Why don’t slow left-lane drivers get tickets?

Trooper Steve says blame motorists, not cops

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

Susan on Thursday asked Trooper Steve, “Why aren’t impeding traffic violations enforced? They stay in the left lane forever.”

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Susan’s frustration is pretty obvious in the way she asked her question.

“Blaming law enforcement is not the answer,” Trooper Steve said. “There is some truth to the common expression, ‘Where is a cop when you need one?’ But that is not the justification as to why we have drivers not following the law.”

If a driver is in the left lane on a multilane highway, they would be required to be in the right lane if it is clear.

“This would apply even if they were the only car out on the roadway,” Trooper Steve said. “The big frustration begins when a driver is in that left lane running parallel with other drivers, not allowing other traffic to pass.”

Even if you are a driver doing the exact speed limit next to another driver in the travel lane doing the exact speed limit, you should try to vacate the left lane, if possible, he added.

“I completely understand that when there is gridlock traffic it is close to impossible for all drivers to leave that left lane,” Trooper Steve said. “What I don’t like is the passive-aggressiveness of assuming it is a police officer’s job to educate and constantly maintain what should be a responsible driver.”

Most of the time, a driver in the left lane is oblivious to the fact that they are impeding traffic.

“This is of no fault of a police officer, only the driver,” he added. “Yes, our police officers are tasked with enforcing negligence on the roadway, but we should not rely on them to constantly enforce for such minor responsibilities.”

If you have a traffic question for Trooper Steve, email him at asktroopersteve@wkmg.com.

About the Author:

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.