The “Slow Poke” Law

Traffic Ticket for Driving The Speed Limit? Can you really get a ticket for driving the speed limit?

In Georgia, the answer is YES you can!

Although Georgia’s “slow poke” law has been in effect since July 1, 2014, many people are still unaware of the law and its impact. States across the country have begun cracking down on drivers that impede the flow of traffic by lingering in the left lane. As part of this effort to combat traffic congestion and road rage incidents, the Georgia legislature amended O.C.G.A. § 40-6-184 to criminalize the act of driving in the left lane regardless if the driver is driving the speed limit. Specifically, it is illegal to “impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic.” Thus, a driver who is driving the speed limit in the left lane with drivers behind them can be ticketed for failure to move over one lane to the right. In areas with more than 2 lanes of traffic, the law only applies to the “most left-hand lane other than a high occupancy vehicle lane” so drivers are not required to move all the way over to the far right.

Most jurisdictions began implementing the law through the issuance of warnings, but officers are not required to give you a warning because ignorance of the law is not a legal defense. Remember to only use the far left-hand lane when passing slower vehicles and always yield to faster traffic by merging back over to the right. If ticketed with a violation of the “slow poke” law, it’s important to remember that while officers have a wide range of discretion in determining whether a driver is impeding traffic, there are also many other factors such as weather conditions, time of day, and the general flow of traffic in the area that can affect your case.

If you are ticketed for impeding the flow of traffic you may receive a fine up to $1,000, 3 points on your license, and a substantial increase in your insurance premiums. If you have been charged with a violation of Georgia’s “slow poke” law, call our office and we can help you deal with the court. Our office has extensive experience in traffic violations and DUI defense. Fighting traffic tickets with an attorney’s help is essential because any conviction on your record will greatly reduce the possibility of having future citations lowered or dismissed.  If you have received a traffic ticket give us a call for a free consultation at 404-581-0999.