• Coastal South Law

What’s the Penalty for Not Giving Way to an Emergency Services Vehicle in North Carolina?

In North Carolina, drivers are required to give way to emergency services vehicles when traveling on the road. If a driver does not give way to an emergency services vehicle, they may be subject to a fine or court penalty. The penalty for not giving way to an emergency services vehicle can vary depending on the situation, but generally speaking, it is a ticket that can result in a fine or other penalties.

What is an Emergency Services Vehicle?

The Emergency Services Vehicle (ESV) is a specially designed vehicle that is used by emergency responders, such as police officers and firefighters. These vehicles are typically equipped with specialized equipment, such as lights and sirens, to help them respond quickly to emergencies.

Under North Carolina law, emergency services vehicles are defined as any vehicle operated by a government or private agency that is designated by the state as being responsible for providing emergency service, including but not limited to ambulances, fire trucks, and police cars.

Understanding the Move Over Law in North Carolina

The Move Over Law in North Carolina is a state law that requires drivers to move over one lane when they see emergency service vehicles approaching or passing. This law also applies even when an emergency services vehicle is parked on the side of the road but has its lights flashing. This law is meant to help emergency service workers get access to the roadways as freely as they would like.

Possible Penalties for Not Giving Way to Emergency Services Vehicles in North Carolina

As we have mentioned, in North Carolina, it is illegal to not give way to an emergency services vehicle when the vehicle is displaying a flashing red light and siren. The penalties for violating this law vary depending on the severity of the violation but generally include the following:

  • Getting slapped with a $250 fine + court fees;

  • Receiving three demerit points on your driving record and one insurance point, which might lead to a 25% rise in your premiums.

If you fail to yield to an emergency vehicle and seriously injure or kill a police officer, firefighter, or other emergency vehicle worker, you will be charged with a Class I felony. If found guilty, the possible sentence ranges from three to 12 twelve months in jail.

Given the above, if you are pulled over and charged with failing to give way to an emergency services vehicle, it is important to consult with an attorney who will be able to help you understand your legal rights and defenses.

Have You Been Cited for Not Giving Way to an Emergency Services Vehicle in North Carolina?

If you have been ticketed for not giving way to an emergency services vehicle in North Carolina, you should speak to a traffic tickets attorney at our firm. Our attorneys will be able to help you understand the law and determine if there is any possibility of reducing or eliminating your ticket.


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