It doesn’t take a visit from severe weather systems Leslie or Michael to bring potential flooding or other emergency conditions to the Delaware Valley.
And the next time they hit, going around those Road Closed barricades could mean more than the implied danger ahead.
A new state law imposing stiff penalties on motorists who ignore “road closed” or other safety warning signs and devices is now in effect, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation said this week.
Act 114, signed on July 5 by Gov. Tom Corbett, reinforces the critical need for all drivers to obey traffic control signs. The law aims to increase safety for motorists and emergency responders in areas where flooding or other hazardous conditions exist.
“Too often, motorists decide their immediate needs outweigh the safety warning signs and they ignore them, which increases hazards for them and emergency responders,” said PennDOT Secretary Barry J. Schoch. “This law underscores that we take safety seriously. When motorists are confronted with emergency road closures, we urge them to use common sense and obey the signs that are placed to keep them safe.”
Under the law, motorists who drive around or through signs or traffic control devices closing a road or highway due to hazardous conditions will have two points added to their driving records and be fined up to $250.
If the violation results in a need for emergency responders to be called, the fine is increased to between $250 and $500. In addition, violators will be held liable for repaying the costs of staging the emergency response.
Information provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.