Originally Published: June 28, 2017 6 a.m.
Time to do a reminder on ADOT’s recommended “zipper” system for lane closures. The rule is for all traffic to stay in their lane down to the actual closure and then ‘zipper’ (every other vehicle) into the open lane.
This reminder is needed because a recent “Right Lane Closed Ahead” occurred on Highway 69 coming down from Prescott Lakes Parkway. Many vehicles were moving into the left lane too early and what would have been a quarter of a mile back up was half of a mile. By using the “zipper” method you are getting more use out of the available roadway and then a more equitable means of merging can occur. And of course, there was a self-appointed ‘road sheriff’ driving down the middle of two lanes, blocking both lanes, to prevent those who were trying to use the “zipper” from doing so. And ironically the closed lane was the “Right Turn Only” lane so it was the ‘sheriffs’ who caused the entire back-up by blocking both through lanes.