Rules of the Road
Ensuring Traffic Stop Safety
The Pennsylvania State Police partnered with Commonwealth Media Services to create a video devoted to traffic stop safety. Our goal is educate drivers on what to expect during a stop with the goal of ensuring the safety of everyone involved. Learn what drivers are required to do, and should do, if stopped by the police. Answers to some of the most common questions regarding traffic stops are also addressed in the video.
Pennsylvania’s Move Over Law requires drivers approaching an emergency response area to move over to a lane farther away. Drivers who are unable to safely merge into a lane farther away from the emergency response area are required to slow to no more than 20 mph below the posted speed limit. An emergency response area is where an emergency vehicle has its lights flashing, or where road crews or emergency responders have lighted flares, posted signs, or try to warn travelers.
Clearing off your Vehicle
In the winter it is important to clear
all snow and ice from your entire vehicle.
A new law went it effect in 2022 that says a driver of a motor vehicle or motor carrier vehicle must make reasonable efforts to remove accumulated ice or snow from the motor vehicle or motor carrier vehicle including the hood, trunk and roof of the vehicle within 24 hours after the snow or ice event. Failure to do so can result in a traffic stop and the driver faces a fine of $50 for each offense regardless of whether any snow or ice is dislodged from the vehicle.
In addition, when snow or ice is dislodged or falls from a moving vehicle or motor carrier vehicle and strikes another vehicle or pedestrian causing death or serious bodily injury, the operator of the vehicle from which the snow or ice is dislodged or falls shall be subject to a fine of not less than $200 nor more than $1,500 for each offense.
Pennsylvania vehicle code law:
3721. Snow and ice
Remember state law also makes it unlawful to drive a motor vehicle if ice or snow on the windshield, rear window, or side windows obstructs, obscures or impairs the driver's clear view of the highway or any intersecting highway.
Pennsylvania vehicle code law:
4524. Windshield obstructions and wipers
When your wipers are on, your headlights are also required to be on.
Pennsylvania vehicle code law: 4302. Periods for requiring lighted lamps
The operator of a vehicle upon a highway shall display the lighted head lamps and other lamps and illuminating devices required under this chapter for different classes of vehicles, subject to exceptions with respect to parked vehicles, at the following times:
- Between sunset and sunrise.
- Any time when the operator cannot discern a person or vehicle upon the highway from a distance of 1,000 feet due to insufficient light or unfavorable atmospheric conditions, including rain, snow, sleet, hail, fog, smoke or smog.
- Any time when the vehicle's windshield wipers are in continuous or intermittent use due to precipitation or atmospheric moisture, including rain, snow, sleet or mist.