Here are the rules for using the express lanes: Roadshow

Q: I drive a Tesla. Do I need to pay a toll on the express lane with 3+ requirement when we have two people in the car? How many people to set on the FasTrak Flex toll tag?

Eric Chieh, Cupertino

A: Here’s the scoop. Yes, electric car drivers pay a 50 percent toll with two or fewer people in their car. When the Interstate 880 express lanes from Oakland to Milpitas open at 5 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 2, the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority will adjust the tolling rules for Highway 237 to match those on 880:

  • All vehicles must have a FasTrak toll tag to use the express lanes.
  • Three-person carpools, buses, vanpools and motorcycles travel toll-free with a FasTrak Flex toll tag set to the 3+ position.
  • Two-person carpools with a FasTrak Flex toll tag set to the 2+ position pay half-price tolls.
  • Solo drivers of eligible clean-air vehicles and two-person carpools in clean-air vehicles pay half-price tolls with a FasTrak tag. Eligible CAVs are those with red, purple or orange decals.
  • Other solo drivers pay the full toll to use the express lanes with either a standard FasTrak tag or a FasTrak Flex tag set to the 1 position.
  • There are six toll zones along southbound I-880 from Hegenberger Road in Oakland to Dixon Landing Road near the Fremont/Milpitas border and five toll zones northbound from Dixon Landing to Lewelling Boulevard in San Lorenzo.

Enjoy the ride.

Q: Since our highways are created and maintained almost exclusively with tax dollars, it is morally inexcusable, like the poll tax, to charge for their use. 

Andrew Getz, Berkeley

A: I’m guessing you won’t enjoy riding on 880.

Q: Bumpy Danville Boulevard needs work. Is anything planned?

Donna Kass, Walnut Creek

A: Yes. Contra Costa County will be performing crack seal operations on Danville Boulevard from Rudgear Road to El Portal. The work will be done during the day. It begins next week and goes through Oct. 1.

Q: I donated my old vehicle to Kars4Kids, but I still have both license plates. Do I have to return them to the DMV, or is it  OK to discard them and cut in pieces when I do?

Duc Vu. Fremont

A: Return them to a nearby DMV office and be sure to complete a notice of release of liability.

Q: How do I get a new license plate? My front plate is 15 years old and a sorry sight to behold. The white paint has rubbed off, bugged off, blown off and worn off. The numbers are clear, but the plate makes my vehicle look a bit tattered. To put a new plate on would bring joy to my soul and a song to my heart.

Orla Loper

A: Sing away. Go to the DMV website to request duplicate or substitute plates.

Join Gary Richards for an hourlong chat noon Wednesday at Look for Gary Richards at or contact him at or 408-920-5335.

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Author: Gary Richards