Slow drivers should stay to the right
: Sen. Ron Menor was pulled over on the H-1 freeway for driving too slow. What is the law regarding driving too slow? The speed limit is a maximum not to exceed, but there is no sign saying how slow one can drive. I can see if one is in the fast lane and holding up traffic, but what about driving slow in the other lanes? Is there a law for, say older drivers, not to drive under a certain speed, or is this not a right?
Answer: There are laws against driving too slow and/or impeding traffic for any driver, young or old.
Slow drivers -- defined as anyone driving 5 miles per hour or more below the posted speed limit -- should stay in the far right lane on multilane roadways.
We addressed this subject a few years ago (Kokua Line, Oct. 17, 2004), but the Menor case presents a good opportunity to point out again that driving too slow can be a violation, under state and city laws.
Menor, according to police reports, was stopped after an officer saw him driving about 30 mph on the H-1 freeway, his van "weaving in a snakelike motion" and traffic building up behind it.
He was cited for impeding traffic and for not having a current safety sticker, as well as arrested for, and subsequently charged with, driving under the influence.
The wording in Section 291C-102 of the Hawaii Revised Statutes -- "noncompliance with speed limit prohibited" -- was changed in 2006, said Honolulu police spokesman Maj. Frank Fujii, but the basic intent remains the same as in 2004: A driver is in violation if he/she drives faster than the maximum speed limit or slower than the minimum speed limit, per the limits established by the counties or indicated by official state signs.
Meanwhile, Section 15-7.4 of the Revised Ordinances of Honolulu -- "minimum speed regulations" -- specifies:
» Drivers of slow-moving vehicles should drive as close as possible to the right-hand edge of any roadway -- laned or unlaned.
» Drivers should not drive at such a low speed "as to impede or block the normal and reasonable movement of traffic," except if directed to do so by a police officer or other authorized person or when a reduced speed is necessary for safety or compliance with the law.
» When there are two or more lanes of traffic moving in the same direction, only drivers in the extreme right lane should travel 5 mph or more below the maximum stated speed, i.e., below 30 mph in a 35-mph speed zone or below 40 mph in a 45-mph speed zone, except when otherwise directed to do so by an officer or other authorized person or when a reduced speed is necessary for safety or compliance with the law.
» During morning or afternoon peak traffic hours, no one should drive, move or tow any vehicle which cannot maintain a speed at least 5 mph under the maximum speed limit posted for a street or highway, except on public holidays.
Anyone know ...
Joseph L. McCormick Jr.?
About a year ago, Mary Phillips' father passed away. Among his belongings was a journal kept by McCormick from December 1942 to July 1943. The two men had served in the Navy together.
"The only information we have on this individual is that he is buried at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu, and he died on May 19, 1986," Phillips said. "I would love to return the journal to Mr. McCormick's family, but have no idea how to find them."
If any reader knows the McCormick family or is related to Joseph McCormick Jr., please call 529-4773 and leave a message or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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