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DRIVETIME MAHATMA: Go right, slowpokes, when safe

by Frank Fellone | July 4, 2020 at 8:23 a.m.

Dear Mahatma: I would add that in the case of passing a line of trucks that it is impossible to safely merge when the trucks are essentially tailgating each other.

-- Tim

Dear Tim: You reference the past two columns, both of which asked a cosmic question.

If a driver is passing a line of big rigs on the interstate, and some impatient dude comes up wanting to haul booty, is our driver obligated to move over into the truck line?

Thank you, Tim, for allowing us to beat this critter again.

The answer is yes, our driver should move over when safe. That concords with state law on the matter.

Our authority on the topic is Arkansas Code Annotated 27-51-302, which among other things says, "Official signs may be erected directing slower-moving traffic to use a designated lane or allocating specified lanes to traffic moving in the same direction, and drivers of vehicles shall obey the directions of every such sign."

We all know those signs. On top is a yellow sign that says "State Law." Below is the white sign that says "Get over, Grandma!"

That's a joke. Sort of.

So hot is this topic that The Mahatma can't even play golf without being engaged in debate. More about this later.

Dear Mahatma: Thanks for your comments on the overtaking of vehicles. I'll write my legislative member to see if we can get the law written with more clarification. It is frustrating and I've been behind many a left lane driver who refuses to move over in the examples you provided. -- A Different Tim

Dear Tim: It must be the week for guys named Tim. May your tribe increase.

Many thanks for the idea of legislative review of the pertinent laws on the matter of moving over, proving it's better to turn on the headlights than curse the darkness. As faithful readers know, fracturing proverbs is a specialty here at the Traffic Desk.

Dear Mahatma: There are a plethora of impatient drivers and more than I have ever seen in my almost 72 years of living. Ego and pride may be other factors that exacerbate the impatience. Hmm ... seems like I've read: "Pride goes before destruction, And a haughty spirit before a fall." Proverbs (16:18).

-- The Penitent Impatient One

Dear Penitent: Bless you for sending over a real proverb, from which much is learned.

Now, about that golf course incident.

The Mahatma was golfing alone, a precaution in the Age of Corona, when he bumped into two brothers, gentlemen who recognized us as the newspaper dude who frequently confuses readers about the rules of the road.

A spirited conversation ensued over the matter of moving for faster traffic. One brother claimed victory over the other.

Sibling rivalries never die; neither do they fade away.

We parted friends with these four words:

Move over when safe.

The Mahatma then pounded a hideous drive right into the rough.


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