Florida bill targets lane 'zippers'

| Thursday, April 27, 2006

Those motorists who speed up beside you, then cut you off when their lane ends are the target of a measure moving through the Florida Legislature.

The Senate Transportation Committee voted 5-1 to advance a bill that could earn offending drivers, commonly referred to as “zippers,” a ticket.

Florida law already makes it unlawful to cross a solid line to pass another vehicle, The Miami Herald reported. But Sen. Steve Geller, D-Hallandale Beach, has proposed expanding the law to make it a moving violation to jump in line in front of other drivers.

The bill – S774 – would apply to drivers who are “exiting or entering a roadway, merging, or traveling through a designated construction zone.”

This is Geller’s second attempt at getting stricter rules through the Legislature.

In 2004, he introduced a similar bill in response to his experience driving to a Marlins playoff game. As he waited to exit the Florida Turnpike, 90 minutes before game time and with the stadium in sight, no one was moving – except the people who were cutting around Geller and other people in line.

“All these jerks were just zooming by on the left,” he said at the time.

The bill never made it out of committee.

This year’s effort has been sent to the Senate Criminal Justice Committee. If approved there, it would move to the full Senate for consideration.

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