Michigan is latest state to start enforcing left lane laws

Michigan State Police began cracking down on drivers who cruise in the left lane on March 1st, joining a list of other states with similar laws on the books.

Left Lane Only for Passing

Troopers say that the new law means that the left lane of any Michigan State highway is for passing only. Michigan State Police say that the law is meant to keep people safe, and anyone who gets caught cruising in the left lane could get a ticket or points on their license. Some experts believe that driving too slow in the passing lane is at least as dangerous as driving too fast because people trapped from behind get frustrated and make dangerous maneuvers, creating road rage and accidents.

Missouri

Missouri state law also bans vehicles from cruising in the leftmost lane, and Missouri law enforcement says one of the biggest problems on its highways are left lane violations. Those drivers who insist on staying in the left lane for the entire time they’re driving on the highway are called left lane campers by many in law enforcement, and officers advise that staying in the left lane, especially next to large trucks, is very dangerous. The right lane is for driving and the left, passing. Despite the dangers of left lane cruising, Missouri State Police have said their goals are not to write tickets but to make sure people are safe.

Other States

Georgia, Tennessee, Virginia, Nevada and Oklahoma are among other states with new left lane laws, and have been increasing fines and ratcheting up enforcement within the last five years. In addition to its new law, Oklahoma has erected 234 signs warning drivers not to “impede the left lane.”  Beginning Nov. 1st, law enforcement will be able to stop and ticket drivers — $235.25 and court costs — who stay in the left lane unless they have a good reason to be there. The new law adopted this year by the Oklahoma Legislature specifically prohibits being in the left-most lane of a roadway that has four or more lanes, for example: a highway with two lanes of travel each going in opposite directions. The message from the Department of Public Safety is that the left lane should be clear as often as possible. In Maryland, driving in the left passing lane could cost drivers hundreds of dollars. The state’s House and Senate passed a law in 2017 to create fines for driving slowly in the fast lane. A first offense would incur a $75 fine, a second violation $150 and any more infractions $250. It applies to roads of three or more lanes in one direction with speed limits of at least 55 mph.

 

Help us grow by sharing this article!