Are officers after carpool violators? – Orange County Register

Q. I often take the I-405 from Long Beach to Mission Viejo on weekday mornings, and it seems that a high percentage of vehicles in the carpool lanes have only the driver in them. Is this violation being enforced at all?

– Ron Eomurian, Long Beach

A. Honk sees violators all of the time, too, and it irritates him as much as trying to find two matching socks in the morning.

Duane Graham, an officer and spokesman for the CHP out of its Westminster headquarters, said the agency must first respond to traffic collisions, hazards out in the lanes and disabled vehicles.

Drunks, speeders and those who don’t buckle up need to be dealt with first, too.

But the good officer certainly knows about the problem.

“It happens a lot,” he said of motorists who aren’t qualified to drive solo in carpool lanes but do. “We receive calls here, from concerned citizens. … Yes, we do enforce it.”

When the agency learns an area is suffering from a “higher saturation” of offenders, a team of CHP officers goes out to enforce the law, Graham said.

Honk asked him: If an officer is on patrol with no other calls, would he or she cite a carpool-lane violator?

Absolutely, Graham said.

Q. Dear Honk: Some motorcycles are very loud and seem to have no mufflers, as are required with cars. Are there no noise limits for motorcycles? I am usually startled when motorcycles pass by on the freeway.  A visitor to our neighborhood recently left his motorcycle idling next door; it was so loud we could hardly hear our TV.

– Donn Loe, Seal Beach

A. Now, Donn, Mrs. Honk will tell you the ol’ Honkster himself could use a muffler now and then.

But motorcycles most definitely must have one.

The California Vehicle Code says a motorcycle built since 1986 can’t be louder than 80 dBA; previous models can be noiser. Caltrans says that measurement of decibels is roughly the sound, from 50 feet away, of a diesel truck going 50 mph, or a garbage disposal from three feet.

An officer can just give…

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