New York Traffic Ticket Lawyer: Unsafe Lane Change Ticket

One of the most common moving violations we see in our office is the Unsafe Lane Change Summons.  If a police officer feels that you changed lanes unsafely, you may be given an unsafe lane change ticket.

NY VTL 1128(a) requires drivers to remain in one lane and changing from that lane is not permitted unless the driver ascertained that moving lanes could be completed safely.

VTL 1128(b) directs that passing other vehicles or making a left turn from a center lane can only be done if executed in a safe manner.

VTL 1128 (c) & (d) directs motorists to carefully obey signs and hazardous road markings and not cross these special lane markings.

While the unsafe lane change laws seem straightforward and reasonable, it’s possible to change lanes without checking your blind spot or signaling your intent to change lanes thus making it unsafe.  In addition, failure to obey road markings or signs, while changing lanes, could result in an unsafe lane change ticket.

It’s also important to remember the Move Over Law which requires drivers to change lanes if an emergency vehicle is on the shoulder of the road.  Improperly passing an emergency vehicle could also result in an Unsafe Lane Change Summons.

The best way to avoid being ticketed for an Unsafe Lane Change violation is to:

  • Look to make sure that there is enough space to change lanes.
  • Be sure to signal your intent to change lanes.
  • Check all mirrors to ensure that the lanes are clear and a lane change is safe.
  • Check your blind spot.
  • Move slowly to the next lane.

The Unsafe Lane Change Ticket is 3 points.  Receiving 11 or more points on your license in an 18 month period could lead to the suspension of your license.

If you’ve received an Unsafe Lane Change ticket, or any other moving violation in New York, call 212-227-9008 or email for free legal advice on how we can defend your traffic ticket.


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