Skip to comments.Opponents say pass to proposed 'Road Rage Reduction Act' (GET OUT OF THE LEFT LANE!)
Posted on 04/08/2005 6:29:31 AM PDT by RedBloodedAmerican
TALLAHASSEE -- Slowpokes could get a $60 fine for hogging the fast lane and ticking off motorists who want to pass.
The "Road Rage Reduction Act" is speeding through the Legislature following a 27-10 vote in the Senate on Thursday, two days after the House passed a similar bill by an even wider margin, 109-4. A spokesman for Gov. Jeb Bush said the governor must still evaluate the issue.
The bill requires drivers to stay in the right lane unless they're passing a vehicle or making a left turn. Supporters -- including the Florida Sheriffs Association and Florida Police Benevolent Association -- said the bill would ease traffic flow and make it unnecessary for motorists to dangerously maneuver around slower moving vehicles.
Opponents, including Sen. Evelyn Lynn, R-Ormond Beach, said the bill's emphasis on slower drivers was misplaced.
"We should have our police catching all the offenders of speeding," Lynn pleaded on the Senate floor.
In addition to the proposed fine, the bill calls for a three-point penalty on a driver's record (motorists who accumulate 12 points can lose their license). Bill sponsor Mike Bennett, R-Bradenton, had pitched a four-point penalty but critics said it should be less than the four points assessed to reckless drivers.
The proposed law would allow for many exceptions to the right lane rule, such as using the left lane to avoid hydro-planing in a rain storm or to dodge debris in the roadway. Plus, it doesn't apply when there's no one else on the road.
"You can drive from (Tallahassee) to Miami as long as there's no one behind you," Bennett said.
Still, Sen. Rod Smith, D-Gainesville, called it a "traffic ticket enhancement" act, and Rep. Irv Slosberg, D-Boca Raton, one of the few opponents in the House, said it would increase speeding.
Local motorists were mixed in their reaction to the proposal.
Terry Carter, 26, of Holly Hill liked the idea of separating lanes for faster and slower drivers: "Most older people go slow. I have problems when I get cut off by an older person," Carter said.
Donna Parks, 48, of Volusia County said the bill was necessary: "All truck drivers should be in the right lane. Once when I was merging onto the interstate a truck driver was going so slow he almost ran me off the road," she said.
Naamon Lewis of Holly Hill, though, had doubts.
"We got a lot of people that hog that left lane, but I don't know about making a law," Lewis said. "Good gracious. I don't necessarily agree with the fine and (three) points off your license. I think that's stepping a little too far."
-- Staff Writer Eileen Zaffiro contributed to this report.
SIGNS YOU MIGHT BE AN AGGRESSIVE DRIVER
· Do you get angry at drivers who cut you off, tailgate or go slowly?
· Are you impatient at stoplights or when driving in the slow (right) lane?
· Do you compete with other drivers, drag racing from stoplights or moving ahead in traffic jams?
· Do you punish bad drivers by tailgating, cursing, flashing high-beam headlights or blocking drivers attempting to pass?
SOURCE: Adapted from AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety aggressive driving quiz at www.aaafoundation.org/quizzes
Driving in the left (passing) lane with your turn signal blinking while going 20mph below the posted speed limit for miles and miles is the norm in Florida, where the average age is 72 and the average speed is 12mph
I thought it was a basic rule of the road that if you're not passing, you move out of the passing lane. To tell the truth though, I am much more annoyed at people who pass on the right than those who fail to do so on the left.
Isn't that thre same thing?
Talk about misplaced panic...
At least one thing we can say about the speeders is most are competent drivers! Can't say the same for the deliberate obstructionists of the #1 lane.
Wish we had this law in California.
1. Driver in front of you whom you can't pass = Stupid SOB.
2. Driver behind you wanting to pass = Crazy Bastard.
When I took my first Florida driving test years ago, it was the rule.
I don't know why they are passing more laws instead of enforcing the ones they have already, if that rule is in fact law and still exists.
This law makes a lot of sense to me, but be prepared for FR's own left lane vigilantes to start spamming the thread with, "If I'm going the speed limit, I should be able to drive in whatever lane I want to! Why should I let other people break the law?"
Bumper sticker: "Don't tailgate me; I drive like you!"
Always has been, and it's universally ignored. And it will continue to be ignored until a penalty is attached.
After 100 years, maybe we should try something different. I will grant you that the dumbell who approaches at 100 mph and passes on the right before you have a chance to move over should be shot, beaten, hanged, drawn and quartered and fined.
No, a driver can see a car passing on the left more easily than one on the right, since you sit in the left side of the car. A left-lane slowpoke can slow you down, but at least you can see him. A right-lane passer risks an accident every time he does so, since he comes right out of one's blind spot, against the rules of the road.
It's funny, but I have noticed more people respecting left-lane passing rules in the past few years, at least in the New York metro area.
Wanna make a few extra bucks as the insane Road Rage poster boy?
By the way, do you support the proposed law?
This is a terrible idea, absolutely horrible. First off, regardless of age, the average speed in FloriDUH is 20 MPH above the posted limit. And, God help you if you get in the way of a 19 year-old with a souped up Honda and a muffler that sounds like a hive of bees farting.
But, what makes it worse is that the citizens of FloriDUH PAID for 4 or more lanes to be able to use them to increase traffic flow and decrease congestion. What this law will do is increase the number of road rage incidents by increasing the amount of traffic in the right-hand lane(s) which already have a restriction on them that if a police or emergency vehicle is on the side of the road, you are required to vacate the adjacent lane in order to pass the emergency vehicle. So, what happens if you are toodling along in the right hand lane obeying the law and you happen upon an emergency vehicle on the side of the road? You move into the left lane, as the law requires, and suddenly find yourself getting a ticket for obeying the law!! Why is it that I have an image of Rod Serling wishing he had dreamed this one up for the Twilight Zone before he died!!??
The question becomes a legalistic nightmare for motorists AND cops. On the one hand, the cops are supposed to enforce the speed limits but, based on this law, they must selectively ignore the speed limit and ticket the person obeying the law but occupying the left lane.
Without a doubt, FloriDUH is rapidly becoming one of the stupidest states in America and idiotic laws like this is the reason why. The new state slogan should be: "Refining Stupidity to an Art Form".
Hopefully, Jeb will exercise a little common sense and veto this POC legislation when it comes to his desk.
But, then, if Greer issues a court order preventing him from vetoing it, he'll have no choice but to sign, won't he?
My leftist sister is a die-hard, left-lane vigilante. She loves to plant herself there doing 55 because she believes that no one needs to go faster than that.
If she gets one of these tickets, I'm gonna bronze the dang thing and hang it on my wall!
LOL at this one! Never heard the sound those mufflers make described so accurately.
BUMP for place