New law could mean trouble for left lane drivers

New law could mean trouble for left lane drivers
Updated: Jul. 2, 2018 at 7:16 PM CDT
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MISSISSIPPI (WDAM) - A new law has taken effect in Mississippi meant to discourage vehicles from riding in the left lane.

Many people say they are in support of the new law.

"I've been wanting a law like this for a long time and I think it'll make everyone's commute through the state a lot faster," said driver Kelly Cash.

The new law states that a vehicle shall not be driven in the outermost left lane of any roadway with four or more lanes allowing for movement of traffic in the same direction. Mississippi Highway Patrol Trooper Travis Luck said the law is all about promoting safety on highways.

"So when people use this law and obey this law, it'll help the flow of traffic in all regards," Luck said.

Driver Lacy Broom said she's excited for the law because it's frustrating when there's an emergency, but slow drivers hog the left lane.

"Not too long ago I was needing to get my son to the emergency room," Broom said. "There was a lot of traffic in the left lane that was going below the speed limit. Even though I had my flashers on, nobody would get over in the right lane."

The law states that vehicles can be driven in the left lane in order to pass another vehicle, if the right lane is closed or unsafe or if you're preparing to make a left turn.

Luck said that according to law, you can still drive in the left lane as long as you are not slowing down traffic, but violators will be punished.

"When you travel in the left lane and continuously travel in it and basically camp out in the left lane, it causes traffic hazards," said Luck. "The left lane traveling and getting complacent, it causes traffic congestion."

Fines will be anywhere from $5 to $50.

Some people feel that fines are unnecessary.

"I don't feel that you should get a ticket for it or it should be a law, but common sense should tell you this is a passing lane," driver Melanie McDonald said. "So let's not ride in the passing lane."

Luck said the law is also beneficial to law enforcement officials and emergency crews. He said they often use the left lane to reach their destination quicker in the event of an emergency.

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