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Moving truckers from one side of the freeway to the other? A plan to help exiting cars

By in Press Enterprise on August 29, 2017

By Michael Watanabe

Q. Reader Henri V. De Roule wrote to express his frustration with trucks. De Roule, who lives in the San Gorgonio Pass city of Banning, said there have been many times he has had trouble exiting the freeway due to trucks traveling close to each other in the right lane and not leaving enough room for a car to get in and safely exit the freeway.

He recommends that truck lanes be moved to the innermost lanes of the freeway — on the left side, where the fast lane is — for through driving.

“This would allow vehicles entering and exiting the freeway safer passage,” De Roule wrote.

A. Many drivers at some time have been stuck on the freeway behind a slow-moving truck or have had a hard time getting around one. Riverside CHP Officer Dan Olivas noted that by law, trucks are required to go no faster than 55 mph. Practically speaking, they can’t drive in the fast lane on the left side of the highway because this would hold up traffic.

On freeways of three or four lanes, trucks must be in the right lane, but they can use the lane to the left of the slow lane for passing only. On some wider freeways, trucks may be allowed to drive in the second-to-the-right lane.

As for the idea that the law could be changed to accommodate De Roule’s suggestion, Olivas said that would be an issue for the state Legislature.

All of that said, to be safe, drivers needing to exit the freeway should prepare ahead of time. They should move over to the right with plenty of time to spare so they don’t get stuck behind a truck when they reach their exit and need to get off, Olivas said. In most cases, if the driver signals early enough, truck drivers […]    

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