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slugjo View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote slugjo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Aug 2006 at 10:20am
Hi PennyPrius. WRT motorcycles, it's a safety issue. There aren't enough motorcycles to jam up the express lanes, and there isn't an avalanch of new ones being added every day, like hybrids have been. I ride a motorcycle (not for commuting), and I know that they are a bad vehicle to be on when there is heavy congestion. They are not made for going slow or repeatedly stopping. I think you are right about most of the things you posted. IMHO it is the violators who are most of the congestion problem in the express lanes. Even NoSUV is right about traffic flow on 395, inside the beltway. It moves along just fine, barring accidents. And express lane planning and policy has to be a give & take, with public transportation, HOV, exceptions, etc. We don't need HOT.
p.s. My wife and I call the Prius the "Priapus." (Greek god of fertility, gardening) Go ahead and google him, and look at the pictures. Funny.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote n/a Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Aug 2006 at 11:52am
Penny, welcome to the discussion. I don't think anyone really hates hybrids, or those who drive them. I have said that I applaud hybrid drivers for taking steps that they feel are positive in addressing the issues.

I think most people on this side of the fence oppose the special treatment regarding the hybrid/HOV exemption. I have detailed several reasons for my opposition of the hybrid exemption including socio-economic discrimination and marketing manipulation/deception by the auto industry.

But we really need to understand the hybrid/HOV issue is more about moving commuters and managing traffic, and the hybrid/HOV exemption only adds to the problems here. ANY SOV car adds to traffic management problems.

Now, if you want to talk ecology; fill those hybrid seats on your way into and out of town which will take cars off the road reducing pollution and fuel consumption while you reduce traffic congestion! Please see my prior posts where I discuss the "Passenger" MPG comparison; a smart way to level the discussion on vehicle effeciency.

The smart answer (that hybrid owners do not want to hear) is to HOV commute. It goes a long way to solving so many problems and requires little changes in our lifestyle (beyond what most people in this area already do).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote PennyPrius Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Aug 2006 at 2:57pm
quote:
Originally posted by raymond
[br]Penny, welcome to the discussion. I don't think anyone really hates hybrids, or those who drive them. I have said that I applaud hybrid drivers for taking steps that they feel are positive in addressing the issues.

I think most people on this side of the fence oppose the special treatment regarding the hybrid/HOV exemption. I have detailed several reasons for my opposition of the hybrid exemption including socio-economic discrimination and marketing manipulation/deception by the auto industry.

But we really need to understand the hybrid/HOV issue is more about moving commuters and managing traffic, and the hybrid/HOV exemption only adds to the problems here. ANY SOV car adds to traffic management problems.

Now, if you want to talk ecology; fill those hybrid seats on your way into and out of town which will take cars off the road reducing pollution and fuel consumption while you reduce traffic congestion! Please see my prior posts where I discuss the "Passenger" MPG comparison; a smart way to level the discussion on vehicle effeciency.

The smart answer (that hybrid owners do not want to hear) is to HOV commute. It goes a long way to solving so many problems and requires little changes in our lifestyle (beyond what most people in this area already do).



From what I have read, it seems that people resent SOV's. Why doesn't anyone speak of the LEO's that also take advantage of their HOV status? They are driving (usually) big v-8 gas hogs solo but I have yet to see them mentioned. Also, motorcycles.

If HOV is strictly for High occupancy, than NO exemptions should be granted. Once one exemption is made, then we can make as many as we (the people) want, as long as our legislators agree. I still maintain that some exceptions are realistic and others not so much so. Personally, I think the timing of HOV should be extended beyond 6 PM. or perhaps after 6 make it HOV 2 instead of 3. The bottom line is that the regular lanes IMHO are too crowded and moving a few cars over to HOV makes good sense, if no more lanes are to be added.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rodmunera Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Aug 2006 at 3:28pm
Ok, 2 things:

Motorcycles (a dead horse that keeps on taking a beating): it's a safety issue, as explained in detail on other posts in this forum.

LEOs: It is actually Illegal for LEO's to drive SOV on HOV lanes while off-duty (e.g. on their way to work - on their way home). The exception is only for ON-DUTY LEO.

Whether off-duty LEOs get a pass from on-duty LEOs who are monitoring HOV as a professional courtesy is another matter entirely.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote PennyPrius Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Aug 2006 at 5:50pm
quote:
Originally posted by rodmunera
[br]Ok, 2 things:

Motorcycles (a dead horse that keeps on taking a beating): it's a safety issue, as explained in detail on other posts in this forum.

LEOs: It is actually Illegal for LEO's to drive SOV on HOV lanes while off-duty (e.g. on their way to work - on their way home). The exception is only for ON-DUTY LEO.

Whether off-duty LEOs get a pass from on-duty LEOs who are monitoring HOV as a professional courtesy is another matter entirely.




