Missouri and Hawaii bills call for left lane truck rules
January 5, 2022
Legislation introduced in two statehouses would keep trucks to the right on interstate highways.
Four states acted over the past year to bolster left lane rules for all travelers.
New for 2022, a Missouri bill would further single out trucks from left lane use.
State law already prohibits trucks with a registered gross weight in excess of 24,000 pounds traveling in the Kansas City or St. Louis area from driving in the far left lane of roadways with at least three lanes of traffic in each direction.
House Transportation Chairman Jeff Porter, R-Montgomery City, has introduced a bill to remove language in statute that limits application to highways in the state’s two metropolitan areas. Instead, HB2084 would make the rule applicable anywhere in the state on roadways with at least three lanes of traffic in each direction.
Porter’s bill awaits assignment to committee.
Mike Matousek, director of state legislative affairs for the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, says that truck drivers are firsthand observers of the negative consequences of misguided traffic laws, and while perhaps not intended, efforts to restrict trucks from certain lanes pose serious challenges for truckers and jeopardize the safety of the traveling public.
“While we’re still trying to figure out exactly what this bill would do, we’re opposed to lane restrictions of any kind,” Matousek said. “Missouri should repeal its existing lane restrictions, not potentially expand them.”
A Hawaii bill has been brought back for consideration that would limit truck lane use.
Carried over from the 2021 regular session, HB793 would limit large trucks to the right-hand lane on any interstate highway in the island state. Certain exceptions would apply.
The rule would apply to trucks with a gross vehicle weight in excess of 10,000 pounds. LL