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OldRightHander
12-03-2007, 11:10 AM
http://www.expeditersonline.com/artman/publish/article_006549.html

Road rage bill would clear Florida’s left lanes
By Keith Goble, state legislative editor - Land Line
Nov 21, 2007, 09:33

A Florida state lawmaker is renewing his effort to keep most drivers out of the state’s fast lanes.

Sen. Mike Bennett, R-Bradenton, has prefiled a bill for the 2008 regular session that is intended to combat aggressive driving on the state’s multilane highways by reducing the number of drivers in the far left-hand lane. This is the fifth year in a row the bill has been offered in the state.

Dubbed the “Highway Safety Act,” it would give law enforcement more authority to ticket drivers who block traffic, even if they are driving the speed limit in the left lane. A failure to stay to the right would be included as one of the offenses that make up “aggressive careless driving.”

Three different years the bill died in committee and it was vetoed in 2005 by then-Gov. Jeb Bush. He said it would punish people who are driving the speed limit for not getting out of the way of speeders.

Bennett has since changed the bill to address some of the concerns.

The newest effort would prohibit travelers from driving in the left lane of a multi-lane highway when they are about to be overtaken by another vehicle. Previously, the bill allowed law enforcement to issue citations to drivers who used the left lane for anything other than passing.

Opponents say the bill is “code for increasing speed limits” and supports the actions of speeding drivers rubbing up behind slower drivers. Supporters say the measure would avert dangerous situations where frustrated motorists stuck behind a slower-moving vehicle try to pass on the right.

The bill also changes, from two to three, the number of driving offenses that must be committed at one time to constitute “aggressive careless driving.”

Violators would face a $100 fine in addition to any other fines. Repeat offenders would face as much as a $500 fine and a mandatory court appearance. Drivers also would receive points for each offense committed.

The bill – S658 – is awaiting assignment to committee for the session that begins in March.

TeamCasey
12-03-2007, 11:36 AM
What a horrible bill.

Danny Serafini
12-03-2007, 12:37 PM
Disagree, this is a wonderful idea. People who clog up the left lane are just as big a hazard as those who drive too aggressively.

OldRightHander
12-03-2007, 12:44 PM
Disagree, this is a wonderful idea. People who clog up the left lane are just as big a hazard as those who drive too aggressively.

Illinois already has such a law and several other states are already looking into it. Florida is the first one I've seen that used road rage as the reason. Illinois lawmakers stated that the left lane has to be kept clear for emergency vehicles.

Whatever the reason, this is something that should be a ticketable offense in all 50 states. We could debate what the penalty should be, but I would say that the incorrect use of lanes on the highway is one of the biggest traffic hazards out there, whether that is people clogging up the left lane or the idiots who pass on the right and weave in and out all the time. If everyone just kept right when driving and passed on the left, the highways would be a much more civil (and safer) place.

I'm just wondering why Florida took longer to address this issue, since this seems to be more of a problem there. In comparison, I've rarely encountered this in Texas. I'm usually over in the right lane watching everyone fly by me on the left.

remdog
12-03-2007, 01:49 PM
Years ago you didn't need a law to mandate the left lane for passing---courtsey and common sense ruled and drivers drove accordingly. But times have changed, there are more cars on the road, everyone's in a hurry etc. But, especially, the common sense thing has gone out the window.

Rem

MaineRed
12-03-2007, 01:55 PM
Disagree, this is a wonderful idea. People who clog up the left lane are just as big a hazard as those who drive too aggressively.

I could not agree more. Whenever I drive there is some who won't move over. The reason people come up behind these people is because they are expecting these idiots to move over. Slower traffic to the right, not slower traffic not going the speed limit.

Out on the interstate it is crazy to think you just cruise down the left lane going 65. But people do it. And they are the ones responsible for more road rage than everything else combined I bet.

TeamCasey
12-03-2007, 02:00 PM
I agree that the left lane is for passing, always have ..... but to pass a bill so speeders won't take their rageful aggression out on those who are not necessarily breaking the law is the wrong approach.

MaineRed
12-03-2007, 02:22 PM
I agree that the left lane is for passing, always have ..... but to pass a bill so speeders won't take their rageful aggression out on those who are not necessarily breaking the law is the wrong approach.

