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Rutherford targets slow drivers in the left lane

Tuesday, April 8, 2003 Posted 11:00 a.m.
Springfield - Senator Dan Rutherford is tackling on of the biggest pet peeves of drivers throughout Illinois - slow drivers in the left lane. Rutherford (R-Pontiac) is sponsoring House Bill 1574 to encourage safer and more courteous driving on Illinois highways.

-Drivers who travel slowly in the left lane cause more problems than simply annoying the drivers who want to pass other vehicles, they create traffic congestion and unsafe conditions on our highways,- said Rutherford. -Sadly, the threat of a $75 fine will do more to encourage safe and courteous driving in the left lane than simply telling people it is the law.-

Illinois law already states that on Interstate highways a vehicle may not be driven in the left lane, except when overtaking and passing another vehicle. Still many drivers ignore this law and drive at slow speeds in the left lane, creating traffic congestion and decreasing safety.

House Bill 1574 would still prohibit drivers from driving in the left lane on Interstate highways except when overtaking and passing another vehicle. The proposed law also states specific situations where it is appropriate to drive in the left lane, including when no other vehicle is directly behind or when traffic or weather conditions make it necessary.

Rutherford indicates the clarifications of when it is appropriate to use the left lane will make it easier for law enforcement to issue tickets for driving slow in the left lane.

House Bill 1574 has already gained approval (99-13-4) in the House of Representatives. The Senate is expected to begin action on house bills this week.