HONOLULU (KHON2) — A measure that could affect truck drivers and other large commercial vehicles is close to becoming law.

State Senators and Representatives voted to pass a bill prohibiting oversized commercial vehicles from using the far-left lane if there are three or more lanes on the roadway. 

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State Sen. Chris Lee said this measure comes after several calls from the community. 

Lee said, “We’ve got a lot of interest from the public who I think are frustrated, sometimes, if you have slowdowns and the left lane when you’re driving down the H-1 or other major highways; so, the bill really helps try to clarify who should be where on the roads.”

The proposed law said this would apply to commercial cars weighing 10,000 pounds or more. 

Lee said, “If you can remove those who are a little bit slower sometimes into one of the right lanes that just lets everything go a lot more quickly.”

There are some exceptions carved out in the proposed law, one that would allow commercial vehicle drivers on the left lane if they are able to keep up with the current speed of traffic. There’s also an exception for drivers who are trying to pass another car. 

The Hawaii Transportation Association Managing Director Gareth Sakakida said they originally opposed the bill. He said previous versions were too restrictive by not including language to allow commercial vehicles from using the left lane for turning or exiting. 

That language has now been added. 

Sakakida said, “Making sure that our guys who can keep up with the traffic are still allowed to utilize the left lane. And again, without impeding the motoring public.”

He suspects if the bill becomes law, truckers and other commercial deliveries will have to factor in added time, especially if the type of cargo prevents them from using the left lane. 

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Sakakida said, “We have to be there in the mornings, whether it’s construction, bakeries, restaurants, you name it.” 

The Governor has until June 26 to inform the Hawaii Legislature if he intends to veto the bill.