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Georgia 'Slow-Poke Bill' Wins Speedy Passage, Waiting Governor's Signature

The bill awaiting Gov. Deal's signature would require motorists to get out of the left lane when a faster car approaches from behind.

Drivers could be ticketed for driving too slow in the left lane under a Georgia bill. File|Patch
Drivers could be ticketed for driving too slow in the left lane under a Georgia bill. File|Patch
By Scott Bernarde and Deb Belt

Left-lane “slow pokes” who back up traffic behind them need to speed up or get out of the way.

If legislation that was easily passed in the Georgia Senate Tuesday becomes law, it will be a misdemeanor not to move out of the left lane when a faster vehicle is approaching from behind.

Rep. Bill Hitchens, author of House Bill 459, told the AJC, “Everybody knows this is the slow-poke bill.”

The bill was approved 162-9 last month in the House and approved Tuesday on on a 42-5 vote in the Senate, the newspaper reports. All it needs is Gov. Nathan Deal’s signature to become law.

Violators could face misdemeanor penalties of no more than $1,000 in fines and up to a year in prison, says USA Today.

John Bowman, a spokesman for the National Motorists Association, approves of the measure. "I think most states do have some law on their books that attempts to limit slower drivers from using the left lane," he says. "It really does make sense. And it's an issue we've been pushing for a long time."

The bill reads, in part:

“No person shall drive a motor vehicle at such a slow speed as to impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic, except when reduced speed is necessary for safe operation.”

Read the entire bill here

Hitchens, from Rincon, Ga., admitted enforcing the law would be difficult, but likened the intent to the “good manners your mother should have taught you.”

He said removing situations like a long back-up behind a slower car in the left lane could diminish “the spark that ignites road rage.”

What Do You Think?

Should there be a law requiring left-lane drivers to get out of the way of faster vehicles? Tell us in the comments below.

stephen m george jr mpa March 18, 2014 at 07:03 PM
First, you give yourself far too much credit Ron ... ; second, why so nasty Ron ... ? Third, it appears your beef with me is that you have no power to sensor the media ... . And fourth, review Georgia House Resolution 1444, which can be found at http://www.legis.ga.gov/Legislation/20032004/35920.pdf ... And fifth, be aware I am the author. Quote that!
Ron Schad March 19, 2014 at 07:22 AM
I have no beef with you stephen m george jr mpa. It's your brains poor choice of words depicting the idiotic behavior of some drivers. Enough of this sparring, Good Bye.....
Lee Hanson March 19, 2014 at 11:57 AM
If I am going the speed limit of higher in the left lane and a faster car gets on my bumper flashing for right of way, I am not moving. And I will object in traffic court if I am ticketing under this new law. Bet I win.
stephen m george jr mpa March 19, 2014 at 12:19 PM
But Ron ... you went out of your way to be rude and nasty to me ... hence, whether you realized it or not, you actually made the challenge which led to the so called sparring match ...and now you want to throw in the towel ... ? I don't blame you, it's always wise to get your ducks in a row BEFORE you start a "wee wee", also known to adult men as a "pissing", contest. Hallelujah ...and praise be to the freedom of the press ... and to that of academic freedom! "When society gives censors wide and vague powers, they never confine themselves to deserving targets. They are not snipers, but machine-gunners. Allow them to fire at will, and they will hit anything that moves." (Nick Cohen).
Tangela Hamlin Beard July 01, 2014 at 12:08 PM
Get ready for a lot of road rage and accidents. Some drivers don't give you enough room to get over. It gets bad out there on the interstate sometimes. And the two-lane highways are getting that way too. I advise all of the GSP....and all Funeral homes to get ready. The Gun Law.....now the Slow Poke Law....WHAT NEXT ?? JUST BE CAREFUL OUT THERE ! SMH ! # Jesus take the wheel. Watch over ALL OF US !

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