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Traffic law to punish tailgating to go into effect Tuesday

45 Comments

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Japan is running before it can walk; if drivers were taught to get in the proper bloody lane there wouldn't be half as many tailgating issues. I'm tired of seeing two trucks, Prius or Daihatsu Move plodding up an incline next to each other.

Also, when the signals turn green, you are allowed to proceed within 10 seconds of it doing so.

13 ( +21 / -8 )

Yes. They should teach drivers to stay in the left lane. Cruising in the right lane (or middle lane on the expressways) is very annoying and dangerous too.

11 ( +18 / -7 )

@towingtheline

It is already illegal to cruise in the right lane, and yes the police to catch people for doing it.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Driver education is the key to getting things moving freely and properly, more laws or harsher penalties doesnt solve the issue at all, it only empowers those entitled morons who like to hog the passing lane going nowhere with a long line of vehicles behind them.

The cops wont pull them over but will target the person who passes them on the left lane out of frustration, its a complete farcebackwards situation.

The law clearly states keep left and unless actually passing another vehicle should be in the furtherest left lane as possible, and dont get me started on those damn truck drivers.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

Tailgating and centre lane hogging were made offences here in Scotland some years ago... nothing scarier than some idiot in a white van, BMW or Audi roaring up behind you and monstering you to get out of the way... and that's on a normal road, not motorways.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Seems dangerous to allow cops to be judge, jury and executioner in these situations, based simply on a few seconds of observational evidence. It would have to be pretty obvious, I'd hope - and then you have the problem of getting the driver off the road without obstructing traffic or causing an accident. Plus, my definition of tailgating is "driving close enough to the car ahead of you regardless of speed to stop anyone changing lanes in front of you", although that appears to be standard operating procedure here locally...

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Since running red lights is not even enforced, I am not optimistic.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

If you can't horn then what is it for????

5 ( +6 / -1 )

UNLIMITED POWER!! Rougai's are going to run with this. We may even see a generation of Japanese Karen's born from this law. "I felt scared" "That driver seemed aggressive". He said, she said, they said. Everything up for interpretation. Don't let someone who is driving a small K-car ( who feels entitled and / or jealous ), spot your BMW behind him. "I OWN the road". "I feel pressured by you". "I could have lost control of my car on these ultra thin tires".

I do not believe it's anybody's responsibility to consider someone else's fear. If you fear being behind the wheel, you cannot blame others for that.

In other news, we are starting to see a spike in the sales of car dash-cams.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

@Redtail Swift - In other news, we are starting to see a spike in the sales of car dash-cams.

These may help, though from experience of witnessing a car crash in full 1920 x 1080 and offering the file to the police; they don't seem to know what to do with them, nor where they particularly interested.

To get evidence of tailgating, you need the higher spec models that include the rear-facing camera.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

I’ve been break checked several times by butt hole drivers. Tailgate drivers don’t really bother me coz I just go slower. There are many reckless ratbag drinkers in Japan who desperately need to be pulled into line. However, these laws to be enforced and reinforced regularly and not just a one-off blitz.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Don't worry and don't expect anything, from memory ringing your bicycles bell too many times will "on paper" bring the same penalties. It's just the results of old men filling their time making laws that are usless and unenforced. Might be one or two after dash footage on TV but it's never going to be the norm.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

It is already illegal to cruise in the right lane, and yes the police to catch people for doing it

If the speed limit is 80kph, you can drive up to about 90kph with 100kph being at a high risk to be stopped. The car that is driving behind you flashing their lights is probably going faster than this and will get the ticket before the cruiser does.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I know a guy, calm and sweet as anything, but once in a car he changes into a crazy guy. Can't understand such a dramatic change once he's in the car. Speeding, shouting and swearing at other drivers, getting out of the car to start a fight, tailgating, the list goes on. That's what I call road rage and yes, his licence should be taken away from him before he does any damage

