I'm going to call the project office for a reconstruction project near
my house when I get a chance, but just for fun I thought I'd toss this
out for opinions...
If there is a sign over a highway lane that says "Exit Only", when in
fact the lane continues beyond the Exit, can a driver legally drive in
that lane without exiting?
Here's the full story:
Last year, when they repaved the last few miles of a 2 lane highway near
my house, they decided to reduce it to 1 lane by painting white diagonal
stripes in the right lane just beyond the last "real" exit (Exit 10).
Beyond Exit 10, there are a few signaled intersections over a 2 mile
stretch before the highway ends.
They also hung Exit Only signs on the 2 signs for Exit 10 so
through-traffic had to move into the left lane before Exit 10 to avoid
driving in the now-closed right lane.
For reasons too numerous to detail in this post, they repaved the road
this summer, removing the white stripes and opening up the right hand
lane again. Suffice it to say that there were many complaints submitted
to the highway department and to the town about the new traffic pattern
and the closing of the right lane.
However, even though they opened the right lane, they left the Exit Only
signs on the signs for Exit 10. Those of us who live in the area know
that the lane isn't really the typical Exit Only lane where drivers
actually end up on the exit ramp. We know that the lane continues north
for a few more miles.
So, back to my question:
If drivers ignore the Exit Only sign and continue driving in the (now
open) right lane, can they be ticketed for doing that? Is an Exit Only
sign something that has to be obeyed, like a stop sign, or is it just an
"informational" sign as a warning to drivers?
I have to admit that in all my years of driving I've never seen an Exit
Only sign where an open lane actually continued beyond the Exit so I
think we're in uncharted territory here.