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Massachusetts Marked Lanes Violations

Massachusetts Registry News

Marked lanes violations often accompany charges such as operating under the influence, negligent operation, reckless driving and speeding.  In most cases, two violations on a single ticket will count as two separate surchargeable events for the purpose of 7 surchargable event license suspensions and habitual traffic offender revocations.  The Massachusetts marked lanes law, G.L. .c. 89 § 4A states as follows: “When any way has been divided into lanes, the driver of a vehicle shall so drive that the vehicle shall be entirely within a single lane, and he shall not move from the lane in which he is driving until he has first ascertained if such movement can be made with safety.”  A marked lanes violation carries a fine of $100.00.

Some police officers believe that if a vehicle is travelling at high speeds, the driver should automatically be cited for a marked lanes violation, even if the officer did not observe the violation, because it would be impossible for a driver to stay within his or her lane at a high speed.

In some states, a marked lanes violation is considered part of what constitutes “Aggressive Driving.” However, Massachusetts does not currently have an aggressive driving law. The National Highway Traffic Safety Adminstration (NHTSA) has stated that driving outside marked lanes is an indicator of someone who may be driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) and it is often used as “reasonable suspicion” to stop a motorist who is suspected of operating under the influence.

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