Rockland Responds: The New York State Thruway Authority Clarifies What Vehicles Can Drive in the Bus Lane
I have a question regarding the Tappan Zee Bridge. The overhead gantry usually indicates "bus only" over the bus lane. When other lanes are closed for construction or an accident, the "bus only" changes to a green arrow indicating an open lane. But is the lane indicator meant to tell buses that the lane is open, or can drivers use that as a lane if it's a green arrow?
The bus lanes on the bridge never change to allow traffic, so there is no change to a green arrow for maintenance. The only time we would make a change would be for an extreme emergency that requires multiple lane closures, which is very rare.
The bus lane, therefore, always reads "buses only," and there is no green arrow, and the bus lane is for buses. There are dedicated bus lanes on each span. The bus lane is located on the right side of the road, between the general travel lanes and the outside shoulder. Only vehicles with seating for 15 or more passengers are permitted to use the bus lanes. These include Hudson Link buses, charter buses, school buses, and other regional public transit buses. New York State Police are responsible for enforcing the proper use of the bus lane on the bridge. The first violation will carry a fine of $150, and the penalty would escalate for any repeat violations within an 18-month period.
New York State Thruway Spokesperson
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