MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WIAT) — In the past week, two new driving laws have taken effect here in Alabama.
The new laws range from buckling up in the back seat to how long you can travel in the left lane on the highway.
New seatbelt law
Mike Lutzenkirchen spends a lot of time in Alabama sharing road safety tips to students while also keeping his son’s memory alive by sharing his story.
Lutzenkirchen said, “I can’t wait to hug my son again, and I hope he says dad I’m proud, and I don’t think he would be if we weren’t doing something to take the wonderful platform he created and want people to learn from his mistakes.”
His son was Philip Lutzenkirchen, the former Auburn football star who was killed in a car crash in 2014. Lutzenkirchen was riding in the backseat.
Mike Lutzenkirchen said, “I truly believe in my heart had Philip been wearing a seat belt, he would still be alive.”
In Montgomery, another family lost their son in a car crash.
While traveling to a playoff game in Birmingham in 2016, Rodrick Scott was one of three riding without a seatbelt in the backseat. He was ejected from the vehicle and died the next day.
This past summer Gov. Kay Ivey signed the Roderic Deshaun Scott Seat Belt Safety Act into law.
Ranita Scott, Rodrick’s mother, said, “He would be horned to have this bill named after him, because he cared so much for people.”
The Scott family says their son’s legacy lives on.
Rodrick Scott, Rodrick’s father said, “He is still here with us, his name will now be on the seat belt law”
The Alabama Department of Transportation helped get the act pushed through the legislature.
Allison Green of ALDOT said, “We want to encourage people to wear your seat belt, every seat, every time”
Anti road rage law
In addition to the rear seat belt law, the Anti Road Rage Law creates a violation for driving in the left lane for more than one-and-a-half miles without passing another car.
Alabama State Trooper Jess Thornton says these new laws will be strictly enforced.
Thronton said, “Obviously the grace period is over and if we stop people that are violating the law, we will enforce it.”
ALEA says now is the time to start practicing these new laws before the busy travel season starts.