They are breaking the law as much as someone speeding. You just don't know a lot of people who have been ticketed for it.

Who decided that speed limit signs are to be obeyed but slower traffic to the right signs can be ignored?

TeamCasey
12-03-2007, 02:26 PM
Who decided that speed limit signs are to be obeyed but slower traffic to the right signs can be ignored?


Who decided that the speed limit doesn't apply to the left lane?

MaineRed
12-03-2007, 02:29 PM
Who decided that the speed limit doesn't apply to the left lane?

President Eisenhowser

Marc D
12-03-2007, 02:34 PM
Who decided that the speed limit doesn't apply to the left lane?

Its up to the police to enforce the speed limit not other drivers.

People in the left lane should extend the common courtesy that we were all taught in drivers ed...slower moving traffic keep right.

I agree 100% with the bill as a way to cut down on road rage and the dangers involved of having to go around someone who has taken it upon themselves to set the speed limit for everyone else while in the left lane.

MaineRed
12-03-2007, 02:37 PM
And it shouldn't have to be up to the police to enforce the lane issue.

My guess would be a bill like this is just a way to make sure people are made aware of the issue. Playing a PSA with a threat from the law is going to make more people take notice and it will create discussions like this one. Just playing a few actual PSAs that mention the issue isn't going to do near as much good.

If Florida had put out a PSA asking people to be courteous, we wouldn't be discussing it right now.

15fan
12-03-2007, 02:41 PM
While they're at it, I hope they come up with a way to nail all those oldsters who crawl along forgetting that their turn signals are still on...

Marc D
12-03-2007, 02:42 PM
And it shouldn't have to be up to the police to enforce the lane issue.

My guess would be a bill like this is just a way to make sure people are made aware of the issue. Playing a PSA with a threat from the law is going to make more people take notice and it will create discussions like this one. Just playing a few actual PSAs that mention the issue isn't going to do near as much good.

If Florida had put out a PSA asking people to be courteous, we wouldn't be discussing it right now.


They run a pretty aggressive PSA campaign down here telling people not to use a gun in a violent crime but they do it anyway.

Relying on peoples courtesy is the reason we have a problem in the first place.

TeamCasey
12-03-2007, 02:48 PM
Speed limit is 65.

Someone is in left lane going 65.

Someone approaches going 80.

Ticket is awarded to whom?

Chip R
12-03-2007, 02:50 PM
Speed limit is 65.

Someone is in left lane going 65.

Someone approaches going 80.

Ticket is awarded to whom?


President Eisenhower? ;)

MaineRed
12-03-2007, 02:53 PM
Speed limit is 65.

Someone is in left lane going 65.

Someone approaches going 80.

Ticket is awarded to whom?

Well the middle finger gets extended to the guy going 65.

In all seriousness, in most cases, nobody gets a ticket. 80 might be pushing it but I think just below 80 is tolerated in most places.

Which is the exact reason the idiot on the left going 65 has the potential to cause such serious issues.

macro
12-03-2007, 02:57 PM
President Eisenhower? ;)

Chip, that is the funniest thing I've read or heard all day. Thanks.

:lol:

BRM
12-03-2007, 03:00 PM
Well the middle finger gets extended to the guy going 65.


If he's lucky it's only the middle finger.

TeamCasey
12-03-2007, 03:07 PM
Well the middle finger gets extended to the guy going 65.

In all seriousness, in most cases, nobody gets a ticket. 80 might be pushing it but I think just below 80 is tolerated in most places.
Which is the exact reason the idiot on the left going 65 has the potential to cause such serious issues.

Tolerated, but in fact, against the law.

I agree with all of you who say that the left lane is for passing. I think it's the reasoning of this bill that gets me. Disregard the speed limit because some angry people can't control themselves ..... so let's give the keys to the inmates in the asylum.

Roy Tucker
12-03-2007, 03:13 PM
This always has been one of my pet peeves. If all drivers were to use the lanes available appropriately, traffic would flow much better. But people don't. Many times, people are oblivious to faster traffic in the left-hand lane, people avoid the right-hand lane because of some social stigma, etc etc.

