Unsafe Lane Change (also known as) Traffic on Marked Lanes 39:4-88:
This Statute Basically requires that the driver follow 3 main elements:
- A driver must as nearly as practicable, drive within his/her single lane in other words maintain his/her lane and
- The driver may not change lanes until he can do so safely (39:4-88b)
- The driver most normally drive in the lane that is nearest to the right-hand curb. (39:4-88a)
- For truck drivers only: No truck over 10,000lbs registered gross weight shall be driven in the farthest left hand lane except for up to one mile to prepare for a left hand turn or to enter or leave a highway. (39:4-88e)
This ticket is most often given when a person stays in their lane but fails to maintain the car within that lane (example rides on the lines but doesn't cross) this is commonly called swerving. The statute also prescribes that the driver must change lanes safely, thus a sudden and unsafe lane change on a crowded roadway is a violation where as the same conduct on a deserted roadway could be considered inconsequential. Therefore the facts of your case and time of day it happened are very important in some cases. However continued lane changes even on a deserted road have been found to be a violation of this statute.
The actual law is below:
39:4-88. Traffic on marked lanes
When a roadway has been divided into clearly marked lanes for traffic, drivers of vehicles shall obey the following regulations:
a. A vehicle shall normally be driven in the lane nearest the right-hand edge or curb of the roadway when that lane is available for travel, except when overtaking another vehicle or in preparation for a left turn.
b. A vehicle shall be driven as nearly as practicable entirely within a single lane and shall not be moved from that lane until the driver has first ascertained that the movement can be made with safety.
c. Upon a highway which is divided into 3 lanes, a vehicle shall not be driven in the center lane except when overtaking or passing another vehicle or in preparation for a left turn or unless the center lane is at the time allocated for traffic moving in the direction the vehicle is proceeding and is signposted to give notice of that allocation.
d. The State Highway Commissioner may by regulation or local authorities may by resolution or ordinance with respect to highways under their jurisdiction designate right-hand lanes for slow moving traffic and inside lanes for traffic moving at the speed designated for the district as provided under this chapter, and when the lanes are signposted or marked to give notice of the designation a vehicle may be driven in any lane allocated to traffic moving in the direction in which it is proceeding, but when traveling within the inside lanes the vehicle shall be driven at approximately the speed authorized in such lanes and speed shall not be decreased unnecessarily so as to block, hinder or retard traffic.
e. When such roadway had been divided in such a manner that there are three or more lanes for traffic in any one direction, no truck of 10,000 pounds registered gross weight or over shall be driven in the farthest left-hand lane, except:
- when and to the extent necessary to prepare for a left turn; a truck may be driven in the farthest left lane for up to one mile to prepare for a left hand turn as authorized under this paragraph;
- when necessary to enter or leave such roadway by entrance or exit to or from the left lane; a truck may be driven in the farthest left lane for up to one mile to prepare to enter or leave the roadway as authorized under this paragraph;
- when reasonably necessary in response to emergency conditions; for the purposes of this paragraph, "emergency conditions" shall include, but not be limited to: poor visibility, snow, accidents, or the presence of emergency vehicles.
If you get convicted of an unsafe lane change or traffic on marked lanes you will be accessed 2 points on your license. Don't let points ruin your clean record, increase your car insurance rates and cost you money. We have a 98%* Success rate of eliminating the points this ticket carries. Learn how. Setup your free in office consultation at 1-800-974-4487 and start saving money today. In NJ the law requires that a driver must know the proper lane for normal operation and know how to change lanes safely while following the law. For example a driver must always Stay to the right of the center lines. Passing only when there is no oncoming traffic. Watch for lane markings. If the centerlines are both solid, passing is strictly prohibited. If the centerline is dashed on the drivers left side, passing is allowed. All passings must be completed before the centerlines are solid again. Most passing should be made on the left. unless a driver is making a left turn, then you can pass on the right if the roadway has more than one lane going in your direction. Please note however New Jersey law prohibits any passing on the right shoulder of the roadway so you cannot use a shoulder to pass any vehicle.
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Under NJSA: 39:5-31: A judge may suspend the driving privileges of any person he/she deems to be guilty of a “willful violation” of the law. In simplified layman terms this means that, if the driver knew or should have known, what he/she was doing was illegal or improper, (example running a red light or speeding double the limit or 30mph or more over the limit etc.) the judge may issue a license revocation or suspension to that person even if the particular statute has no provision for a license suspension.
A suspension under 39:5-31 is generally only given by a judge when a ticket is either:
- Marked with a mandatory court appearance or
- When an accident occurs as a result of the ticketed persons actions or
- If the person has a bad past driving record. (points may go away over time, but the violation stays on your record for life)
Accordingly, If your ticket is marked mandatory court appearance, do not try to handle this ticket yourself, put the experience of Attorney Aalsberg to work for you to help reduce or eliminate any possible license suspension. Attorney Aalsberg has a 98%* Success rate to win, reduce or eliminate the penalties for all NJ traffic ticket charges.