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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Got my stickers a few weeks ago and have found being able to drive in the HOV lanes during commute times useful, but not as helpful as I'd anticipated.

Seems that when traffic is stopped, the HOV lanes are either stopped or moving very slowly. I've observed the other cars in the HOV lanes for a few weeks now and it seems like at least 25% of them only have one occupant and no stickers. Sure, some of them might have a kid in a car seat in the back, or a very short passenger, but I'll bet that most of them are in the lane illegally. The CHP doesn't seem to do much HOV enforcement in this area (I680 Concord-Dublin).

How are things where you drive? Are there lots of people in the HOV lanes who shouldn't be there?
 

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The HOV lanes aren't that useful to me based on my commute routes. They HOV lanes on Lawrence Expressway are horrible, as they are in the slow lane. During peak commute hours, I see a high number of HOV cheaters using the lane as an extended merge or exit lane. I also commute on Hwy 101 South from Sunnyvale to San Jose. That's an opposite commute, so there's virtually no one in the HOV lane.
 

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We're in the HOV lane, but we're in Northern CA. I drive with others, so we can use the lane. Around here, it depends which freeway your on. Some freeways, the HOV lane is useless. The ones we use, the HOV lane is usefull. Tonight it really helped out too. The problem is when traffic is at a stop next to you. It creates a dangerous situation, because morons in the adjacent lane get impatient and dart out in front of the HOV cars. I've seen a lot of close calls.
 

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In the last 20+ years of Bay area commuting (5 days per week - 280 and 101) I've seen the CHP pull carpool cheaters over less than 5 times.

At least 50% of the cars in the carpool lane are single occupant. Luckily I'm only using about 5 miles of it in my current commute.

Good Luck.
 

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In a an area that doesn't cooperate in enforcing federal pot laws or federal immigration criminal holds, and ignores beach access rules, you expect strict HOV enforcement? Dream on.
 

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In SoCal the HOV stickers help me greatly in a couple of ways:

1.) 405 freeway - generally a parking lot but can sometimes shave up to 30 mins per trip (I drive 80 miles roundtrip a day)
2.) 55 to 22 Freeways - 22 generally empty around 3 - 4 pm in the HOV while all lanes are backed up (longer commute around though)
3.) 110 and 10 Fastraks - Free instead of single person rate
4.) During offpeak hours acts as an additional lane to pass legally instead having to maneuver around some of our "better" drivers.

I think the situation in NoCal is way different though. Probably more Teslas, more EVs in general and lots people trying to get where you are going.

I do think the situation in SoCal is starting to shift towards that way, but when I use the HOV lane, I barely see other HOV eligible cars. It might also be because I leave earlier than most. But Gen1 Volts were what I saw a lot of when my schedule was different.
 

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I commute 101 from Morgan Hill and 85 through to 280.

Traffic has recently gotten considerably worse even at the 6am time I travel.

HOV lanes are often busy but I've done quite a lot of time study work (been driving this route for 20 years) and HOV access knocks at least 10-15 minutes off my commute. Doesn't sound like much but consider sitting still in traffic for that long and it really is.

Studies show that for a 30 mile commute, the mental different between taking 30 and 40 minutes is huge.
 

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Don't forget that most solo drivers aren't cheating, they participate in the fast-track toll program. One could debate at length if the state should limit clean vehicle sticker cars vs a money making exemption on which group should be excluded first.

Anyhow... I-15 in San Diego Co works quite well, but it has always been a special case of pretty much being a 4/5 lane private freeway. Now if they could just do something with ca78 and I-5...
 

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Don't forget that most solo drivers aren't cheating, they participate in the fast-track toll program. One could debate at length if the state should limit clean vehicle sticker cars vs a money making exemption on which group should be excluded first.

Anyhow... I-15 in San Diego Co works quite well, but it has always been a special case of pretty much being a 4/5 lane private freeway. Now if they could just do something with ca78 and I-5...

We have very little Fast-track toll programs in NorCal. Highways 101, 280 and 85 do not participate in these. Single drivers on these freeways are using the carpool lanes illegally.
 

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After a little research, The more elaborate lanes with the movable barrier machine and private on/off ramps are referred to as Express Lanes. It works out really well if you can use the special off ramps, but lord help you when you have to cross 6 lanes in a 1/4 mile to legally enter the diamond lane on a normal merging entry.

I don't see too many cheaters on those- the CHP vigorously patrols it, plus they have camera arrays near the Fast-Trak transponders. A lot of commercial vehicles use it as carpool or with fastrak toll readers. Not really all that many clean air sticker cars, but a few.
 

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I do the San Tomas Expressway commute twice each day. Mornings from Campbell to the 101 (and over to Fair Oaks) shaves about 15-20 minutes off the commute using the HOV lane. Evenings, the 101 is backed up so bad beginning around Lawrence that the HOV lane is pretty much useless - it's as slow (or sometimes slower!) than the non-HOV lanes, at least for chunks of the commute. San Tomas, though, is still much quicker in the HOV lane - by around 10-15 minutes. So overall, about 30 minutes/day saved using my LGSs (Little Green Stickers), with some days even more.

The LGSs and LWSs are due to expire in January 2019 - just over 25 months from now. By then, the utility of HOV lanes for EVs will be dramatically reduced, as the number of EVs on the road surges. On 1/1/2019, "real" HOV users (2 or more occupants in the vehicle) will see HOV utility skyrocket, while we single-occupant EV drivers will flood the traditional lanes and slow them down even more than they already are. I hope to have my Jetson's skymobile fully operational by then:)
 

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No HOV lanes within 180 miles, but they still are very useful to me. They keep all you who actually use them down in the Bay Area, Sacramento, and LA and out of my turf up here in Redding:)

#keepingmygreenstickersinthegloveboxandlovingit
 

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I use it daily. Pretty much every freeway in my vicinity has HOV. 10, 91, 60, 55, 22, 210, 405.
 

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I use it regularly on my work commutes. I can shave off about a half hour if traffic is really horrible. I agree, I see illegal use of the carpool lane every single day. Lots of solo drivers without a baby seat or passenger. I even see some nonqualifying Toyota Prius models with the green stickers, as these are the types that are not plug-in vehicles.
 

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In the Los Angles area, HOV lanes also often move no faster than the regular lanes and I routinely notice a significant proportion of solo riders with no stickers... Only once have I ever seen one pulled over. I use primarily the 210, 405, 170 and 5.
 

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When I do get them, They will come in handy, especially when using the freeway on-ramps. The on-ramp HOV lanes are usually empty.
I did see a CHP pull over a Prius on a freeway on-ramp once, even though he had green stickers, Once the driver pointed to the stickers the officer waved him on..the officer himself did a face-palm..
 

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CHP is a joke. They could actually have a positive effect on HOV traffic if they got off their arses and enforced the rules. Instead they issue speeding tickets. Every time they pull someone over on the freeway it causes a traffic jam. They're useless. AAA with a gun...
 

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I commute the 134 & 210 several times a week. I've noticed that the stickers make a big difference in the morning commute and only a slight difference on the evening commute.
 
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