Waaaay too many times, I've had to resort to passing on the right or perform some broken-field running to get through a clump of slow moving traffic that I've followed for 5-10 miles with no apparent reason for the slowness.

I do find the term “aggressive careless driving” curious.

MaineRed
12-03-2007, 03:14 PM
I wouldn't support the bill because of the crazy people. I would support it because it helps traffic flow and because people seem totally unaware of how to use the freeway system or any road that has double lanes for that matter.

Speeders are just an easy way to help pay for law enforcement and they give police something to do while they wait for something serious to happen. Driving around and seeing who the person is that is slowing down the traffic flow would be too much to ask. Hiding in the woods and nabbing unsuspecting drivers is the better way to go :rolleyes:.

MaineRed
12-03-2007, 03:18 PM
I hate having to be the guy weaving in and out of traffic but if people can't get themselves into the correct lane why should I hang out behind them? When there are four lanes I find you make just as good a time in the far RIGHT lane as you can the left. Then when you need to pass you can do it the way you are supposed to, on the left.

You also blend in better on the left. If I want to go 75 and someone wants to go 90, I don't want them behind me, I want them out in front. If there is a cop up ahead waiting for the right person to nab, it will be them. Then you just drive by and wave. Much better point than holding them and acting as the roads safety official.

pahster
12-03-2007, 03:18 PM
Well the middle finger gets extended to the guy going 65.

In all seriousness, in most cases, nobody gets a ticket. 80 might be pushing it but I think just below 80 is tolerated in most places.

Which is the exact reason the idiot on the left going 65 has the potential to cause such serious issues.

So the individual going 80 holds no responsibility for keeping their own anger in check? Sounds perfectly rational to me.

MaineRed
12-03-2007, 03:21 PM
My comments, none of them in this thread have anything to do with anyone having to keep their anger in check. I'm talking traffic flow and traffic flow only.

pahster
12-03-2007, 03:26 PM
My comments, none of them in this thread have anything to do with anyone having to keep their anger in check. I'm talking traffic flow and traffic flow only.

Huh?


Out on the interstate it is crazy to think you just cruise down the left lane going 65. But people do it. And they are the ones responsible for more road rage than everything else combined I bet.

Perhaps I've misconstrued your point...

In any case, if the speed limit is 65 (and I'm assuming this is the case in your scenario), and someone is driving along at 65 in the left hand lane, they wouldn't be disrupting the flow of traffic for anyone other than those who are speeding.

MaineRed
12-03-2007, 03:35 PM
Like I said, I'm not so much worried about the road ragers. But I do believe this issue causes a lot of it. I should have said my concern is not the road rage as I did mention it.

Speeding to me is such a loose term and I think it is a major problem that people think going 65 in the left lane "only disrupts those who are speeding".

We don't live in a 65 MPH highway system society, no matter what those signs say.

pahster
12-03-2007, 03:40 PM
Speeding to me is such a loose term and I think it is a major problem that people think going 65 in the left lane "only disrupts those who are speeding".

We don't live in a 65 MPH highway system society, no matter what those signs say.

You're speeding whenever you drive faster than the posted limit. There's nothing "loose" about it. Those limits are there for a reason.

smith288
12-03-2007, 03:43 PM
pahster, post something else...your post count scares me...

smith288
12-03-2007, 03:43 PM
What are multiple lanes for if everyone drove exactly 65?

OldRightHander
12-03-2007, 03:45 PM
It's not just the speeders who are disrupted by left lane slowpokes. Emergency vehicles, police, etc. need to have that lane as open as possible so they're not impeded when they need to get somewhere in a hurry. The other day I observed an ambulance that kept having to slow down and wait for some moron to get over.

Another issue that I think partially leads to this problem is the split speed limits in some states requiring trucks to go 10 mph slower. A lot of people don't like driving behind trucks so they will get over into the left lane just to get out from behind the truck but then won't bother going fast enough to pass the truck and get back over. Either that or folks just stay left because of the number of trucks in the right hand lanes. Let the trucks go the same speed as the cars and you'll take care of some of the congestion as well.

pahster
12-03-2007, 03:47 PM
What are multiple lanes for if everyone drove exactly 65?

