MONROE COUNTY, Fla. – A man from Pittsburgh is accused of speeding down the center turn lane on U.S. 1 in bumper-to-bumper traffic and nearly causing several crashes, the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office said Sunday.
The Pennsylvania man, 55-year-old Ronald Keith Grace, was arrested and taken to jail following the Saturday afternoon incident.
Grace was charged with reckless driving and cited for speeding and unlawful use of a turn lane, deputies said.
A deputy was on patrol at 2 p.m. near Mile Marker 82.5 when he saw a black Toyota Highlander heading south in the center turn lane at 63 mph, according to a news release from investigators.
The deputy watched as another driver entered the center lane to turn, causing the Toyota driver -- now confirmed to be Grace, deputies said -- to slam on his brakes, swerve, almost hit another vehicle, and then come to an abrupt stop.
The deputy pulled behind the Toyota and performed a traffic stop in the center turn lane.
When he asked Grace why he was driving the way he was, Grace replied he was tired of sitting in traffic, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Drivers passing the traffic stop were clapping their hands and honking their horns, with one motorist saying Grace nearly struck a pedestrian before the deputy stopped him, authorities noted in their report.