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16 February 2006



o you have an HOV lane where you live? These are specific lanes on the highway which MUST contain a minimum of at least 2 people in the car. Single cars are prohibited from using this lane. Here in Houston, the HOV lane is patroled quite often and the rules are strictly enforced.

Two different females tried to explain to the cop they were permitted to use the HOV lane since they were pregnant. It didn't work.

However, that does not deter drivers from coming up with all kinds of ways to circumvent the situation. Here are a few explanations and items that people have used in order to try and use the HOV lanes.

In January 2006, a driver was stopped and ticketed on U.S. 36 in Westminster, Colorado, for driving in a carpool lane with a mannequin he created by applying make-up to a wig stand and affixing it to clothing stuffed with newspapers (then strapping the finished product into the passenger seat with a seatbelt).

In November 2005, Kevin Morgan of Petaluma, California, was handed a $351 citation in Marinwood for driving in a carpool lane with a kickboxing dummy propped up in the passenger seat. The dummy was dressed in a baseball cap and Miami Dolphins windbreaker and wore a seatbelt.

In 2001, a policeman in Atlanta pulled over a carpool lane violator who'd positioned a dummy in the passenger seat. The mannequin in question was wearing a sports jacket, a pair of sunglasses, and a baseball hat. Best of all, he had been positioned so he was holding a newspaper.

Ruses motorists have used to conceal their driving alone in car-pool lanes:
Store mannequins, blow-up dolls, kickboxing dummies, cardboard cut-outs, and even balloons (with faces drawn on them in marking pen).

Other No- No's are:
Buckling the passenger-side seat belt and pretending to talk to someone reclining in that seat.

Covering an empty infant seat with a blanket or placing a doll in it.

Taping a styrofoam wig stand to the passenger headrest and topping it with a blonde wig.

Strapping the family pooch into the passenger seat.

And no, lone hearse drivers transporting clients to their final rests cannot use the HOV lane.

Observations and Questions
Would you or have you ever used the HOV lane illegaly?

Birth Announcements and Dusty Death Notices
Born this day in 1935 Sonny Bono, Detroit MI, singer (Sonny & Cher, Mayor-R-Palm Springs CA). And in our death notices we find in 1996 MacLean Stevenson actor (MASH), dies of heart attack at 66.
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