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  1. #1
    Senior Member mikeybikes's Avatar
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    Is it ethical to drive in an HOV lane with an infant?

    My wife posited this question to me.

    She was driving to pick me up from work yesterday on our way to take our infant son to the hospital. He was in his car seat, so she used the HOV lane. Is it ethical? Doesn't it defeat the purpose of the HOV lane?
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  2. #2
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    HOV lanes I'm familiar with require at least two people in the car. And infant is still a person. Don't see any ethical problem.

  3. #3
    derailleurs are overrated bigbenaugust's Avatar
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    I always thought the rule for the HOV lane should only count licensed drivers. Alas, it only counts human beings, so you're off the hook.

    ... but what about a hearse?
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  4. #4
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    I can tell you that based on the court cases, this is perfectly legal in Washington state. It does not have to be an adult passenger. I can also tell you, based on the court cases, that you cannot drive in the HOV lane legally while pregnant with no other passenger. Several women have tried this and all have been convicted of a violation. But driving in the HOV lane with the baby in the car on your way home from the hospital after giving birth, no problem.
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    To bad we have no HOV lanes in Ohio.
    Mango is headed this way and we know how the Amish pack those window vans with people.
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  6. #6
    derailleurs are overrated bigbenaugust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MillCreek View Post
    I can tell you that based on the court cases, this is perfectly legal in Washington state. It does not have to be an adult passenger. I can also tell you, based on the court cases, that you cannot drive in the HOV lane legally while pregnant with no other passenger. Several women have tried this and all have been convicted of a violation. But driving in the HOV lane with the baby in the car on your way home from the hospital after giving birth, no problem.
    Now what if you give birth while driving in the HOV lane? Depending on the labor, I imagine the cop has to write pretty quick to get the ticket done before the baby is born.
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  7. #7
    Look! My Spine! RubenX's Avatar
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    Senior Member eja_ bottecchia's Avatar
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    If you kill a pregnant woman and her viable, unborn child it counts as a double homicide.

    If a pregnant woman, in her third trimester, drives on the HOV lane without another passenger she is fined.

    Gotta love our legal system!
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  9. #9
    Administrator CbadRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
    If you kill a pregnant woman and her viable, unborn child it counts as a double homicide.

    If a pregnant woman, in her third trimester, drives on the HOV lane without another passenger she is fined.

    Gotta love our legal system!
    I don't see a problem with it. HOV lanes are intended to reduce traffic congestion and encourage people to carpool.

    If pregnant women were allowed to use it, you'd get into the sticky area of making them have to prove pregnancy when they got pulled over. There would be women who were 3 weeks pregnant wanting to use the lane, or women who were just overweight but claiming to be pregnant.
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    Senior Member Keith99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigbenaugust View Post
    Now what if you give birth while driving in the HOV lane? Depending on the labor, I imagine the cop has to write pretty quick to get the ticket done before the baby is born.
    Despite the things many here say about cops my bet is one would not ticket a woman in labor in the HOV lane. Well at least not one who could at least make a decent argument whe was driving to the hospital.
    Perish any man who suspects that these men either did or suffered anything unseemly.

  11. #11
    derailleurs are overrated bigbenaugust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CbadRider View Post
    I don't see a problem with it. HOV lanes are intended to reduce traffic congestion and encourage people to carpool.

    If pregnant women were allowed to use it, you'd get into the sticky area of making them have to prove pregnancy when they got pulled over. There would be women who were 3 weeks pregnant wanting to use the lane, or women who were just overweight but claiming to be pregnant.
    Portable ultrasound unit and a sonographer in every police car.
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  12. #12
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    HOV lanes were invented to solve a problem by people that have no clue what the problem is or how to solve it. We had HOV lanes in the freeway outside of my office. The freeway had 5 lanes for everybody to use, then they took one to make an HOV lane leaving 4 lanes for everybody else. Now you have 4 very congested lanes, with traffic barely moving, and one empty lane with nobody in it. So instead of solving the problem, or even barely improving the problem, they made the problem worse. And they spent a very large amount of money to do it. When this freeway gets to an intersection with another freeway there are big overpasses and ramps to allow people to go from one freeway to another. Now that there are HOV lanes involved they had to build another set of large overpasses just for the HOV lanes.

  13. #13
    Senior Member mikeybikes's Avatar
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    bj, this wasn't to discuss the efficacy of HOV lanes. Don't be so serious.
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  14. #14
    Senior Member jdon's Avatar
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    If parents with kids need parking close to the store doors, how can driving in the HOV be wrong?

