Get ready to move over and slow down for emergency workers

Published Wednesday, 24 August, 2022 at 12:53 PM

Minister for Transport and Main Roads
The Honourable Mark Bailey


New road rules requiring motorists to move over and slow down will come into effect next month to keep emergency response workers safe.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said the rules are aimed at keeping first responders safe on the roadside.

“Our emergency service and first responders do an incredible job, and they play a critical role in roadside incidents,” Mr Bailey said.

“The rule is simple – if you see flashing lights at the roadside, move over and slow down.

“We know many people already do it, but this change makes it clear that you must do it to keep the people helping in an incident safe from harm.”

The new rule applies to ambulances, police cars, fire trucks, and transport enforcement vehicles, as well as breakdown assistance providers such as RACQ, tow trucks and assistance vehicles.

“An education campaign will run to make sure people are aware of the changes, which will come into effect from 16 September (2022),” Mr Bailey said.

"It is no accident that we are making this announcement during Queensland Road Safety Week.

"Every day, every Queensland road user has a role to play in keeping themselves and each other safe – and that includes keeping our emergency response workers safe as they care for others.

"During Queensland Road Safety Week, we're reminding Queenslanders that their behaviour on the road has an impact and that road safety starts with all of us."

Queensland Road Safety Week is celebrated from 22 to 26 August, in partnership with Queensland Police Service, and more information is available on the StreetSmarts website (

Mr Bailey extended his thanks to RACQ for their role in creating awareness of the need for this rule.

"RACQ has worked alongside the Queensland Government to advocate for this change," he said.

RACQ Group Executive - Assistance, Glenn Toms said the Club congratulated the Queensland Government on the vital road safety rule. 

“We have been advocating for this change since 2017, with 90 percent of our members in favour of making this lifesaving road rule a reality, so we are incredibly pleased the Government is taking action,” Mr Toms said.

“Emergency responders, including our roadside crews, put their lives on the line each and every day by working in high-risk and often high-speed environments to rescue stranded motorists, but one wrong move by a passing driver could end in tragedy.

“This new rule will require Queenslanders to change the way they drive around roadside incidents to give responders a safe space to do their job - so they can continue to help the people they’re there to protect, and ensure everyone gets home safely."

Transurban Queensland Group Executive Sue Johnson welcomed the announcement. 

“Our incident response crews are working day and night to help keep motorists safe. Finding yourself on a busy motorway can be a frightening experience, but everyday our trained professionals are ready to lend a hand within minutes," Ms Johnson said.

“We all have a responsibility to help protect our first responders, which is why we are so pleased to see these new laws coming into effect.

“Slowing down when you see flashing lights is a really simple thing every motorist can do to help protect our first responders, so they can get home safely to their loved ones.”

The penalty for not moving over and slowing down will be $432 and three demerit points – enforceable by the Queensland Police Service.

More information about road safety initiatives can be found at


MEDIA CONTACT: Courtney Thompson - 0433 585 570