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No time for Diamond Lanes?

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Boston and...
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3,720 posts
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No time for Diamond Lanes?

The HOV lane signs on several freeways do not give times. Does this mean, "All the time"? (I saw people driving "solo" in them - just as they frequently do during "on" hours on the Nimitz in the Bay Area - which doesn't help answer this.)

In particular, I drove across the basin a couple of weeks ago (LAX to the Norton Simon in Pasadena) and saw for the first time the Harbor Freeway (110) with THREE diamond lanes in each direction, in addition to seven regular lanes, at times. Wow. I was alone, so I only marveled. But this week, I'm with my son, and so it really matters.

I am embarrassed about asking this, as I lived in LA for several years - obviously a long time ago - but I don't know where else to ask, and one prevailing tenet on Trip is that "there is no stupid question".

Thank you.

West Hollywood...
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for Los Angeles
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1. Re: No time for Diamond Lanes?

See #4 of the attached "11 things you should know about car pool lanes":


In short, the lanes are open 24 hours per day.

Newbury Park...
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2. Re: No time for Diamond Lanes?

Also - if you have a hybrid car that gets over a certain mph (aka Toyota Prius) and you applied for a special sticker you can use the HOV's as a solo driver. Only a certain number of passes were given out though and you have to have one to take advantage of this. Otherwise car pool lanes are two or more persons and are 24 hours a day here. You can also only cross into and out of them and the breaks (unlike other states where you can go in and out at will).

Los Angeles
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3. Re: No time for Diamond Lanes?

Usually you have well writtin signes at entrance/exits of the diamond lanes. Most of the times the are only carpoollanes during rush hours, at other times anyone can use them

Topanga, California
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4. Re: No time for Diamond Lanes?

"Most of the times the are only carpool lanes during rush hours, at other times anyone can use them."

In Southern California? I don't think so!

Boston and...
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5. Re: No time for Diamond Lanes?

Thank you all, again.

Juxie, I know about the yellow sticker as it works in northern California, too. But, as in southern California, many who don't have it still fly the diamond lanes solo without any apparent enforcement, anymore. And Alex and FromTheBu, I'm guessing HopSkipJump meant "restricted" rather than "open".

Los Angeles, CA
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6. Re: No time for Diamond Lanes?

Great question. And something that's always stumped me. California has two different rules for carpool lanes. One for Northern California and one for Southern California. Same state, different rules. Makes no sense.

Carpool lanes in Northern California have dotted white lines. You can get in and out of them any time, and they're restricted to carpools only during the posted rush hour times. Other times, anyone can drive in them.

Lanes in Southern California have solid double yellow lines except for dotted white lines where you enter and exit. You're not supposed to cross over the double yellow line (although drivers do it all the time). They're restricted to carpools all the time.

I think CalTrans came up with two different ideas decades ago when they designed the carpool lanes to see which one worked. I guess both plans work so they don't change either one. I like the Northern California plan better because when I'm driving solo during non-rush hours, I can pop over in that Diamond Lane.

7. Re: No time for Diamond Lanes?

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