Southtowne Motors’ Lesson of the Day: The Left Lane

How long has it been since you taken a driving course? Unless you’ve had to take some sort of defensive driving class for a traffic violation, then I’m guessing it’s probably been awhile, unless you are a certain someone at Southtowne GM who will remain nameless. I swear, 98 percent of the population thinks that they are an amazing driver. Then you have the other two percent who will willingly admit they are terrible drivers and even go on shows like America’s Worst Drivers. (Pretty entertaining show by the way – check it out if you haven’t seen it.)
Imagine a world where everyone remembers every single thing they learned from driver’s ed and applied it to their everyday driving. Pretty sure we’d see a significant drop in cases of road rage. I’m a realistic person, though, and I know that will never happen. But in the meantime, I can share some mini refresher courses on the areas I think need the most attention — starting with the rules of the left lane.

Left Lane Rules

When it comes to the left lane, there are two things people seem to forget: how to use the left lane and how to pass someone in the left lane.
  1. Usage of the Left Lane
    Driver’s ed taught us that the left land is for faster-moving traffic and passing.  You probably don’t belong in the left lane if one or all of the following three things occurs: someone is dangerously tailgating you, one or more cars is weaving in and out of traffic in the other lanes just to land themselves directly in front of you or you see the person behind you making hand gestures or yelling at you. 

    Regardless of how fast these other drivers may be going, the proper thing to do is yield to faster moving traffic in the left lane. Failure to do so results in impeding the flow of traffic, which is not only dangerous, it’s also illegal in most jurisdictions.
  2. Left-Lane Passing
    Have you ever been stuck on a four-lane highway or road because two vehicles are driving at the exact same speed? This is one of my biggest pet peeves and is usually a result of the “cruise control pass”.  Here’s how this happens… John Doe      decides that he wants to pass Joe Black so he pulls into the left lane to do so. However, John Doe is attempting to pass Joe Black with his cruise control set at 65 mph. Since Joe Black is only going 62 mph, it takes forever for this pass to be complete which is only two mph faster than the car he is attempting to pass. Remember, when passing someone in the left lane, you must speed up sufficiently enough to get past the other guy quickly.
So there you have it, Newnan cars. The rules of the left lane. Know them, learn them, live them. Stay tuned for more lessons in driving.

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