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Roadshow: Why would a driver with HOV stickers avoid the carpool lane?

Q Your response to those who are irritated by cars with HOV stickers not taking advantage of the perk missed two important points. My wife has green stickers on her car and doesn’t always jump into the carpool lane for two safety reasons.
First, if she is only going a short distance on the highway she won’t cross multiple lanes of traffic to get into the HOV lane and then have to cross multiple lanes again to exit. Lane changes on California highways can be a harrowing experience.
Second, if the speed in the HOV lane is above the posted speed limit or at a speed she feels is uncomfortable she won’t get into the HOV lane.
Pete Henderson
A Your wife is a savvy driver. Others should follow her habits.
Q You published a letter from Rena Segovia regarding HOV cars with stickers running slower in non-HOV lanes and your response was, “Going slower means they may be trying to extend their battery range.”
While I drive the most hated vehicle on the road, a Prius V, I also cannot tolerate people driving slower to extend their mileage or battery range. If your desire is to increase your range or mileage, move to a lane that is traveling at your speed or slower.
I am not so intent on getting the maximum mileage that I impede traffic, regardless of speed. I always flow with the traffic of the lane I’m in.
Steve Travis
Ben Lomond
A Steve, you and Mrs. Henderson are reducing so much road rage. Road boulders rank high on the list of pet peeves across the nation.

Like Mr. Roadshow’s Facebook page for more questions and answers about Bay Area roads, freeways and commuting.
Q Regarding hybrid vehicles and EVs with carpool stickers not using the HOV lane, it could easily be due to few entry and exit points. When I take Washington Boulevard to Interstate 680 south in Fremont in my electric Bolt, I have to drive over a mile before I can legally enter the HOV lane.
Likewise, if I plan on exiting 680 onto Scott Creek Road, I can’t use the HOV lane at all because the next break is at Highway 237 in Milpitas.
Bill Mattos
A This will eventually change. In a few years, drivers will be able to enter or exit the 680 carpool lane at almost any location. That will be true on almost all carpool-to-express lane conversions.
Q Mr. Roadshow, enough with the Prius praise. Probably the worst drivers on the planet, excluding BMW drivers. I will now be using your column to light my barbecue.
Keith Wilson
Mountain View
A With the recent heat waves and frequent Spare the Air days, we should not be barbecuing. So don’t torch my column! Please.
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