Q The Texas study that recently concluded that texting hands-free is as dangerous as texting on a handheld cellphone is no surprise to me. Texting is texting and dangerous as hell. What were state officials thinking when they approved this loophole last year?

Bob Romero

A The loophole could close. California Assemblyman Jim Frazier, D-Oakley, has introduced AB 313, which would ban hands-free texting while driving. It was approved by the California Assembly Transportation Committee recently and is scheduled to be heard in the Assembly Appropriations Committee on Wednesday. Stay tuned.

Q Is it true that there is a proposal to extend the carpool sticker end date? If so, does it sound like it will pass?

Matt Pawlik

San Jose

A It's true, and I think the chances are excellent that the Assembly will go along with the idea. The Senate voted 34-0 last week to extend the sticker program, which allows solo drivers in plug-in hybrids, electric vehicles or those running on compressed natural gas to use the carpool lanes.

The bill, SB 286, is authored by Senator Leland Yee, D-San Francisco. The current sticker program is set to expire in 2015.

Q I drive Highway 17 and thus am frequently exposed to the hazards of motorcycle lane-splitting. Frequently, and by that I mean more often than not, I see the "rice rockets" weaving in and out at speeds of 50 to 60 mph. I've never understood the need for this, as it can't save enough time to justify the risk. Hurry up and split between two cars at a high rate of speed and then ride the bumper as you look for the slightest opportunity to split again. Seems like a huge risk to me, but since it's legal it must be safe!

Jim Northcutt

Santa Cruz

A It's not legal at the speeds you cite. Earlier this year the CHP said lane-splitting is legal only when a motorcyclist is going no more than 10 mph faster than the speed of traffic and when highway speeds are around 30 mph. May is National Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month and a good time to remind motorcyclists and drivers to watch out for each other.

Q The west side of Norwalk Drive fronting Interstate 280 in San Jose has "No Stopping at any Time" signs posted the entire length of the street. But recently the signs on the curved section from the entrance to the shopping mall parking lot for about 500 feet along Norwalk have been removed, with the result that people park in this section.

Since many people come around the curve at a speed higher than the posted limit, the parked cars cause a substantial risk of head-on collision with drivers attempting to avoid cars parked cars on the west side of the street.

Can we please have the "No Stopping" signs restored as soon as possible?

Keith Graham

San Jose

A Signs started to disappear about seven months ago. City officials think it's the work of vandals. The signs will be replaced soon.

Q I have come to the conclusion that bad, inconsiderate, texting, cellphone-talking, reckless drivers do not read your column.

Mike Dooley

San Jose

A Why is that?

Q If they read your column, they would not be bad, texting, inconsiderate, cellphone-talking, reckless drivers.

Mike Dooley

A Makes perfect sense to me.

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