The freeing of motorway tolls has made increase traffic exponentially to the AP-7. The Girona counties have a long section of this expressway -from Fogars de la Selva to La Jonquera- and it is not uncommon to see a driver committing an offence.

    One of these is the ride in the middle lane. It is a driving it can be dangerous and also annoying by the rest of the users when they want to advance the vehicles that are in the lane on the right.

    This infraction has been increasing as a result of the lifting of tolls and the Mossos d’Esquadra They have imposed 205 sanctions on drivers between January and October for this breach. This means that on average they issue a fine every two days, according to data provided by the Catalan Traffic Service (SCT). If you end up sanctioned, you have to pay 200 euros. The fine does not imply the deletion of points from the driving license and if it is paid at the time, the amount is reduced.

    The head of the Mossos of the Girona Regional Traffic Area, the Inspector Joan Costa remember that this infringement had already been detected and worked on before the erection of toll barriers. But he acknowledges that the increase in mobility on this route has led new drivers and therefore, more breaches of this type.

    This offense is regulated in Article 31 of the General Road Safety Regulations and as the policeman recalls, he makes it very clear that You always have to drive in the right lane.. There are some exceptions, the inspector points out, such as if you have to leave the road on the left. But in the case of Girona there is no exit from the AP-7 where this occurs. You can also drive in the middle lane if you have to overtake.

    The Girona Traffic Mossos explains their boss, they end up sanctioning the most extreme cases. In addition, Joan Costa wants to make it clear that what the Mossos do first is to “alert” and says that they are not “interested in reporting” but rather that they seek to “guarantee road safety and mobility».

    notify drivers

    For this reason, what they do when they detect that a vehicle is not moving from the middle lane is stand “next” with the police vehicle “and We signal that you have to go to the right». Most of the users pay attention to them, but there are some who do not.

    In case of refusing to move from the middle lanethe Mossos stop the vehicle and report the driver. This extreme, according to the head of the Girona Traffic Mossos, often causes «a very complicated circulation and the vehicle that goes in the middle causes many repercussions due to mobility and even forces other vehicles that have to move forward to make dangerous movements ».

    In fact, the offense for driving in the middle lane has caused some traffic accidents, but luckily, remember Joan Costa have been low intensity. Even so, remember the danger of making this violation because these drivers «force others to make sudden maneuvers and the risk of accident increases.

    A practical example of this behavior that is often repeated on the highway is seeing a driver speeding in the middle lane -at 80 kilometers per hour- and instead, a truck is going 90 in the lane on the right and then, this one can’t move forward.

    On the other hand, the data for the year 2022 show how this type of infringement has risen. This was foreseeable, points out the inspector, since it is the first year that the motorway has been fully released. These 205 sanctions are the highest number since 2019. Traffic data shows the same as last year, but they already suffered an increase compared to previous years. In 2021, 179 were imposed while during the pandemic (2020), 78; and the pre-pandemic 2019, 129.

    The profile of ‘those in the middle’

    The users who end up using the middle lane can be of various types, but inspector Joan Costa points out that there would be at least four driver profiles. From the outset, there is one that does not involve mobility problems, which is the one that «drive fastat 140 kilometers per hour -exceeding the allowed limit- and normally goes by the second or third rail». This does not bother other users, but instead, there is a second type of driver that “for comfort» goes for him medium when you would have to go in the right lane. But, as Costa points out, “I see that there are cars and trucks that go by the one on the right at speeds of 80 to 90 kilometers per hour and he, on the other hand, goes to 120 and finds these ‘inputs’». East instead of moving forward and return to the right lane, goes through the middle and, therefore, commits an infraction.

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    The Traffic Mossos also find a driver profile that He doesn’t know why he’s in the middle or third lane. And finally, there is a road user who circulates «as a rule in the middle because that’s how it goes rested and they set the cruising speed »to continue on their way, when this is prohibitedthe inspector points out.

    pass on the right

    All these behaviors end with an infraction that entails a fine of 200 euros. But there is also another typical infraction on the motorway -and sometimes as a consequence of the previous one-, as Joan Costa remembers and which many people commit: overtaking on the right. It is totally prohibited and also entails a fine of 200 euros and no reduction of driving license points.