We all learned long ago that the left lane is for passing. Once you have done so, you should move back into the right lane as a courtesy to other drivers so that they may pass. The world works very well when everyone follows rules, both written and unwritten ones for that matter. A bill just passed the House and is pending in the state Senate which is looking to turn an unwritten rule into a written one. Yes, driving slowly in the left lane might soon result in a fine upwards of $250 in the State of Maryland if certain legislators get their way. The bill was introduced by William Folden, R-Frederick, who is himself a police officer and knows a thing or two about traffic enforcement. Many across the state have already expressed tremendous joy at the idea.
One group who has expressed concern, however, is AAA Mid Atlantic. In short, their thought is that this bill tells drivers that the left lane is for speeding and if you do not intend on speeding, get out. It is important to note that nearly one third of all fatal vehicle accidents involve speeding.
That said, Mr. Folden’s point seems to be that all laws related to our highways should be about safety. We have all seen folks react in unsafe ways to being held up by someone doing 50 in the left lane of a 55 mph roadway. Passing on the right, weaving, a few middle fingers and worse may result. It’s not difficult to see both sides of this debate. It will be interesting to see what happens in the Senate.