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I’m buying a camera when next payday rolls around - still currently working out finances after the Covid hit...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

if you don't want to get brake-checked, stop tailgating or give people more space. It's perfectly acceptable to get close to another car if there's lots of traffic and people have slowed down because of it or if you're in a traffic jam. But I've experienced drivers who may not necessarily be tailgating but are less than 3 car lengths or a 3 - 4 second gap when I'm driving a reasonable 40 - 60kmh on standard roads. On highways if you're doing around 100kmh it should 6 - 7 car lengths. In almost 100% of cases, the car behind is responsible for hitting the car in front regardless if they're brake checking or not. They could claim something ran out in front or that they braked cause a pedestrian made a move that startled rhem. I know it's frustrating when people drive too slow or are in the fast lane but getting to close to them isn't the solution. Flashing your high beams from a safe distance may be enough to get them to speed up or get in the slow lane.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

been driving here for almost 10 years. I really dont care if someone is so close behind me lol... wanna bump? then pay for it.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I hope somewhere on the flyer there was also a note that anyone getting on the expressway at under 70kph will also have there license taken away.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

About time! The fine could be more and I hope cops will be available to enforce this new law!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

been driving here for almost 10 years. I really dont care if someone is so close behind me lol... wanna bump? then pay for it.

I don't think that the law is being tightened to reduce a few rear end collisions, but about preventing motorway pile ups.

Often tailgaters are not aggressive drivers, but people quite passively following the car in front as though it provides them with some sort of protective cloak, oblivious to what their stopping distance would be.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

clap clap clap clap clap. .yes finally and I hope this reduces this horrible driving practice.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Now if they can do more to give out speeding tickets in local roads that have posted speed limit signs and cars zoom past police like they aren't even there. I see cars zooming at over 50 kph to 70 kph on a posted 30 kph and police car stopped at a stop sign who just goes straight and does nothing to stop the speeder. The locals have said police do not stop speeders nor care to stop them. They are more worried about seat belts.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Excellent news! I hate tailgaters. I immediately slow down by 30km/h if being tailgated.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Sometimes driving here i feel too many people thought playing mario cart was a driving lesson. Tailgating, understing, sitting in middle or right lane, this list goes on.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

If you getting tailgated get out of the god damn way. Move to the left lane.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Bjorn Tomention - If you getting tailgated get out of the god damn way. Move to the left lane.

What do you do if it's a single lane road and you are doing the speed limit?

Tailgating is a form of bullying and intimidation. Drivers who use their cars for intimidation or as weapons should lose their licence forever.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Germany has this law since at least 20 years.

I cannot recall exactlty how it works, but radar measure the time gap between the tailgater and the car in front.

So it is not a fixed distance but in relation to the speed.

And Germany still has most of its highway witout any speed limit.

I find that a very wise measure to reduce accident and due to road rage by selfish drivers.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

The problem with Japan is that old drivers don't get updated on new rules, they've built bad habit and care not about changing how they drive.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Are they going to teach k-car drivers and truckies to keep left, too? Sick and tired of them hogging the right lane.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Bjorn Tomention - If you getting tailgated get out of the god damn way. Move to the left lane.

What do you do if it's a single lane road and you are doing the speed limit?

Obviously if there is no left lane then the car cannot move to it. On a single road lane you just have to be patient. I must have spent months of my life stuck behind some old fella in his 'Tanbo Porsche' (K-truck) as he dawdled along, happily oblivious to the impatient mob behind him.

On dual carriageways I have to admit I'm a little bit less tolerant of folk who sit in the right lane holding up the flow. I might give them the odd flash if I think they are taking the pis5 for a bit too long. My missus does it and it drives me nuts and then drives her nuts when I tell her to get left.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Got a drive camera in my car last time I took it to the police after been tailgated then the guy overtook me and threw the brakes on all on cam they didnt even want to know about it....this means nothing

8 ( +8 / -0 )

@Northernlife, I bet the cops made sure to to know all about you though eh!

I think @Disillusioned had a similarish tale of police incompetence.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

So of course if there isnt a left lane then they cant move to it can they sheesh , think about it.

My comment was directed at those morons who sit in the outside lane on the highway, or did i use the wrong colored crayon for you to understand it.

If you getting tail gated the worst thing you can do is brake check some one, didnt you even read that is also a punishable road rage offence ?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Best way to avoid this issue and many more when driving in Japan... Take public transportation.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@clippetyclop yeah ive given up on them long ago...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think the punishment is too harsh and ambiguous to interpret and prosecute.

