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AA Report Suggests Middle Lane Hogging Is Getting Worse

Around half of drivers believe middle lane hogging and undertaking are becoming more common on UK roads, according to new research conducted by AA.

What is “middle lane hogging”?

When driving in a three lane motorway, rule 264 of the Highway Code states:

You should always drive in the left-hand lane when the road ahead is clear. If you are overtaking a number of slower-moving vehicles, you should return to the left-hand lane as soon as you are safely past.

Middle lane hogging is when drivers stay in the middle lane longer than needed, even when there are no vehicles to overtake in the inside lane. In 2016, the police issued 16.8 thousand Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) for careless driving, however, this dropped to 15.4 thousand in 2017, the latest statistics available. Despite official statistics depicting that the number of FPNs for careless driving fell by 8.4%, an AA study of almost 21,000 drivers found that 49 percent believe that lane hogging was getting worse, and 50 percent said overtaking on the inside was becoming a very common theme on the motorways.
Edmund King, AA Charitable Trust director, said:

“Middle lane hogs are always in the top three pet hates of drivers, so it doesn’t help harmony on the roads if drivers perceive the problem is getting worse. “At best, middle lane hogs and under-takers are annoying, but the reality is these habits are dangerous. Blocking lanes often leads to other drivers tailgating which itself leads to collisions. “The drop in Fixed Penalty Notices for careless driving probably points more to a reduction in traffic police than it does to a meaningful change in behaviour. “Hopefully allowing learner drivers on motorways will lead to a new generation of drivers who better understand lane discipline.”

The AA-Populus research also discovered that:
• Around half of drivers think tailgating is getting worse (55%)
• 50% think mobile phone use is getting worse
• 53% think speeding is getting worse, and
• 47% think road rage is getting worse
Read More: AA Newsroom