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The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation is reminding drivers of recently amended traffic laws ahead of the state’s Highway Safety Law Awareness Week, which runs from Feb. 17-23.

  • Automatic speed enforcement: Drivers going more than 11 miles per hour over the posted speed limit in a work zone will receive a written warning, followed by a $75 fine for the second offense and a $150 fine for the third offense
  • "Steer Clear" law: When approaching an emergency scene, drivers must move over or slow down for all responders, including police, fire and ambulance crews; stopped tow trucks and maintenance vehicles. They must slow down or move one lane away (if possible) when approaching a stationary trash or recycling truck.
  • Penalties for DUIs: A fourth DUI in 10 years is a felony, and a third DUI in 10 years could be a felony depending on the driver's blood alcohol content. Legal consequences for homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence were also strengthened.
  • Removing snow or ice: Snow must be removed from vehicles and headlights. If snow or ice falls from a vehicle and strikes another vehicle or pedestrian, causing death or serious injury, the driver faces a fine up to $1,000.
  • "Turn Around, Don't Drown": Motorists may not drive past, around or through a sign or traffic-control device closing a road or highway for an existing or hazardous condition. Failure to adhere to this is a summary offense which could result in a fine up to $250. If the violation results in the use of a first responder, rescue personnel or tow truck, the fine will increase to a $500 maximum, and the driver is responsible for emergency response costs.
  • "Right-of-way for pedestrians in crosswalks: When a traffic-control device is not in place or in operation, drivers must yield right of way to pedestrians crossing the roadway at an intersection with a marked or unmarked crosswalk. Violations will result in a summary offense with a fine up to $50.

PennDOT will be posting videos detailing the amended laws on its Facebook page throughout the awareness campaign. State residents can join the conversation about safety and traffic laws on Twitter and Facebook using #PATrafficLaw.

 

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