ATLANTA — It's a hot route during rush hour. The high occupancy vehicles have been a resource for Atlanta drivers since 1994, meant to cut down traffic and air pollution, plus add a faster ride for those who carpool.

But Reddit commuters are calling out solo drivers riding in the HOV lane:  

r/Atlanta: Subreddit for all things in and about Atlanta, Georgia

So what's the deal with enforcement? 

The Department of Public Safety is in charge of enforcing HOV lanes and authorized to stop violators and issue tickets. A spokesperson told 11Alive's Verify team that officers in the Motor Carrier Compliance Division monitor the HOV lanes for violations, but tickets can also be issued by any officers working HOV lanes within their city limits.

While Peachpass and Xpress are checked by officers plus cameras, the spokesperspon said HOV lanes are monitored visually:

"While the High Occupancy Vehicle (H.O.V.) lanes aren’t monitored electronically, they are monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week, by state and local law enforcement. It’s important to understand the law governing the use of the lanes.”

According to an Open Records request, the Department of Public Safety issued 5,130 tickets in 2017 and 4,323 in 2018. 

The following are allowed in the HOV lane: 

  • Vehicles with two or more (living and not pre-infant) persons.
  • Emergency Vehicles (Law Enforcement, Fire, Emergency Medical)
  • Motorcycles
  • Buses
  • Alternative Fuel vehicles properly licensed with an AF license plate

Violating the HOV lane law can result in a fine between $75 and $150 dollars depending on previous violations. 

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