HUNTSVILLE, Ala – A new law is coming to Alabama’s roadways this summer. Governor Kay Ivey signed the Anti-Road Rage Act. It only allows drivers to use the left lane on the interstate to pass other drivers.
In 2017 alone, more than 50 thousand crashes with injuries were reported in Alabama. Nearly 1,000 wrecks were fatal. Officials with the Alabama Department of Transportation want to see those numbers go down.
They say the ‘Anti-Road Rage Act’ could help because riding in the left lane can create traffic problems.
“Driving in the left lanes…We’re seeing that it actually makes the faster drivers weave in and out of traffic changing lanes,” said Allison Green, Drive Safe Alabama coordinator.
Greeb says that behavior creates up to ten percent of total crashes. According to a study by AAA, 80% of drivers surveyed reported feeling angry or aggressive when left lane drivers wouldn’t move over.
“We want to make sure everyone has a cool and even temper on the roadways because that road rage does contribute to crashes that we seeing in our state,” she said.
The new law doesn’t go into effect until September 1, but some say now is the time to turn your blinker to the right, move over, and get used to not being able to spend as much time in the left lane.
The new law provides some exceptions, but for the most part, will allow drivers to only be in the left lane for a mile and a half if they are not passing other vehicles.
Representative Phillip Pettus out of Lauderdale County sponsored the bill. He says staying in the passing lane too long will come at a cost. The penalty will be similar to a speeding ticket including a fine somewhere close to $200.
Drivers will have a 60 day grace period after the law goes into effect. For the first two months, troopers will be giving drivers just a warning for violating the ‘Anti-Road Rage Act’.