FALLS CHURCH, Va. — Two Northern Virginia women profiled on WTOP have come together to launch a new website to protest the fines and penalties on the Express Lanes. In some cases, the fines can be thousands of dollars.
Toni Cooley and Lisa Marie Comras launched Drivers4Change.org because they want a conversation to begin on how to restore fairness to the process.
“Basically what they did is they took the HOV law and copied it over to the HOT (high occupancy toll) Lanes statute. But when you commit an HOV violation, a trooper pulls you over and writes you a ticket. You know you’ve committed a violation and if you do it again, the fines go up. You don’t know that on the HOT Lanes,” says Cooley.
She points out that since there are neither red light indicators, nor toll booths, there is no notice given on the roadway about a violation compared to the HOV system. She suggests lawmakers shouldn’t have copied and pasted the language over, but rather written new language for the realities of a new roadway.
Del. David Albo, who wrote the original law, tells WTOP that he never envisioned a toll road without toll booths when the HOT Lane laws were written. He thought there would be toll booths or red light indicators like the Dulles Toll Road.