Changes in Texas Driving Law

New Texas driving laws and criminal statutes went into effect on September 1, 2011. Many of the new laws may make the roads much safer for truckers.

One of the primary changes directly affecting truckers, trucking companies and the trucking industry is the change in speed limits. Trucks may now travel at the same speed as other vehicles, and there will no longer be any difference in night-time speed limits.

The second primary change affecting truckers is the addition of tow trucks to the Move Over Law’s emergency vehicle list. All vehicles will now need to slow down or move out of the lane closest to any tow truck that's stopped and has its emergency lights activated. This only applies if you’re traveling in the same direction on a multiple lane road. The fine for not doing so is $200, and the driver can expect even heftier penalties if involved in an accident that causes property damage or injuries due to failing to vacate the lane.

The third primary change of the law is the increase in penalties for starting roadside fires. Any fire caused by a driver’s careless toss of a lit cigarette, cigar, or other debris can result in a fine up to $500 now.

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