The following is taken from the VDOT website:

Exemptions to the Rules:

1. Motorcycles are permitted to use HOV lanes throughout Virginia during HOV hours.
2. Motorists traveling to and from Dulles International Airport on business are permitted to use I-66 inside the Beltway during HOV hours.
3. Vehicles powered exclusively by clean special fuel, including Hybrid gasoline/electric, hydrogen, hythane, methane, compressed natural gas, electricity, liquefied natural gas, liquefied petroleum gas, ethane, and solar energy and registered with clean special fuel license plates are permitted to use HOV lanes. Hybrid fuel vehicles (i.e., gasoline engines that are assisted with electricity) that are registered with clean special fuel license plates also qualify to use the HOV lanes. (See FAQ above for more information or visit www.dmvnow.com.)

Not all hybrids qualify for clean special fuel license plates, but the following do: Toyota Prius, Honda Insight, Honda Civic, 2005 Ford Escape, 2006 Ford Escape, 2006 Toyota Highlander, 2006 Lexus RX 400, 2006 Mercury Mariner, 2006 Honda Accord, 2007 Mercury Mariner, 2007 Lexus GS450h, 2007 Ford Escape.

4. Emergency vehicles (fire, ambulance, rescue) and law enforcement vehicles are exempt. Public utility vehicles are permitted to use HOV lanes when responding to emergency calls.


I interpret #4 as any Law enforcement vehicle which would include on and or off duty marked or unmarked cars. So an officer on the way to or from work in a vehicle issued to him/her for use on and off the job IS exempt and CAN use HOV.

That is my point. Where does one draw the lines for exemptions? Apparantly VA draws the line to include certain Hybrids, motorcycles, Law enforcement vehicles and vehicles with three or more people in them.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote n/a Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Aug 2006 at 3:44pm
Thanks for the update on VDOT exemption laws, I'm glad that the exemption is not a blanket 'free pass,' but identifies a few cars. Realistically there are few motorcycles and fewer LEO cars, compared to the thousands of SOV hybrids that clog the HOVs. (Although I think law makers and enforcers have applied a liberal interpretation of #4 in the name of national security. But who are we to analyze, we only know what we are told.)

This thread has an interesting title, "Tired of choking on hybrid fumes." Of course it's accurate, no matter if the smell is sulfur or CO2. Hybrids burn fossil fuels. Why the heck are they granted special exemptions?

Bottom line: ANY SOV contributes to our problems, HOV helps to solve them! HOT is discrimination!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote slugjo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Aug 2006 at 7:10pm
Yep. One of my vehicles gets over 40 mpg, and is a very low emissions vehicle, hardly needing to be tested, and another gets over 50. Neither one is a hybrid. I'll probably own a hybrid someday, unless I can get a hydrogen burner and a place to "gas" it up. I also have a vintage outboard engine I call the "Smoker and a Joker and a Midnight Toker" that gets a couple of miles per gallon and leaves a blue smoke trail over the water. I'm so ashamed.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NoSUV Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Aug 2006 at 11:46am
quote:
Originally posted by raymond
[br]Realistically there are few motorcycles and fewer LEO cars, compared to the thousands of SOV hybrids that clog the HOVs.



raymond - perhaps you missed what Penny said. To paraphrase: What clog?

Another quiz for you:
What happens to the express AND regular lanes if 300,000 more people move to the area? How about a million? 3 million? Are you going to tell us that HOV is going to solve the problem?

Yet still, on 395, regular lanes crawl and express lanes move above the speed limit. Perhaps, for now, I-395 needs to be decoupled from I-95.

And raymond - is Bob wrong or is it you on the smell?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote n/a Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Aug 2006 at 3:25pm
NoSUV, Penny said a lot of things, ex. "If HOV is strictly for High occupancy, than NO exemptions should be granted." (That is a quote, BTW, not a ficticious paraphrase) Some of what Penny says makes lots of sense, especially for a newcomer to the debate. And new ideas are always welcome.

Answer to your quiz: HOV commuting will go further to solve these problems than SOV hybrids will! And if the HOV lanes flow as well as you say, then once the SOV hybrids are cleared off they will be able to accomodate aditional HOV traffic that population growth will bring.

What was your question again?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote PennyPrius Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 Aug 2006 at 9:28am
I just reversed commuted from National Airport and what a surprise, (not) Regular NB lanes were literally bumper to bumper from the mixing bowl and beyond, down to Dale City where I got off. Of course as per my limited experience, the HOV lanes were free flowing with light traffic. This was from around 0830 to 0915 me headed SB. I saw one Trooper car with a stopped alledged violator before 0900 on the HOV lanes.

I either hit it right all the times I use the HOV's or there is not as large a clog as many onthis site maintain even with hybrid vehicles using the HOV.

I say they should try HOV 2 for a few months as an experiment and see if that aliviates some of the non HOV lane congestion on the 95/395 corridor.
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