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Reader questions ‘carpet-like material’ at fishhook
Dear Street Smarts, Q: What is the carpet-like grey/black material as you exit the fishhook onto Highway 17? It has been there for at least six years, not very attractive and probably a hazard if someone were to pull over there. Take care, Paul Geerlings, via email A: That “carpet-like material” you see are the remnants of a pilot project involving commercially available weed control products, said Donna Carter, Caltrans spokeswoman. About seven years ago, Caltrans installed the materials along the freeway median north of the Branciforte Avenue overcrossing and the shoulders of the fishhook in an attempt to reduce the need for spraying herbicides, as well as prevent the spread of the iceplant into the paved drainage ditch, she said. Keeping the drains clear was critical during winter storms, she added. The material does not pose a danger to motorists; however, when it gets to the point of no repair, it will be removed, Carter said. Rule of the week All motorists must follow the “Basic Speed Law,” also known as the safe speed for travel in certain conditions. For example, a speeding ticket can be issued to a motorist who is driving 45 mph in the rain even though the area is posted at 50 mph. While the motorist is traveling slower than the posted maximum speed limit, an officer could determine that the motorist was going too fast for the wet conditions.