From this week’s mailbag, reader questions about the proper way of passing slow traffic in the center lane, the purpose of digital speed radar signs and why Rohnert Park is missing a few street signs.
Question: I’m driving a passenger car southbound on 101 between Healdsburg and Windsor. There are three lanes. The right lane, the center lane and the diamond lane. Traffic would probably be considered light. The right lane has the most traffic when I come upon a slow moving vehicle in the center lane.
I’m not sure precisely what time of day it is since that would require looking at my cell phone for the time, thus risking a ticket, but traffic in the diamond lane is much lighter than traffic in the right lane. Should I pass the slow moving vehicle in front of me on the right?
I learned that you do not pass on the right if there is a better option. But passing on the left might get me a ticket. So do I pass on the right, which is wrong, or risk a ticket and pass on the left, which is right? — Jeffrey S. Boyd
Answer: CHP Office Jon Sloat provides this one. There is no law stating that a driver cannot pass on the right as long as it is done safely. That would be the legal thing to do in this situation.
Digital speed signs
Question: Re: digital speed radar signs – what is the system for determining the location to place these? Is it complaints of speeding cars, or is it somewhat more random? I see them in spots sometimes that seem somewhat useless. – Rexfactor
Answer: This one comes from Officer Mike Numainville of Santa Rosa Police Department’s Traffic Division. Santa Rosa’s Traffic Engineering office determines the location of the Digital Speed Radar Signs based on crash statistics, roadway design, citations and neighborhood complaints. As you can imagine the signs are not inexpensive, so there are not a lot of them around.
Rohnert Park signs are on their way
Question: Don’t get me started about the lack of signs telling visitors how to get onto 101 in various areas of Santa Rosa (I feel sorry for anyone who visits or moves to this area) — but, for the life of me, I cannot understand why there are no street signs at the intersection of Golf Course Drive and Roberts Lake Drive in Rohnert Park (let alone a sign indicating that Roberts Lake Drive will take you to Santa Rosa Avenue). — Mark
Answer: Rohnert Park has had lots of road projects in recent months, and street signs are among the last things to add. Dianna Delgy of the city’s Development Services office said there are no plans to install a sign that says Roberts Lake Road leads to Santa Rosa Avenue, but mast arm mounted street signs are being installed at the following intersections: Roberts Lake Road and Golf Course Drive; Golf Course Drive and Commerce; Golf Course Drive and US 101 SB ramps; Commerce Blvd and US 101 NB ramps.