Rock Talk

On the Road: Left Lane for Passing

Last updated on November 12, 2019 at 09:07 am

Have you ever been stuck behind someone on the highway that’s driving slowly in the left lane? Depending on the specific circumstances, they could have been breaking the law by not leaving the left lane for passing.

New Jersey is among the states that have laws that punish left lane drivers and, as of this month, Indiana is too. A report from NBC News, notes that there is only a handful of states that have laws specifically targeting left-lane laggards.

Not only is New Jersey among those states, but in 2013, it beefed up its fines for failing to keep right on roads. Fines in the Garden State for the offense range from $100 to $300, and include a $50 surcharge. From the law:

“A vehicle shall normally be driven in the lane nearest the right-hand edge or curb of the roadway when that lane is available for travel, except when overtaking another vehicle or in preparation for a left turn.”

People driving slowly in the left lane can also be a source of road rage incidents. A poll released in May by travel service company Expedia lists the most common traffic-related issues that aggravate drivers on the road. The “left lane hog” was in third place while tailgaters were in second. Texting while driving annoyed drivers the most.

That poll jibes with a Plymouth Rock Assurance study released earlier this year, which found that texting while driving was the top safety concern on New Jersey’s roads, with road rage coming in fifth place.

We can all do our part to travel safely, and legally, on the road by keeping to the right and leaving the left lane for passing. Do you know someone that could use a refresher on staying to the right on highways? Share this blog with them as a reminder.

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