Here at our Phoenix personal injury law office, we see car accidents resulting from congestion and traffic occurring more frequently in part, due to the density of vehicles on our freeways. Now the Arizona Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Division has created another path to freedom in the HOV lane on the highway.
On May 20, 2014, ADOT announced an opportunity for specific hybrid vehicle owners to obtain one of the “Clean Air–Blue Skies” Energy Efficient license plates. If you own and drive one of the following plug-in hybrid electric vehicles from specific model years: Chevrolet Volt (2011-2014), Fisker Automotive Karma (2012), Ford C-MAX Energi (2013-2014), Ford Fusion Energi (2013-2014), Honda Accord Plug-in Hybrid (2014), Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid (2012-2014), BMW i3 Range Extender (2014), Cadillac ELR (2014) and the Porsche Panamera S E Hybrid (2014), you may complete the online Energy Efficient plate application process located only on ServiceArizona.com and submit a payment of $8 (initial application fee) plus postage and handling. Plates will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.
The Clean Air–Blue Skies plates are part of a federal- and state-approved program encouraging the use of low-emission vehicles to improve the air quality in metropolitan areas. The federal program, which began in 2007 as a pilot, is designed to test the impact of allowing 10,000 hybrid vehicles to have access to the HOV lanes during peak travel times. As announced on May 20th, Arizona will allow low-emission vehicles that do not meet the established occupancy requirements to use high-occupancy vehicle lanes until September 30, 2017.
The Energy Efficient plates will not be distributed at Motor Vehicle Division or Authorized Third-Party offices. The completed application form must be mailed to: Arizona Department of Transportation, Motor Vehicle Division-Special Plates Unit; P.O. Box 2100-Mail Drop 801Z; Phoenix 85001-2100. Drivers should keep in mind that this is a federal- and state-approved program that could be changed or ended at any time.
For more information on the Energy Efficient Plate Program, application process and qualifying vehicles, please visit the ADOT Motor Vehicle Division website at azdot.gov/mvd.
Jay Ciulla is a Phoenix personal injury attorney who represents people involved in car accident cases.