Md. Woman Cited for Driving Too Slowly in Left Lane

Retired trooper: "This charge was not totally incorrect, but it may not have been the best charge for the trooper to use"

A Maryland woman was shocked after she received a traffic ticket on Interstate 95 — because it wasn't for speeding.

In fact, she was driving two mph under the speed limit.

The driver, who didn't want her name used, told News4 she was driving in the left lane of I-95 in Laurel last Friday when she was pulled over and cited for failing to move right.

According to the citation, she had been driving 63 mph in the left hand lane in a 65 mph zone. The citation read, "Failure of driver, driving below speed limit, 63 in a 65, to keep right."

"[I was] really shocked," she said. "I thought, 'Oh my God, you've got to be kidding me'."

A retired state trooper said Tuesday that the ticket may not hold up in court.

"You can drive in the left lane in Maryland as long as you are doing the speed limit, or not impeding by going 10 mph under the speed limit," Sgt. Rob Moroney told News4's Darcy Spencer.

Moroney said the woman was cited under a code section that deals with driving 10 mph or more under the speed limit. A different part of the law deals with drivers who impede traffic.

"This charge was not totally incorrect, but it may not have been the best charge for the trooper to use," Moroney said.

The woman who got the ticket said she'd never been cited before — but on Friday, she said, she had to slow down due to heavy winds.

"Sometimes when it's dangerous, you have to do what you can to stay safe," she said.

Storm Team 4 Meteorologist Doug Kammerer said winds were gusting at around 40 mph that day.

A spokesperson for AAA Mid-Atlantic said he disapproved of the citation.

"The reason [the ticket] is silly is because it's sending the wrong message," said AAA's John Townsend. "And that is, 'We will tolerate you driving at more than the speed limit, but it you drive below the speed limit, then you're penalized for that'."

The driver has filed a complaint with Maryland State Police and plans to fight the ticket.

While police said they can't comment on this specific ticket, they said that driving too slowly can impede traffic, and that anyone who wants to fight a citation can do so in court.

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