States take aim at slow drivers in the left lane
Move over or pay up. That’s the message from police to slowpokes.
Multiple states are taking aim at drivers clogging up the left lane on highways by passing laws that could lead to fines up to $500 for drivers who refuse to move over when traffic backs up behind them.
Indiana recently passed a bill that will allow police to cite drivers in the left lane if they are holding up other motorists. While tickets could reach up to $500, it’s likely most fines will be much less, according to USA Today.
The bill goes into effect July 1. The new law does not apply during severe weather situations and traffic jams.
Colorado’s left lane law went into effect in July 2004. It reads: “A person shall not drive a motor vehicle in the passing lane of a highway if the speed limit is sixty-five miles per hour or more unless such person is passing other motor vehicles that are in a nonpassing lane or turning left, or unless the volume of traffic does not permit the motor vehicle to safely merge into a nonpassing lane.”
Lawmakers in Oregon are also considering a similar bill. Last year, troopers in Oregon pulled over 14,000 drivers for left lane violations, but in many cases they only issued a warning. The new bill calls for penalties of $124 or more, depending on how far under the speed limit drivers are going.
Georgia, New Jersey, Florida and Michigan have similar laws in place. A bill introduced in the North Carolina Senate earlier this year would allow police to fine drivers $200 for driving below the maximum speed in the left lane.
Studies have continuously shown it is safer to pass on the left. Drivers hogging the left lane also increase the likelihood of crashes by backing up traffic.
Forty states have some form of penalty in place for drivers clogging up traffic, according to NBC.