There are exceptions to Alabama’s new ‘left lane driving law’

Clearing up confusion around new law

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - If you’re not driving with a purpose in the left lane on highways, you can now get pulled over.

The Alabama Anti-Road Rage Act went into effect September 1, but there’s still some confusion about the rules of this new law.

The rule is: you’re only allowed to drive in the left lane to pass another car. Do not drive in the left lane for more than a 1.5 miles.


  1. Congestion: If traffic is preventing you from driving in the right lane, you can remain in the left lane.
  2. Bad weather and road hazards: The new law states, you are allowed to drive in the left lane if these conditions are present.
  3. Exit and Toll: When your exit is on the left, or you’re paying a toll, you are allowed to drive in the left lane.
  4. Authorized Vehicles: Law enforcement and first responders, while on duty, are allowed to drive in the left lane.
  5. Construction: If construction forces traffic to the left, it is okay to stay in the left lane.

Representative Phillip Pettus, a retired state trooper and sponsor of HB 212, has said the new law is designed to cut down on road rage incidents.

For those needing time to adjust to the new highway rule, law enforcement is only allowed to issue warnings for the first 60 days after the law goes into effect.

On November 1, 2019, law enforcement will be allowed to issue tickets. The penalty will be similar to a speeding ticket.

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