You may come across this sign for the first time this summer. Do you know it ? And do you know what you risk if you don't follow it?
This summer, many tourists and other users may be discovering a new kind of panels for the first time. Either they are present on the lower side and feature a white triangle on a blue background. Either they take the form of luminous white diamonds on a black background above certain lanes. What are they and what do we risk if we don't know them?
These signs have a meaning. The Citizen's Climate Convention proposed, in June 2020, to "generalize the development of lanes reserved for shared vehicles and public transport on motorways and expressways serving a zone with low mobility emissions".
In France, lanes reserved for carpooling and certain categories of vehicles (Crit'Air zero emission sticker) have therefore been put into service since 2020, on several axes very often used by motorists. First in September 2020 in Grenoble on the A48 motorway, then in December 2020 in Lyon on the A6 and A7 motorways.
The sign therefore indicates a carpooling lane which can only be used by the following vehicles:
Motorists who do not comply with the regulations relating to the use of the carpool lane are liable to a fine of €135. Speed cameras can control the proper use of the carpool lane. They have the ability to check the number of occupants in the vehicle traveling in the carpool lane, whether they are in the front or the back. And this, whatever the weather conditions, day or night. They can also differentiate between real people and models to avoid "false positives".
Finally, you should know that these lanes are not always permanent, they can be open during traffic jams or at certain times. If this is the case, the sign, which must be located upstream of the reserved lane and at the end, mentions the time slot concerned by carpooling.