Too many gray zones.

Why haven't the authorities been able to quell/dismantle the "bosozuku" after all these years of nuisance?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

just like tailgating, i have one more bugbear.: the tendency of local drivers to NOT turn on driving lights when it gets to twilight and dusk .... and during heavy rain and the snow season.

There seems to be a tendency for drivers here to turn on their driving lights only when it turns pitch black. Cars can be difficult to see, however, in twilight and dusk.

It seems that newer and higher end car models have lights that automatically switch on when it grows dark. This is good, but not all cars have this feature, and there’s reluctance for drivers to switch on their lights to account for lighting conditions.

This is also true when driving in rainy / snowy / foggy conditions. There have been times in daylight hours when I have not been able to see the many (often white) cars and farm trucks driving in such weather conditions. I don’t come from a snowy country, but I do know that switching on my lights is essential for visibility in mid-winter snowfalls or heavy rainfall. Those drivers, who apparently have lived their entire lives in such conditions, often don’t switch on their lights at those times.

Stunning!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The revised law defines road rage as "obstructive driving," which includes aggressive tailgating, horn use and sudden braking meant to hamper driving of other vehicles.

I believe it's "obstructive driving" that causes road rage when drivers can't get past someone hogging the right lane next to someone in the left lane...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think trucks using right lane is something new especially in residential areas where a lot of vehicles are turning left from left lane. Used to be they would stay in left lane, now I see more and more trucks in right lane so they don’t have to stop frequently when cars turn left or other cars merge into traffic.

back in the 80’s, rarely saw anyone use horn. Now too many are not patient and lay on the horn. Drives me crazy. Don’t sleep late and get on the road 10-15 min more earlier. Then you won’t have to speed to get to work.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

*@blvtzpk** It seems that newer and higher end car models have lights that automatically switch on when it grows dark. This is good, but not all cars have this feature, and there’s reluctance for drivers to switch on their lights to account for lighting conditions.*

But you have to engage the auto switch! And that's what these people don't do.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Should've done all that from the moment cars were invented.

Also, they should add going through red lights, not indicating before turning, and not stopping for pedestrians on zebra crossing while they're at it.

It might be good idea if they actually enforced their own laws.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

So with my rear camera, can I take the recordings to the police showing the tailgater's license plates and such? Also, if I can't use my horn, and I see someone reversing into my car, what am I to do? Send smoke signals?

I also think the traffic police should set new guidelines as to how far you are to be behind the car in front of you. I ALWAYS do 1 car length distance, but other idiots see it as a space snd roar in the space thus closing the safety gap between cars.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Wow! Three months in the gray bar hotel and a close to $5000 fine for simple tailgating. That same violation would rate a couple of hundred dollar ticket and a trip to traffic school in most of the US., all of the above accomplished on line from the comfort of one's home.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"I think trucks using right lane is something new especially in residential areas where a lot of vehicles are turning left from left lane. Used to be they would stay in left lane, now I see more and more trucks in right lane so they don’t have to stop frequently when cars turn left or other cars merge into traffic."

I had to remember which side of the road one drives on in Japan to make sense of this comment, lol. I wonder how many other foreign readers missed this?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"ust like tailgating, i have one more bugbear.: the tendency of local drivers to NOT turn on driving lights when it gets to twilight and dusk .... and during heavy rain and the snow season."

It is understandable. My two old Audis would be viewed as achingly vintage by most, but I love them. Simple, mechanical analog cars with no TV screens or "infotainment". Drivers cars. But whenever I travel for my work I have to rent modern cars and every single one of them has instruments that are lit regardless of whether or not the headlights are on. On my older cars if the lights are off, the instrument lights are off. When it gets dark you know your headlights are off because the guages become hard to read. But on newer cars on a lit highway there is nothing obvious inside the car to tell the driver the lights aren't on. Most have daylight running lights too, adding to the confusion. All you have is this silly little green light on the dash to tell you if your lights are on or not, and the icon and its coloring are not consistent among different brands of car. So call me guilty as charged but I have failed from time to time to notice my rental car's headlights were not on when they should be. Perhaps rules should be amended so that guages are not illuminated when the lights are off?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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