A tragedy in Monmouth County last year has spurred a New Jersey lawmaker to sponsor legislation that would expand the state's Move Over law to include public works vehicles.

Sean Gallup, Getty Images

In May 2013, 39-year-old Michael Massey of Freehold Township was struck and killed by a passing vehicle while he was loading a garbage truck as part of his public works job in Ocean Township.

Under current law, drivers are required to reduce their speed and change lanes when it's safe when approaching parked police cars, fire trucks and ambulances.

"This tragedy really should never have happened," said Sen. Jennifer Beck (R-Red Bank). "People should be respectful of those workers. It only makes sense that they should get some kind of protection, additional protection."

The measure, dubbed Michael Massey's Law, would not only require drivers to move over and change lanes, but it also would require sanitation vehicles to display flashing amber warning lights.

"I think the fact that public works vehicles were not included in the original law was simply an oversight," Beck said.

Under Beck's bill, violators would face a maximum $500 fine.

A companion bill is co-sponsored in the Assembly by Republican members Mary Pat Angelini (R-Ocean) and Caroline Casagrande (R-Freehold).