There may be nothing more aggravating than sitting in a long line of traffic while a vehicle with just one person inside flies by in the HOV lane. But recently, Port Moody police have been handing out a form of poetic justice to the lawbreakers.
As part of a one-hour HOV enforcement blitz on Aug. 29 along Barnet Highway, the department handed out nine violation tickets and another eight warnings. In a couple of cases, the drivers were repeat HOV offenders.
One driver had three prior fines, another had four previous tickets, while yet another had received a fine the day before from the same officer.
The Port Moody police sent out this batch of Tweets regarding enforcement: "Repeat customers this morning, incl a driver with four prev HOV tickets and a driver who received an HOV ticket yest from the same officer."
"The fine for HOV is $109 with a $25 discount if paid within 30 days - as we were reminded roadside by the well versed drivers."
Port Moody police spokesman Const. Luke van Winkel said the force is finding people breaking the HOV rules tend to be repeat offenders.
"Which is frustrating for all the people who obey the rules on a regular basis and factor in the time needed to drive their daily commute, versus trying to squeeze through the HOV lane," he said, noting most of the tickets issued on that day were also given to repeat offenders.
So far this year, the department has handed out more than 30 HOV violation tickets and written 40 warnings.
Van Winkel pointed out the numbers in 2012 are on par with last year.
With the school year underway, the police aren't done.
Van Winkel suggested there is always a huge increase in the amount of traffic during peak hours once summer vacation ends, noting the department will be taking part in extra enforcement of everything traffic related, including HOV lanes and school zones throughout the week and beyond.
Eight months into 2012, Port Moody police have handed out more than 1,100 traffic-related tickets, as well as issuing another 2,000 warnings.
That works out to an average of 13 tickets per day, for everything from speeding to drinking and driving.
Van Winkel said the number of tickets has dipped compared to 2011, but he isn't sure of the exact reason.