When can big rigs travel in the left lane in Florida? Trooper Steve explains

Steve Montiero answers viewers questions about Florida’s traffic laws

News 6 traffic safety expert Trooper Steve Montiero answers viewer questions and shares tips about the rules of the road, helping Central Florida residents become better drivers by being better educated.

Trooper Steve was asked, “Are tractor-trailer cabs allowed to drive in the left lane if they remove their trailer and not hauling anything?”

To answer this question, Trooper Steve takes a look at the bigger picture of semi-trucks traveling on Florida’s roads.

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“I totally understand why this question is being asked but I also believe it’s because of confusion of certain signs that we see out on the roads,” Montiero said. “When traveling on major multilane highways throughout the state of Florida, there are areas that restrict trucks from driving in the left lane, but these restrictions are only located in those areas for those trucks. In all other spots, these vehicles are treated the exact same as yours and mine.”

Trooper Steve added, “Whether the truck has a trailer attached to it as long as there are no signs restricting that specific vehicle in the left lane then that vehicle would be allowed to travel in the left lane.”

Montiero did point out that all drivers should avoid abusing the left lane.

“Now, I will add that anyone, no matter what you’re driving, should avoid being in the left lane as often as possible. The left lane is designed for passing slower traffic and by staying in the right lane you leave an open for other vehicles and of course emergency travel,” he said. “So, whether that truck has a trailer attached to it or not as long as there is no sign restricting them from the left lane they would be allowed to travel as they choose.”

About the Authors:

Thomas Mates is a digital storyteller for News 6 and ClickOrlando.com. He also produces the podcast Florida Foodie. Thomas is originally from Northeastern Pennsylvania and worked in Portland, Oregon before moving to Central Florida in August 2018. He graduated from Temple University with a degree in Journalism in 2010.

Steven Montiero, better known as “Trooper Steve," joined the News 6 morning team as its Traffic Safety Expert in October 2017. A Central Florida native and decorated combat veteran, Montiero comes to the station following an eight-year assignment with the Florida Highway Patrol.