Drivers aren’t adopting new ‘slow poke’ law

Published 5:19 pm Tuesday, March 24, 2015

That new “slow poke” law passed by the Alabama legislature a couple of weeks ago has become a little slow to set in for some automobile drivers.

Of course, I am talking about the law requiring drivers to merge to the right lane and let faster drivers pass in the left lane. I asked a friend in the highway department how drivers are responding and he told me, “There are still defiant drivers who are too stubborn to pull over.” “But, hopefully fines will change the minds of some,” he said.

He went on to say he could not understand why some drivers exhibit a different attitude when they get behind the wheel. “I think it is the same attitude they display in road rage,” he added.

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Well, I am not sure how well this law is doing across the entire state, but I am reading more and more on the Internet of drivers disobeying it. And, I am witnessing it, too.

You really don’t have to go very far to see it in action around here. Just down the road at Perdido Creek, I lose count of those slow drivers staying in the left lane as they travel Highway 31 east. And that highwayman is exactly right. They are totally defiant and straightforward stubborn.

Atmore’s 1950-1955 Chamber of Commerce was regarded as highly innovated and spirited. Mayor H.H. Dees often said they were the most qualified group representing our city.

And, rightfully so, as some were formally college trained in public relations and business. I remember their close association with WALA Channel 10 TV in Mobile. It seems they were always being interviewed on that channel, promoting Atmore to the fullest. That TV station always boasted how the chamber promoted Atmore by having motorists pull over for donuts and coffee and snap pictures of them standing at the big Alabama-Florida welcome sign.

And, standing in the peach orchard amid blossoms and fruit at State Farm for photos was also very effective. But pictures of people working in the Irish potato grading sheds were among the favorites of the TV station.

Sam and Jennie Ford and George Keenan were just a few of prominent leaders back then.

Yes, these folks were instrumental setting the tone for leadership and promoting Atmore.

Now, let us take a look at some news from 1955.
Two ECHS students, Bobby Barnes and Gordon Bryars, were selected to attend Boy’s State at the University of Alabama. Sponsored by American Legion Post #90, they were among several receiving statewide recognition that year.

Sam Jack Cassidy received an honor that year as a member of the Crimson Tide. The former ECHS football standout was selected “the All-Around athlete” at the Capstone.

J. Whisenhunt, principal of Escambia County Training School, resigned his position to take a similar position with the Anniston School System.

Brooks Memorial Baptist Church ordained two outstanding local pastors, Douglas White and Wilmer (Will) Baker. These two men enjoyed outstanding careers in the field of religion. Will, by the way was one of the featured speakers at his recent ECHS class reunion here.

The real big news came in the month of May when a brand new Chevrolet from Gerlach Motor Company was awarded to J.G. Toney for his selling the most subscriptions in the Advance subscription contest. The Bratt resident edged out two area ladies by less than six subscriptions to capture the big prize.

Advance publisher Martin Ritchie declared it to be the most successful subscription drive on record. I asked Lynn Toney one time while visiting former WATM radio man Jimmy Cruise at WEAR if he were related to this big winner. I believe he told me he was not.

By the way, Toney, that popular TV showman and weatherman, died a few years ago. He became an ordained Baptist minister following his Channel 3 retirement.

Next week, we will feature two former professionals, Mike Roberts and Covington County’s Phillip Rawls, who had stopovers here in their brilliant careers. And, we will tell you about two area men who received a patent to manufacture a Hadacol-like product in the 1940s and 1950s.

Well, that’s all this week. I will have more from Atmore’s past next week.

You can email Lowell McGill at