway service patrol vehicle, or a tow truck. In the event that there is not another lane to change into and a driver is unable to change lanes they shall slow down to a prudent speed that is safe.
Over the past two weeks while actively participating in the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign, DUI Task Force officers have also issued more than 60 citations to motorists for violating the “Move Over Law.” We need our officers to be able to perform their jobs and thoroughly investigate each traffic offense without having to worry about these additional life threatening hazards.