Senate OKs ramp meters, ferry ads

Posted July 1, 2014

The North Carolina Department of Transportation is looking into the installation of ramp meters, which are signals along interstate ramps that control merging traffic.

— State senators gave unanimous approval Tuesday to an omnibus bill authorizing interstate ramp meters, ads on ferries and sponsorships of Department of Transportation operations.

The measure, House Bill 1025, would allow the DOT to sell ad space and even naming rights on ferries and at ferry terminals and sponsorships of rest stops and other DOT facilities or projects to raise revenue for ferries and maintenance work, respectively.

It also directs the DOT to move forward with ramp meters – simple stoplights installed on high-volume on-ramps that are used to space traffic flowing onto interstates at rush hour.  

The DOT already had the authority to install ramp meters, but under current law, running a red light on a meter would have been treated the same as running a regular red light, subject to a ticket and insurance points. Anticipating a public outcry, the agency postponed use of the meters.

House Bill 1025 clarifies that running a ramp meter is an infraction, which doesn't carry points or an insurance surcharge.

A provision in the House version allowing drivers to renew their licenses for four years by phone, email or online was removed from the Senate version of the bill. That provision has already passed the House in another measure.   

The bill now goes back to the House for a final vote on the Senate's changes.


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  • Kenny Dunn Jul 1, 2014
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    Does anyone really want to get on the Malaysian Airlines Ferry?

  • iopsyc Jul 1, 2014

    One ticket for the Ocra-Coca-Cola ferry please.

  • Justin Case Jul 1, 2014
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    Ramp signals Will not improve anything. It will not make people actually accelerate up to highway speed nor will they make other drivers merge properly. It'll just be another control mechanism by the government and a source of traffic fine revenue. The money they spend on this could be spent on driver educational ads and PSA's. SMH

  • Justin Case Jul 1, 2014
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    Seriously, why is there no driver education efforts AFTER drivers ed. when you're 16? That might be money better spent!

  • jwpnc Jul 1, 2014

    They have the ramp signals in CA and they work rather well! I have gone out there on business a few times and I found them to be a good thing.

  • farm Jul 1, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Hmm. They have something similar in San Francisco that works better than having nothing.

  • sinenomine Jul 1, 2014

    PAUSE TO CONSIDER has hit the nail on the head in wondering why driver education should be considered to be over when you get your first license. It is my understanding that additional education is available particularly for older drivers. I don't know where you sign up but would assume maybe the AARP or your insurance company might be a good place to start.

  • rushbot Jul 1, 2014

    i have driven on these things before and it is a nightmare.....if the ga would tax fuel and charge impact fees for all the new houses and multi-family homes being built, maybe we could get enough new schools and roads built........

  • justafella Jul 1, 2014

    It would be nice to renew my Drivers License online, or by phone, hate going to the office.

  • Shawn Kennedy Jul 1, 2014
    user avatar

    People do not know how to merge correctly now. Half the time I see people trying to merge on I-40 driving well under 65 or 70 while people on 40 are driving at least at these speeds. So now your going to make them leave on the ramp at a dead stop and see if they can merge without getting ran over ? I can see this now cars will be backed up for sure in rush hour trafic. This will only create a worse traffic jam and delay not to mention a waste of our tax money that we could use better else where. Its just in another intrusion by big brother trying to tell us how to drive etc.