Slow driver? Get out of the left lane
If you are not attempting to pass a vehicle, or are attempting to be passed by another, get out of the left lane. It is conceded that traffic congestion will only get worse in our fine county while we are plagued with only two lanes of traffic in each direction for a majority of the “super highway” U.S. 301.
Weekend congestion and bypassers from other states further aggravate our daily commute. A single tractor trailer negotiating a plethora of Christmas tree lights reduces the crawl to one lane of viable travel. With a “cherry on top,” what makes it all unbearable is the casual — and often indifferent — left lane traveler determined to disrupt and deter the most hopeful driver.
Well, are there laws to protect us against such behavior? Maryland Law (Annotated Code of Maryland, Transportation Article Section 21-301) requires slower traffic to keep to the right. As a courtesy, drivers in the left lane should always yield to faster traffic, regardless of the passing car’s speed or other factors. More simply stated, if you are not trying to pass a vehicle to the left, or someone is attempting to get by you in the left lane, simply move your vehicle to the right and “slow lane.” It’s a novel concept — and it works.
U.S. 301 has become paralyzed by the act of inconsiderate drivers camped out in the left lane. You simply do not have the absolute right to travel the left lane; just like there is no absolute right to free speech (yelling “fire” in a crowded theater). Justifying left lane travel by requiring a left turn 3 miles down the road is embarrassing.
People complain about road rage, but are often themselves the guilty party. We mistakenly focus on the end result and not the causal relationship between the two acts. How many times have you witnessed the flashing lights? The blow of a horn? Or even a daring pass to the right to get around a vehicle in the left lane determined to impede the flow of traffic? Please tell me, who here is the rude one?
Let us be considerate, keep the flow of traffic open, and I assure you, road rage will be diminished.
William M. Burgess, La Plata