What is Improper Lane Usage?

Improper lane usage (625 ILCS 5/11-709) means that a driver has failed to safely use lanes correctly. There are two major ways this law can be violated. A driver can improperly use the lanes or fail to obey a sign related to lanes. Proper lane use requires that a driver drive as nearly as practicable entirely within a single lane. The driver must also change lanes only when such movement can be made with safety.

Sign requiring trucks only use right lanes
Traffic control device related to related to lane usage by trucks

Improper lane usage often occurs when a truck driver uses a lane they are not permitted to. Many highways prohibit trucks from driving in the leftmost lanes. When a truck driver violates this rule, they can be charged with a violation of this law.

How Can Improper Lane Usage Affect My CDL?

Both types of improper lane usage are a problem for CDL drivers. These violations are serious moving violations capable of harming a CDL driver’s privileges. If a driver receives two serious moving violations within a three year period in a commercial motor vehicle, the CDL will be disqualified for at least 60 days. Some other serious moving violations include:

  • Speeding 15 MPH or more over the limit
  • Driving recklessly or reckless driving
  • Following too closely
  • Disobey traffic control device other than parking signs involving a fatal accident
  • Driving a CMV without obtaining a CDL
  • Driving a CMV without a CDL in the driver’s possession
  • Operating a CMV without proper class of CDL and/or endorsements for cargo/passengers carried
  • Use of Electronic Communications Device (Cell Phone) while operating a motor vehicle

If you have had one of these tickets in the past three years, you are at risk of disqualifying your CDL. It would be best to contact an attorney to see what can be done to protect your license.

How can I protect my CDL?

It can be tempting to try to get court supervision to protect your record. The officer may even suggest this. Court supervision however does not help CDL holders. The improper lane usage violation will still appear on your record. There are only two ways to prevent a ticket from appearing on a record. To not be found guilty or to have it amended to a non-moving violation. A trial may be the best option for you but in many improper lane usage situations, it may not be possible to win. For instance, if you are in the wrong lane, we it will be hard to prove otherwise. To avoid this outcome, we work to amend the ticket. We have a good success rate at amending these tickets to non-moving violations. This keeps the ticket from affect your insurance rates. It keeps it from affecting your CDL. It will keep it from appearing on your driving record. Call us today so we can discuss what the options are for your case.