Sorry about the post count. :p:

They're for passing traffic driving below the speed limit. You're permitted to drive a certain ammount below the speed limit. Not sure what it is. I'm sure it varies by state. Maybe 15ish mph under the posted speed limit?

pahster
12-03-2007, 03:50 PM
It's not just the speeders who are disrupted by left lane slowpokes. Emergency vehicles, police, etc. need to have that lane as open as possible so they're not impeded when they need to get somewhere in a hurry. The other day I observed an ambulance that kept having to slow down and wait for some moron to get over.

Good point. In a vaacum though, I would think all of these 65 mph drivers would be in the right hand lane anyway. If everyone's going the same speed, the only ones who would need the left lane would be emergency vehicles.

OldRightHander
12-03-2007, 03:59 PM
Good point. In a vaacum though, I would think all of these 65 mph drivers would be in the right hand lane anyway. If everyone's going the same speed, the only ones who would need the left lane would be emergency vehicles.

You also have a fair number of cars travelling below the posted limit, especially in states with a 70 mph limit. Then the issue becomes more one of courtesy. I was coming east on I-20 the other day (going from Dallas to Shreveport) and I encountered several cars going below 70 in a 70 mph zone. I had my cruise on 68 and was keeping to the right lane, and I was still having to get over to pass people occasionally.

pahster
12-03-2007, 04:13 PM
You also have a fair number of cars travelling below the posted limit, especially in states with a 70 mph limit. Then the issue becomes more one of courtesy. I was coming east on I-20 the other day (going from Dallas to Shreveport) and I encountered several cars going below 70 in a 70 mph zone. I had my cruise on 68 and was keeping to the right lane, and I was still having to get over to pass people occasionally.

That's a legitimate gripe. I live in Missouri where the speed limit is also 70, which is what I drive. I rarely have to pass more than one or two people on the highway. Virtually everyone else passes me. Maybe that's a cultural/regional issue, I don't know.

OldRightHander
12-03-2007, 04:17 PM
That's a legitimate gripe. I live in Missouri where the speed limit is also 70, which is what I drive. I rarely have to pass more than one or two people on the highway. Virtually everyone else passes me. Maybe that's a cultural/regional issue, I don't know.

I've been through your neck of the woods several times recently and I haven't noticed too many slow people. I keep my cruise between 68-70 and usually everyone is blowing by me. It's those slower people that baffle me. If you really can't drive over 60, what are you doing on the interstate? There are plenty of secondary roads that run parallel to the interstate where you can drive slower.

MaineRed
12-03-2007, 04:42 PM
You're speeding whenever you drive faster than the posted limit. There's nothing "loose" about it. Those limits are there for a reason.

I don't know where police have a policy to enforce those signs that say 65. The do enforce it a little more strictly when people push the limits. I think those speed limit numbers are quite loose when it comes to the typical state trooper. Just don't push it.

Anyone here have a ticket for going 66 in a a 65?

remdog
12-03-2007, 05:11 PM
Anyone here have a ticket for going 66 in a a 65?

Better question: anyone here have a ticket for going 40 in a 65 mph zone? :eek:

Rem

paintmered
12-03-2007, 05:54 PM
My biggest pet peeve is the semi truck that does 55-60 in the middle lane, and it's becoming much more common than even 3 years ago.

I like to cruise around 68-70 on the interstate. I don't like to do anything over 75, period. My vehicle isn't cut out for that.

I've noticed that many drivers in the left lane on I-675 do at least 75 (usually around 80). So I'm either the schmuck holding up the aggressive speeders in the left lane or the schmuck passing the truck on the right. I'm not sure which is less dangerous.

pahster
12-03-2007, 05:56 PM
I don't know where police have a policy to enforce those signs that say 65. The do enforce it a little more strictly when people push the limits. I think those speed limit numbers are quite loose when it comes to the typical state trooper. Just don't push it.

Anyone here have a ticket for going 66 in a a 65?

My mom once got a ticket for 36 in a 35, but that was on a military base. That's certainly not representative, though.

The police have a duty to enforce the law, but they are permitted to utilize discretion in doing so. If they started giving tickets to everyone going 1 mph over the limit, they'd miss an awful lot of the many more egregious offenders. Quite frankly, it would be silly to give people tickets for going one over. Not everyone has cruise control.

