We all know the feelings brought on by the keeper of the speed—that person who insists on driving ten miles per hour under the speed limit while in the passing lane on the interstate. Annoyance. Frustration. Impatience. Increased blood pressure. Flashing headlights, honking horns, hand gestures—nothing seems to convince these drivers to move to the right to allow faster moving traffic to proceed. Then there are the 18-wheelers who move into the passing lane as they start up a long, gradual incline. Really?!! Not only are these behaviors frustrating and annoying, creating long lines of traffic and significant delays, but they can be extremely dangerous as they set up the potential for multiple-car chain reaction collisions.
These bad driving habits have been against the law in Virginia for years, but the 2017 General Assembly passed a bill to add some teeth to the law. Under the new law, drivers may be fined $250.00 for driving in the left lane, unless it is to pass another vehicle or make a left turn. The bill passed in both the House and the Senate, and is now awaiting Governor Terry McAuliffe’s signature. While Gov. McAuliffe’s prefers a lower fine ($100.00), there is little doubt that the law will be enacted.
Remember—aggressive driving is also against the law and very dangerous. Even if there are still slower drivers in the left lane, keep your cool and stay safe.