Informal Poll Raises Concerns That Hybrids Will Clog California's HOV Lanes

By a 6-1 ratio in an informal survey, San Jose Mercury News readers -- including many hybrid owners -- say solo drivers of hybrids such as the Toyota Prius or Honda Insight should be kept out of carpool lanes.

Published: 24-Jan-2005

Solo drivers in certain hybrid cars may soon enjoy a great commuting perk on California freeways: using a carpool lane to zip to work.

But is it a good idea?

There is growing angst over the hybrid-carpool issue, after a recent study in Virginia where hybrids have clogged the carpool lanes in the suburbs around Washington, D.C., to the point of rendering them useless. Bay Area transportation planners fear a hybrid exemption will kill a parallel attempt to charge solo drivers to use carpool lanes.

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