Know the Road: Can I use an exit lane to pass traffic?

Is it legal to use an exit lane to pass traffic on a freeway?

Video Transcript

- A question for the CHP today comes in from Kevin. And he wants to know, if you're driving on the freeway and there's an exit only lane, can you use that lane to pass traffic before that lane ends or could you get a ticket for doing so?

BRIAN PENNINGS: The answer is maybe. A vehicle can utilize that exit only lane the pass traffic as long as they first pass traffic safely and merge into traffic legally, and that is where there is a broken white line and not a solid white line, meaning that the lane change has to take place prior to the solid white line and not over the gore point. However, if that exit lane is posted with a black and white regulatory sign that says exit only or right lane must exit, a vehicle traveling in that lane must abide by that direction and exit. If they do not exit and they merge back into traffic after that sign is posted, it is a violation of the law and can be a fine of approximately $250.