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10. Sharing the Road

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Sharing with Carpools

Carpooling and bus riding are useful ways to save fuel and reduce the number of vehicles using highways in heavy commute traffic. The benefits of carpooling include:

  • reduced wear and tear on your vehicle
  • reduced costs for car maintenance, gas, and possibly insurance rates
  • it provides a customized transportation service
  • reduced stress
  • reduced need for parking
  • increased free time for riders
  • if a carpool lane is available, trips may take less time
  • reduced pollution due to auto emissions
  • Car ownership is not required to carpool. You can carpool with other people who are looking for passengers to share commute expenses. You should check your insurance coverage if you decide to carpool. Some policies offer rate reductions for ridesharing.

    Some freeways have special lanes and on-ramps for carpools. Using a carpool lane requires a minimum of 2 or 3 people in a vehicle, including the driver. Signs at the on-ramp or along the freeway tell you the number of people needed to use the lane and the days and hours that the requirement applies.

    The pavement of carpool lanes is marked with white diamond symbols and the words " CARPOOL LANE ." Some freeways may have special lanes for buses only, or for buses and carpools only. This lane is also marked by the diamond symbol.

    One or more sets of parallel solid yellow lines are used to separate carpool lanes from normal traffic lanes. Do not cross over these lines to enter or exit the carpool lane. Wait until the lines are broken or for some other designated place to enter or exit the lane.

    Unless otherwise posted, motorcyclists may use designated carpool lanes.

    Carpool lanes cover 925 lane miles of the California state highway system and plans are underway to double this system over the next 20 years.

    For successful carpooling, you should:

  • decide who will drive and when
  • give everyone a list with each carpooler's phone number
  • choose a convenient pick up location (i.e., pick up each carpooler at home, meet in a central location such as a Park and Ride lot, or maybe a combination of these)
  • set up a schedule and stick to it-- make sure everyone knows the schedule and is notified of changes and how long you will wait for tardy riders
  • establish a fare-- if you share the driving equally, you don't need to exchange money, but if one person drives, you can simply agree on a mutually acceptable fare
  • establish guidelines on smoking, eating, drinking, playing the radio or tape player, and seating arrangements
  • In high-density traffic areas, you may sometimes see an entire street, or a few traffic lanes on a street, marked with cones. The cones indicate that a lane or street is being used differently. For example, to help relieve congestion at a concert, sports, or other cultural event, entire streets or a few lanes will be used for traffic going in the opposite direction from what is "normal" until the traffic congestion is cleared.

    Lesson Summary


      

    Lesson 10 Quiz


    You will now answer 5 questions to test what you learned during this lesson. You must answer all questions correctly to receive completion credit for this lesson. You may answer the questions as many times as necessary to get them right.

    You should review the lesson material if you don't do well on the quiz.

    1. In the United States, a bicyclist is killed:


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    2. The most common collision in a work zone is from:


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    3. Pedestrians comprise about what ratio of traffic fatalities?


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    4. An orange trianglular sign on the back of a vehicle means:


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    5. If you fail to stop for a school bus with flashing red lights:


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