New NC bill would slap $200 fine on slowpoke drivers

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- If you’re someone who likes to drive slow, a new bill could make you stay out of the fast lane.

The bill, introduced to the North Carolina Senate, would fine drivers $200 for going below the maximum speed limit in the lane furthest to the left on a multi-lane highway.

“The speed limit is 60, somebody’s going 55 in the fast lane, I’m trying to get by them going 60, they’re creating a dangerous situation,” said Greg Gunter, of Winston-Salem.

Some lawmakers obviously agreed, as the bill passed its first reading in the Senate and made its way to the Senate Committee on Rules and Operations.

The bill reads that, if a driver is in a “lane other than the inside lane next to the centerline or median of a multi-lane highway, except when overtaking and passing another vehicle proceeding in the same direction or when making a left turn,” and is going less than the maximum posted speed limit, they could be “guilty of an infraction punishable by a fine of $200.”

“It’s real frustrating to be going in the passing lane, and have somebody be doing 30, and I need to be doing 55 or 60,” said Ronnie Samuels, who told FOX8 he was a commercial driver in New York City for 20 years.

Samuels also touched upon the fact that slow drivers can sometimes be as dangerous as speeders.

The bill would also look to book people who are “impeding the steady flow of traffic,” or who know – or should know – that a vehicle is approaching from behind at a faster rate of speed and fail to move over.

“If we believe in fining people for speeding, then going too slow makes just as much sense in my book,” Gunter said.

If passed, the bill would go into effect on Dec. 1, 2015.