It’s one of the unwritten rules of the highway: Slower drivers generally stay out of the left lane. Most of us know that the left lane is for fast drivers. Apparently not enough people in Florida know this rule, so our Legislature decided to do somethng about it. As of July 1, 2013, drivers could face a $60 ticket for going 10 mph slower than the speed limit in the left lanes of Florida highways and hit with a 3-point moving violation. This law does not apply to drivers preparing for a left turn at an intersection.
The Florida Times Union interviewed Jerry Webster, director of the Northeast Florida Safety Council, for their article on the new law. Mr. Webster found the new law beneficial because it might clear up traffic congestion and ease tensions on the roadways. œI have seen cases where someone is trying to zip in between the guys on the right when the one in front is going slow, and those are dangerous maneuvers, Webster said. œAnd when people get frustrated, they will forget to use turn signals, and you don’t know what they are going to do. They will be tailgating and there are rear-end collisions when the person going slow on the left slows down even more.
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Here is to hoping that it will make the flow of traffic even better because it will eliminate or at least reduce improper lane changes or following too closely. FHP reports that because the law is new, it’s up to officers’ discretion whether to ticket or give someone a warning. They are working on making a public service announcement to remind drivers of the new law so they are aware that exceeding the speed limit is not the only speed-related violation.
If there is a reason that keeps drivers from traveling the speed limit in the left lane, law enforcement officers say they should stick to the right lane so they don’t impede the flow of traffic and avoid getting a traffic ticket.