Thursday, May 10, 2007

Citizen Carpool Police Discussion - Part II

I talked about this a couple weeks ago-- the proposed new hotline for drivers to report carpool lane violators. There were some great comments and discussions going on since then from BART Musings visitors.

So today, I had to drive to San Jose for work. I tested just how easy or hard it will be to memorize the license plate number of a car zooming past me in the carpool lane.

I was going about 35 mph, and the solo drivers in the carpool lane were driving about 65 mph. I had about 2 seconds to glance at and memorize the license plate number while trying to pay attention to what's going on in front of me in my own jammed lane. I was able to memorize the number but it was not easy to keep track of everything around me that's going on....I can definitely see how hard it will be to have to call in right there and then and report the violator's license plate number!

Sort of a dangerous task! Harder than I thought. I think this is not a good solution. The only viable options are 1) more CHP during carpool hours, or 2) install a camera device over the carpool lanes like what they have on the bridge toll plazas and a camera snaps when someone is violating the carpool rule. Although this means there needs to be some infrared technology to sense the human body presence in the passenger seats. Might be too advanced for the state.


Anonymous said...

I can think of a couple of situations where this may be more useful than your scenario. If you're carpooling and in the HOV lane it should be easy enough to read the license plate of a solo driver in front of you (although what with tinted windows and all, it's often hard to tell who's legitimate and who isn't)! Also, when you're in the leftmost "normal" lane and a solo driver cuts you off while skipping in and out of the HOV lane (happened several times to me traveling NB on 80 towards the Carquinez bridge recently during the afternoon commute) you can have your revenge!

Anonymous said...

Yes, Comrade, we should become a police state with cameras enforcing the law. You should research how camera traffic enforcement works (and who profits) before spouting nonsense.