Some time back in June, I hopefully had someone in the car with me to take this picture in front of my face while I was driving.
I've been taking the HOV lane to and from work for almost a year, and after passing so many stopped cars it just became a routine.
As I'm flying by stopped traffic, I used to think, "Wow, I'm saving so much time." Nowadays, my thoughts seem to be more along
the lines of,
"Man, I hope another jackass doesn't jump in front of me while I'm going 65, like they did the other day." So, I've become
used to it, I guess. In an effort to remind myself, I thought it'd be good to have a quick post about how awesome it is.
I have yet to sit in traffic with everyone else during a commute, so it's not easy for me to gauge the time savings I enjoy.
Even more tricky, I leave for work at varying times, and usually past the peak rush hour time, so there's that. Peak rush hour
sometimes affects the HOV lane, but always less than the other lanes. Traffic might be at a standstill in the other lanes, but
the HOV lane is always moving, and always moving comparatively faster if things are slowed down. The one exception I've seen has been when there
was an accident one morning in the HOV lane, and we had to merge out and then back in. That was probably my longest commute, and
I sat in traffic for an extra 20 minutes or so that day.
Currently, Alternative Fuel Vehicles (AFVs) are permitted to travel in the
HOV lanes of Atlanta, provided they have opted to apply for the AFV license
plate. According to the legalese of Georgia Code 40-2-86.1:
A special license plate to be issued for alternative fueled vehicles, which
license plate shall be similar in design to the license plate issued to all
other residents of the state except that the commissioner shall place a
distinctive logo or emblem on the license plate which shall distinguish the
vehicle as an alternative fueled vehicle eligible to travel in travel lanes
designated for such vehicles under paragraph (4) of subsection (a) of Code
Section 32-9-4. The words "alternative fueled vehicle" shall be imprinted on
such special license plate in lieu of the county name decal. The funds raised
by the sale of this license plate shall be deposited in the general fund.
I can't specifically measure how awesome being able to commute with the HOV lane has been, but
I know that there is some awesomeness, and I am the enjoyer of it! I hope the DOT keeps those
'AFV OK' signs up for many years.