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by bjtesch View Post
    HOV lanes were invented to solve a problem by people that have no clue what the problem is or how to solve it. We had HOV lanes in the freeway outside of my office. The freeway had 5 lanes for everybody to use, then they took one to make an HOV lane leaving 4 lanes for everybody else. Now you have 4 very congested lanes, with traffic barely moving, and one empty lane with nobody in it. So instead of solving the problem, or even barely improving the problem, they made the problem worse. And they spent a very large amount of money to do it. When this freeway gets to an intersection with another freeway there are big overpasses and ramps to allow people to go from one freeway to another. Now that there are HOV lanes involved they had to build another set of large overpasses just for the HOV lanes.
    well, the main problem is that there are too many cars on the road at certain times in comparison to the carrying capacity of those congested roads.

    You can add capacity by increasing number of lanes, but that only works if you have lots of money and have available land. At other times in the day, those added lanes are completely useless and only serve to further the burden of road maintenance. Let's keep in mind, that adding lanes only pushes back the congestion further back and doesn't actually solve it. Like if you have two 3 lane highways merging into a 4 lane highway, you're still short 2 lanes on the merged highway. If you make the merged highway 6 lanes, then yes, you can alleviate the congestion, but what if that 6 lane highway merges with another 2 lane highway? you're going to be short by 2 lanes and that will mean congestion. If you keep adding lanes, you're eventually going to have a problem with the amount of space all of those lanes are going to eat up.


    Another idea is to stagger the road usage demand, so that the peak demand will never exceed the carrying capacity. It can be very cost effective, since the city doesn't need to add anything, but many businesses and people prefer the same old routine of going to work in the morning and going home in the evening.


    So, then, we're left with HOV lanes. You get rewarded if you carpool and nothing changes if you don't. By reducing those 3 lanes to 2, what they've done is reduce the capacity requirements for the merging highway. At best, you only need 5 lanes now, because single lanes are easier to merge together, while the regular lanes only need 2+2=4. Realistically, HOV lanes are the least worst idea stemming from bad urban planning.


    Also, have you ever tried crossing 5 or more lanes of congested highway traffic? It's not realistic.
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    Senior Member Will G's Avatar
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    I don't think infants should drive in the HOV lane. They can't even see over the wheel or touch the pedals.
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  17. #17
    derailleurs are overrated bigbenaugust's Avatar
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    But what about the hearse scenario? There are two people in the car... it's just that one of them is dead.
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    What cop is going to stop a hearse? I don't think you can count the deceased though, as that would open the door for the use of cremated remains.

  19. #19
    derailleurs are overrated bigbenaugust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jon c. View Post
    What cop is going to stop a hearse? I don't think you can count the deceased though, as that would open the door for the use of cremated remains.
    One who is really into catching carpool violators?
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  20. #20
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    Whatever floats her boat, just tell her to more over and let faster traffic pass (if she doesn't already). I freaken hate when people park it in HOV lane and serve as damn rolling road blocks. The super bonus when they can't read and think it's HOV lane all the time and not just during a week and certain hours. Cars with "baby on board" are the worst, followed closely by damn priuses.
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    Not a lot of people use it

  22. #22
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeybikes View Post
    bj, this wasn't to discuss the efficacy of HOV lanes. Don't be so serious.
    For some reason, I heard Beavis and Butthead laughing when I read this.

  23. #23
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    No, driving a car is not ethical

    I don't think infants should drive in the HOV lane. They can't even see over the wheel or touch the pedals.
    excellent point.
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    Senior Member eja_ bottecchia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CbadRider View Post
    I don't see a problem with it. HOV lanes are intended to reduce traffic congestion and encourage people to carpool.

    If pregnant women were allowed to use it, you'd get into the sticky area of making them have to prove pregnancy when they got pulled over. There would be women who were 3 weeks pregnant wanting to use the lane, or women who were just overweight but claiming to be pregnant.
    A pregnant driver on the HOV is not the issue that I was referring to. I understand the reasoning for HOV lanes, though in So.Cal. They don't seem to help much.

    The issue is how our legal system changes the definition of what "is" is depending on the situation.

    It makes for interesting contrasts along the way.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by eja_ bottecchia View Post
    If you kill a pregnant woman and her viable, unborn child it counts as a double homicide.

    If a pregnant woman, in her third trimester, drives on the HOV lane without another passenger she is fined.

    Gotta love our legal system!
    If a pregnant woman is convicted of a crime, her unborn child also goes to jail with her, flaunting the little person's USA inalienable right to due process.

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