Q The narrow shoulder for the carpool lane on Highway 101 south between Palo Alto and Mountain View is causing frequent hubcap losses. No surprise there.

But at one spot between the Rengstorff and Shoreline exits that seems fairly straight, there must be 20 or so hubcaps huddling together on the shoulder. The mystery is why so many at that one spot? Maybe one of your readers can solve the mystery!

Eve Carlson

Mountain View

A Maybe, but for a stumper like this I turn to Ray-the-Tow-Truck-Guy, who says:

"I change a lot of tires there. One time I changed 13 tires and towed four cars with multiple flats at the 85 exit in a two-hour period. It was during one of the most severe downpours I have ever been subject to.

"Due to the amount of accidents on the onramp, it is no surprise to me that there are a lot of hubcaps out there. Maybe it is due to the horrendous bump at the Rengstorff onramp."

Anyone else?

Q I don't think I have seen this reported yet, so here goes. On two recent weekends we have taken more trips than usual on Highway 85 and 101 in Mountain View for my son's soccer championship (they took second place, by the way!). As we approached the junction with 101 in a heavy rain, I was in the No. 2 lane and was distracted by a car crashing through a huge puddle on the right, so I didn't see a large pothole on the left of my lane until it shook our Ford Explorer violently.

Then I noticed something bouncing alongside us and realized it jarred the hubcap off the car. A week later I was frustrated to still see it lying on the center divide shoulder in plain site, but unreachable.

The worst and most dangerous section appears to be just south of Rengstorff, where the fault line is several feet long. I think this is the worst, judging by the center divide shoulder just past that point, where there are at least a dozen hubcaps for a few hundred yards. This one looks big enough to easily take down a motorcycle, and I am surprised it hasn't already. Can you alert Caltrans?

Ross Heitkamp

A And ...

Q Highway 101 north is deteriorating from the Moffett Boulevard offramp to Shoreline Boulevard. This area is the worst to drive through. Please help. The recent rains have made a big impact to the poor conditions in this area.

Johnny Donoho

A Your pleas have been delivered to Caltrans -- again. Hang in there, and I hope your hubcaps stay on. This entire stretch will be repaved when construction ends next summer.

Q Westbound Murphy Avenue and eastbound Brokaw Road before I-880 used to be a smooth ride. But now it will be bumper to bumper from Lundy all the way to I-880 in the morning commute every day, and there is no accident at all, no backup from I-880. Something wrong with the synchronization of the traffic lights?

Alex Li

A It should be a tad better. There were problems with the signal synchronization here -- caused by vandalism in one area -- but temporary improvements were just completed. However, the city signals are not yet synchronized with Caltrans' signals at 880, and conditions will likely not vastly improve until they are.

Q Why did they cut bumps into Highway 1 on both sides of the overpass at Exit 404 in Sand City? This was done about two months ago, and no other work has taken place since. Why would they do this? It's a pretty harsh bump on both sides and in both directions. I'm also wondering how long it will be until this is fixed? There are no signs to warn drivers, so no one slows down. This has got to be bad for our cars.

The only thing I can think of is the contractor has a buddy or family member that owns a tire store nearby. Help please!

John Rowe

Marina

A Caltrans dug out the old asphalt to prepare to overlay the highway, but it's been too cold at night to finish the job. The state will put up some advance warning signs for the upcoming bump in the meantime. Otherwise, hang tough until the weather warms.

Go to Roadshow's expanded online presence at www.mercurynews.com/mr-roadshow and look for rules of the road, construction updates and favorite stories. Look for Gary Richards at Facebook.com/mr.roadshow or contact him at mrroadshow@mercurynews.com or 408-920-5335.