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Waaaah! The Carpool Party is Over: Hybrid Yellow Stickers Lose Their Magic

Photo by billaday via Flickr
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File this under: "Waaaah!" Today marks the first day of the rest of your traffic-choked life if you are one of the 85,000 hybrid vehicle owners with that formerly "magic" set of yellow stickers that allowed you to drive solo in the carpool lane. As of July 1, those stickers aren't worth the sticky paper they were printed on: The carpool party is over.

A third of those 85k drivers live in Los Angeles, notes L.A. Now, who spoke with one driver who says those stickers would save him over an hour of commute time because he could slip into the carpool lane in his Prius. That driver, like the rest of us who are SOL as of today, is sad.

The program was slated to end on December 31, 2010, as announced last July by then-governor Arnold Schwarzenegger; the program was graciously extended another six months. This time it's actually over.

According to traffic experts, the non-stickered drivers won't really notice the 85k hybrid drivers back in their lanes. As a part of the program, "the stickered cars make up about 6% of the car-pool lane traffic," adds L.A. Now. "The yellow-stickered vehicles comprise less than 1% of all vehicles registered in the county."

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Anyone wanna carpool?