Look Out for Diamonds on Michigan Highways – New Traffic Law Could Easily Earn You a Ticket
Some highways in Michigan are set to get a makeover that could cost you a ticket if you're not careful. High Occupancy, or HOV, lanes are coming to Michigan.
The state just enacted a law to allow these lanes on the state's freeways. Importantly, if you are not using the lanes correctly, you can be pulled over and ticketed.
What Are HOV/High Occupancy Vehicle Lanes?
HOV lanes generally are only open to cars that have 2 or more passengers. They're seen as a way to promote carpooling and alleviate vehicle traffic in heavily congested urban areas where thousands of people commute as the only passengers in their cars.
HOV lanes are universally identified with diamonds on the highway pavement to designate those lanes are not for single drivers.
Michigan joins about half of the other states in having HOV lanes in their freeway system.
Where are HOV Lanes in Michigan
Just one section of HOV lanes will be set up in Michigan at onset. Located on I-75 in metro Detroit in Oakland County. The lanes will be in use only during the morning and afternoon weekday rush hours.
The Michigan Department of Transportation shared these specifics on a podcast episode dedicated to the introduction of HOV lanes:
They will use the left lane in each direction of I-75 between 12 Mile Road and South Boulevard.
They will operate as HOV lanes during peak travel times: 6 - 9 a.m. and 3 - 6 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. During those times, vehicles must have at least two human occupants to legally use the lanes.
State and local police will monitor the safe movement of vehicles in the HOV lanes to ensure drivers have the proper number of occupants. Civil infractions will be issued to violators.
Motorcycles, transit busses, first responders, and emergency vehicles are exempt from occupant requirements.
It's not difficult to imagine more HOV lanes coming to areas of Detroit and Grand Rapids eventually.
Reaction was, of course, swift on social media.
Should be fun to watch this. People in Michigan have never experienced HOV before. Bet it fails. Drivers won’t care and police wont enforce.
We can’t handle roundabouts yet alone HOV lanes.
HOV lanes are terrible for michigan, practically everyone commutes alone. A combination of the spread out nature of the population and no mass transit options leads everyone to drive.
That last point is a very good one. Michigan never built a mass transit/commuter rail system for Detroit and allowed nearly unchecked sprawl into suburbs and exurbs.
Check out these roads to drive across Michigan - open to you no matter how many people are along for the ride with you.