Which Lane Do You Use To Pass?


There are two kind of drivers – those that pass on the left and those that shouldn’t be driving.

On interstates in the United States, it’s not only common practice, but also law in most states, that the left lane is used for faster-moving traffic. Those driving in the left-hand lane should yield to faster moving vehicles.

Yet, why is it that anyone that’s ever driven anywhere can attest to the fact that plenty of people either do not realize this is the law or don’t care? On the rare chance that you are someone that passes on the right, here are two reason not to: safety and the law.

Safety First
The reason so many states have laws governing which lane vehicles should pass is that passing on the left is considered to be safer. If everyone can agree to use the same lane to pass, then it becomes more predictable. The chances that a driver can anticipate on which side they will be passed, reduces the potential for said driver to try and change lanes while they are being passed.

The Law
For many years, the law in Indiana required slower-moving vehicles on any multi-lane highway to use the right lane. However, beginning July 2015, a law signed into effect gives faster drivers the right-of-way of the left lane.

This was an interesting addition to the current law as it technically means that if a driver is going the speed limit in the left-hand lane, but they don’t move over when a vehicle that is driving above the speed limit approaches, they are the ones at fault.

According to the WTHR website, “The law does not apply in poor weather, heavy traffic, when exiting to the left, paying a toll, or pulling over for an emergency vehicle. Nor does it give drivers carte blanche to speed – you can still get pulled over for breaking the speed limit.”


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