MaineRed
12-03-2007, 06:12 PM
Isn't that the definition of a "loose" speed limit?

pahster
12-03-2007, 06:29 PM
Isn't that the definition of a "loose" speed limit?

No. The police are within their rights to give you a ticket for going one over. I doubt you find many who will, though. That certainly doesn't make speeding "okay", though it's certainly socially acceptable to most.

I think a sociological study on attitudes about speeding would be a fascinating read. I'm sure several have been done. I might dig around a bit for one.

Dom Heffner
12-03-2007, 07:22 PM
Speed limit is 65.

Someone is in left lane going 65.

Someone approaches going 80.

Ticket is awarded to whom?


Both. If the person in the left lane is not passing someone, they are breaking the law, no matter their speed.

While I don't want the roads filled with people going 90 mph, I also don't need the old "10 and 2" hall monitor to keep the speed down on the interstate by going 65 in the left lane.

Here's the deal: if you want to be the good citizen and never speed, get over in the right lane. People who sit in the left lane going 65 with the attitude that they shouldn't get over because somebody else shouldn't be going faster than 65 are just as dangerous as anybody out there.

I love this law because if you want to speed you still run the risk of getting caught, and you also get the benefit of getting the slow pokes out of the way.

With our elderly population here in Florida, they should have made this the law a long time ago.

WebScorpion
12-04-2007, 04:20 PM
Anyone here have a ticket for going 66 in a a 65?

No, but I got a ticket for going 59 in a 55 on route 32 just after I crossed the Brown County line with Virginia plates on my car. I'm pretty sure the ticket had more to do with my plates than my speed. :rolleyes:

When I first started dating my current wife, she would go directly to the left lane and stay there until she was ready to exit, no matter what speed she was going or how many cars were on the road. When I asked why she did it, she said that she didn't like to change lanes...this way she only had to change lanes twice and everyone else could just go around her. Needless to say, she responded to my constant harrassing and harping and will now only use the left lane for PASSING. Apparently, no one had ever explained the concept to her. :eek:

remdog
12-04-2007, 05:08 PM
When I first started dating my current wife,.....

Planning others? :p:

Rem

remdog
12-04-2007, 05:09 PM
I'd like to see some thoughts on this from D-man, considering his profession.

Rem

TeamSelig
12-04-2007, 06:14 PM
Radar has a +/- 3 margin of error, so most stay away from that if I remember correctly. I don't have any stats but I would be willing to bet that about 90% of officers won't ticket until they have reached 10 mph over.. with the obvious exceptions of school roads and in a busy town.

Razor Shines
12-07-2007, 11:50 PM
Radar has a +/- 3 margin of error, so most stay away from that if I remember correctly. I don't have any stats but I would be willing to bet that about 90% of officers won't ticket until they have reached 10 mph over.. with the obvious exceptions of school roads and in a busy town.

I think that's right. I have a friend who's an officer and he told me to remember on the highway most cops go by "9 you're fine, 10 you're mine."

oneupper
12-08-2007, 05:17 PM
Both. If the person in the left lane is not passing someone, they are breaking the law, no matter their speed.



Not so. Here in Florida the left lane is NOT designated as a passing lane only (it's a travel lane). They would probably have to do THAT first before pushing through something else.

Can't talk for all of the state but in South Florida our highways are so busy, you almost need for the left lane to be a travel lane to spread out the traffic.

Heck, I-95 is an urban highway practically from Jacksonville to Miami.

WebScorpion
12-10-2007, 09:30 AM
I think that's right. I have a friend who's an officer and he told me to remember on the highway most cops go by "9 you're fine, 10 you're mine."

I usually go by this rule myself. I've actually cruised through a few speed traps (didn't see them until it was too late) at 64mph in a 55 and not gotten stopped. In a 65mph (or 70) I won't usually cruise at 74 (or 79) just because the gas mileage at those speeds is too costly...on a long drive (3 hours or more) it makes a noticable difference.

Dom Heffner
12-10-2007, 10:41 AM
Not so. Here in Florida the left lane is NOT designated as a passing lane only (it's a travel lane). They would probably have to do THAT first before pushing through something else.



I was speaking in terms of if this law were passed. I thought the question posed was a hypothetical.