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Driving Too Slowly in The Left Lane? Soon There May be a Fine for That

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 4/22/2015 Kelly Pleskot
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We've all been there. You're driving in the left lane and find yourself stuck behind a slowpoke and unable to move over. Now, Washington state is proposing a fix to that problem with a new bill that would penalize drivers who drive slower than the speed limit in the fast lane.

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The bill, proposed by Sen. Michael Baumgartner (R-Spokane), would impose Ferrari $3.5 Million for Failing to Submit Reports" target="_blank">fines for even the smallest variations in speed. Drivers could receive a $27 fine for traveling between 1 and 5 mph under the speed limit in the left lane. The fine gradually increases to $37 for driving 6 to 10 mph below the speed limit; $52 for speeds 11 to 15 mph under the limit; and $67 for speeds 16 to 20 mph under the limit.

Perhaps this bill comes as no surprise to many people, considering Washington already has strict rules for left lane driving. It's already illegal to drive in the left lane unless you are passing another car, preparing to exit to the left, or allowing another vehicle to merge. That means that for those who travel under the speed limit in the left lane, not only will they be fined up to that $67 limit, but they could also receive a $124 fine for continuous left lane driving.

Ironically, cruising too slowly in the left lane for long periods of time is categorized under the umbrella of "aggravated left lane driving" according to documents. The bill says that driving too slow in the left lane is "obnoxious, inconsiderate, and dangerous behavior."

"Those who persist in driving continuously in the left lane of traffic at a rate of speed that impedes the flow of other traffic continue to create safety hazards," the bill reads. "Such actions can cause other drivers to brake unexpectedly or create a long line of frustrated drivers. This in turn can cause other drivers to engage in unsafe and illegal conduct, such as tailgating or passing the slower vehicle in the right lane."

We'd venture to say that most people think there should be some penalty for traveling way below normal speeds in the left lane. But should it be an offense to travel just 1 mph under the speed limit? And should this law be applied to other states across the U.S.? Let us know in the comments below.

Source: KING 5 News, KNDO-KNDU Tri-Cities

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