If you’ve ever driven on I-95 in Miami, chances are you’ve seen someone engaging in “lane-diving.” A large (and increasing) stretch of I-95 in Miami is divided by plastic orange poles separating the express and general purpose lanes. Lane-diving occurs when a driver runs over these poles either entering or exiting the express lanes outside of the designated access points.

South Florida drivers have seemingly become quite comfortable with lane-diving, as the dangerous practice has increased significantly in recent years. In fact, it has become so prevalent that the Florida Highway Patrol publicized a new effort to identify and cite lane-divers. To make matters worse, the portions of I-95 that are lined by these dividers are already cramped and mobbed with traffic on a near-constant basis. As if I-95 between Fort Lauderdale and Miami wasn’t dangerous enough, lane-diving drivers now add another hazard in navigating the highway, which has resulted in countless car accidents.

What makes lane-diving especially dangerous is the fact that the difference in speed between vehicles travelling in the express lanes compared to those in the general purpose lanes often varies, drastically. Express lane drivers, when travelling at or above common highway speeds (55-65 m.p.h.), will frequently be racing by the traffic crawling in the general purpose lanes, sometimes within a proximity of only a few feet, making any potential car accident potentially devastating. Furthermore, traffic regularly comes to an abrupt stop without much notice or warning. In situations like these, drivers darting out of the express lanes may be travelling at speeds that doesn’t allow them to stop so abruptly. Conversely, impatient drivers trying to enter the express lanes will normally due so from a slow or stopped pace, leaving oncoming drivers in the express lanes in a precarious position. Either way, these actions make a serious rear-end or other type of collision much more likely.

In fact, it was just recently reported that an alleged lane-diver on I-95 Southbound attempted to leave the express lanes and collided with the rear-end a vehicle in the left-hand general purpose lane, causing a multi-vehicle accident that closed all lanes for several hours and left a number of victims hospitalized. No matter how you look at it, lane-diving is extremely unsafe. Now, with the express lanes expanding up through Broward County to the Fort Lauderdale area of I-95, car accidents caused by lane-diving are likely to increase. This is why South Florida drivers must take extra precaution when driving on the stretches of I-95 between Miami and Fort Lauderdale that contain these pesky plastic poles.

For further discussion on this topic or any other, feel free to contact the Schulman Law Group at (954) 349-3300 or at info@www.schulaw.com