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    Georgia’s Move Over, Spencer Pass Law history

    The Spencer Pass Law is named for the 47-year-old who lost his life while helping a motorist on I-85 in 2011.

    ATLANTA — First responders say that far too often, drivers are ignoring a law inspired by a man who dedicated his life to serving others.

    “He is our greatest hero,” Jason Josey, Georgia Department of Transportation Highway Emergency Response Operator, said. “He was the one that made the ultimate sacrifice, and for that, we are completely 100% indebted to what he gave.”

    In 2011, Josey lost co-worker and friend Spencer Pass. The 47-year-old father, gospel singer, and GDOT HERO was helping a motorist along I-85 when another motorist struck and killed him.

    Shortly after his death, the Georgia legislature passed the Spencer Pass Law, also known as the “move over” law. It requires drivers to move over a lane when they encounter the flashing lights of first responders like HERO units, police, or a tow truck like the one that was with 43-year-old Melody Cobern when she was struck and killed on I-20 on New Year’s Day.

    RELATED: Woman hit, killed while on side of I-20 as her car was being loaded onto tow truck identified

    South Fulton Police Department continues to investigate Cobern’s death. So far, no charges have been filed.

    HERO Jason Josey said that far too often, drivers ignore the law when he’s working along metro Atlanta interstates.

    “I’ve personally had many close calls, and my operators have them every day,” Josey said. “We have a lot of motorists on the road, and they have a lot of other things on their plate that they need to deal with, and so it doesn’t rise to the level of priority that we’d like.”

    More than a decade after it became law, Josey and others are spreading the word, urging Georgia drivers to move over and allow first responders to do their jobs safely.

    “It helps these people get home at night to their families,” Josey said. “It’ll help you get home at night.”

    Spencer Pass dedicated his life to keeping people safe. Part of his legacy is the law that bears his name that’s designed to save lives.


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