Stitt to host ceremonial signing of bill to protect stranded motorists

OKLAHOMA CITY –  A new law aims to help drivers who are stranded on the side of the road in Oklahoma.

Senate Bill 89 orders drivers who are approaching all stationary vehicles displaying flashing lights to move into a lane that is not adjacent to the stationary vehicle.

If no additional lane exists, drivers must proceed with caution, reduce their speed and safely navigate traffic conditions. The law goes into effect on Nov. 1.

“A previous version of the statute stipulated specific types of vehicles and colors of flashing lights to be avoided,” said Leslie Gamble, AAA Oklahoma public and government affairs manager. “Yet, at speeds on our highways, it’s usually impossible for motorists to distinguish those nuances. This simplifies the law so that caution must be extended to anyone with flashing lights in a stationary vehicle on the roadside.”

Sen. Brent Howard and Rep. Charles Ortega authored the measure. On Tuesday, Gov. Kevin Stitt will host a ceremonial signing of the bill

According to the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office, more than 10,000 crashes in Oklahoma involved individuals on the side of the road in 2017.

“Our dedicated AAA Roadside Rescue team and other first responders risk their lives daily while assisting stranded motorists,” Gamble said. “This law protects all involved in roadside situations who are at high risk and need drivers’ full assistance in making all possible efforts to avoid impacted areas.”

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