Metro Says Lingering Concerns Over Ice Prompted Closure Of HOV Lanes During Morning Commute

Metro is defending its decision to shut down Houston's HOV lanes during this morning's commute. Officials were worried about park-and-ride buses getting stuck on icy ramps.

Metro Interim CEO Tom Lambert says crews checked out the HOV and HOT lanes around 3:00 this morning. Staff was told that if there were any unsafe conditions, the lanes would stay closed. 

“When we found icing conditions on the ramps leading from the park-and-ride lots to the HOV-HOT lanes, and then ice along different locations along the corridor, the decision was made not to open the lanes this morning.”

Even though the roads were ice-free by the start of the morning commute Lambert says they didn’t want to take a chance, considering temperatures were still below freezing in some locations.

“As we saw last Friday, we saw buses unfortunately that got on ramps that were iced down, that were not safe positions for our employees to be in or our customers to be in.”

Metro operates close to 90 miles of HOV lanes, and those lanes carry about 33,000 vehicles a day. 

The lanes are open for the commute this afternoon. 


Gail Delaughter

Gail Delaughter

Transportation Reporter

From early-morning interviews with commuters to walks through muddy construction sites, Gail covers all aspects of getting around Houston. That includes walking, driving, cycling, taking the bus, and occasionally flying. Before she became transportation reporter in 2011, Gail hosted weekend programs for Houston Public Media. She's also covered courts in...

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