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On the Trans Blog
For MassDOT RMV Lottery Winners, the Prize is the Number

Registrar Rachel Kaprielian announced the winners of MassDOT’s license plate lottery following a live drawing at the Larz Anderson Auto Museum in Brookline that attracted more than 100 people in the running for 177 low number registrations, including R12, 2002 and 55A.

With the museum’s antique vehicles serving as a backdrop, Registrar Kaprielian awarded the plates by spinning a drum and drawing names from among this year’s record 8,585 applicants.

Winners of the 2010 lottery will have until December 31, 2010 to claim their plates and swap them with their current registration.

The winners list is online here, and the RMV will notify all winners by mail with instructions on how they can claim the winning plates.

MassDOT Aeronautics: Runway Repairs

MassDOT's Aeronautics Division during summer 2010 performed much needed statewide crack repair and pavement marking projects for 11 of the Commonwealth’s privately-owned/public-use airports. Runway repairs are shown underway at Great Barrington, above.

The project assists privately-owned/public-use airports in maintaining the safety and serviceability of their paved runways.

The project included the following airports: Falmouth, Great Barrington, Hanson-Cranland, Hopedale-Draper Industrial Park, Northampton, Plum-Island/Newburyport, Spencer Airport, Sterling, Stow-Minuteman Air Field, Tanner-Hiller Airport and new pavement markings only at Marlboro Airport. The $1 million project was funded through MassDOT's Airport Safety and Maintenance Program.

Weekend Farmers Markets

MassDOT's annual Farmer's Market Program continues through fall 2010.

This weekend's Farmers Markets include:

  • Lee East on Friday, Saturday & Sunday from 9:30 PM - 5:30 PM.
  • Charlton West on Friday, Saturday & Sunday 9 AM - 4 PM.
  • Charlton East on Friday, Saturday & Sunday from 9 AM - 4 PM.
  • Framingham on Friday, Saturday & Sunday from 10 AM - 4 PM.

Local farmers or customers who want more information are asked to contact program coordinator Dave Fenton at dave.fenton@state.ma.us or 413-572-3171.

The Road to Reform

Labor Day Weekend Traffic, Transit Update

Massachusetts has among the safest roads in the nation, and safe travel is a top priority for MassDOT. In order to encourage a safe ride and reduce congestion during the upcoming Labor Day holiday weekend, MassDOT will suspend all road and bridge construction on major roadways from Noon Friday, September 3 through start of normal business on Tuesday, September 7.

Before you travel, check out MassDOT statewide live traffic cameras.

As a reminder given recent forecasts, the annually updated Cape Cod Emergency Traffic Plan addresses traffic issues in the event of a hurricane, particularly during peak tourist season. The Plan has been developed by federal, state and local partners, including the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, State Police, National Guard, MassDOT, and others. The Plan is available on the link above.

Labor Day traffic on I-90 is heaviest Thursday and Friday westbound and Monday afternoon-evening eastbound. Cape Cod-bound traffic is heaviest early Friday afternoon.

Compliments of McDonalds, Burger King, and Gulf, free coffee will be served at the 18 service plazas on Monday night into Tuesday morning, from 10:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. Free coffee locations include the 11 service plazas along I-90 plus the following:

  • Rte 3, Plymouth
  • Rte 128, Beverly
  • Rte128/I-95, Lexington and Newton
  • Rte 24, north and southbound service plaza's
  • Rte 6, Barnstable, 10:00pm to 1:00am only

The MBTA service schedule for Labor Day, Monday, September 6, follows:

  • All subway trains, streetcars, buses, trackless trolleys, and commuter rail trains will run on a Sunday schedule.
  • The Long Wharf to Charlestown Navy Yard water shuttle will operate on a Sunday schedule.
  • The Quincy commuter boat to Long Wharf and Logan Airport will operate on a Saturday schedule on Sunday, September 5; and on a Sunday schedule Labor Day.
  • The Hingham and Hull commuter boat services will not operate.
  • THE RIDE will run on a Sunday Schedule.

Governor Patrick Highlights Route 2 Improvements

As part of the Patrick-Murray Administration's historic Massachusetts Works program to promote job growth and long-term economic recovery, Governor Deval Patrick this week joined with Congressman Olver and local leaders in the Town of Orange to highlight ongoing road and bridge improvement projects totaling $27 million along Route 2 in Orange, Erving, Gill, Athol, Wendell, and Phillipston.

The $11.7 million Route 2 project in Orange is reconstructing and making safety improvements along 5 miles of Route 2, including rehabilitating and widening the Route 2 Bridge over Route 122. The project is funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

The Patrick-Murray Administration's MassDOT is widening the shoulder, extending the existing climbing lanes, and improving the acceleration and deceleration lanes and the alignments at various on/off ramps. In addition, the Route 2 Bridge over Route 122 will be widened and the superstructure replaced to accommodate the proposed widened climbing lane.

The Route 2 project in Orange, scheduled for completion in 2012, is among six projects in MassDOT's Route 2 Safety Improvement Initiative. For several years, MassDOT has partnered with the Route 2 Task force to implement improvements along the entire corridor, working from a regional perspective to reach consensus among the communities about how the corridor should look as a whole.

Other projects include:

  • $2.5M reconstruction of Route 2 in Erving from River Road to Old Route 2.
  • $1.5M construction of a new bridge carrying Route 2 over Lake Rohunta from Athol to Orange.
  • $2.9M ARRA project for the resurfacing of Route 2 and other improvements in Erving, Gill, Orange, and Wendell.
  • $5.3M reconstruction of two Route 2 bridges in Erving over Route 63 and the New England Central Railroad.
  • The innovative $3.1M design/build ABP bridge replacement on Route 2 over Route 2A in Phillipston.

The statewide road and bridge program combined with the eight-year, $3 billion Accelerated Bridge Program and federal stimulus funds have more than doubled the Commonwealth's investment in roads and bridges from $515 million in FY2007 to a projected $1.085 in FY2010.

The combined road and bridge construction program will support more than 10,000 jobs on 385 separate projects across the Commonwealth.

MassDOT Reminder: Safe Driving Law

Governor Deval Patrick in July signed legislation that bans text-messaging for all Massachusetts drivers, prohibits junior operators from using cell phones and institutes new license renewal procedures for mature drivers, among other provisions. The Safe Driving Law becomes effective in Massachusetts on September 30, 2010. The law creates a series of new violations, which the RMV Division, MassDOT IT staff and the Merit Rating Board are working to program and implement.

These new violations include:
1. Use of a Mobile Phone by a Junior Operator- Civil Offense- No insurance surcharge (Reporting an emergency is the only exception. Drivers are encouraged to pull over and stop the vehicle to report the emergency.)

  • 1st offense-$100 assessment 60-day license suspension and attitudinal course
  • 2nd offense-$250 assessment 180-day suspension
  • 3rd or subsequent offense-$500 assessment 1-year suspension
  • $100 reinstatement fee for any suspension
  • Knowledge and road test required for reinstatement

2. Use of a Mobile Phone by a Public Transport Motor Vehicle Operator- Civil Offense-No insurance surcharge

  • $500 assessment each offense

3. Use of a Mobile Phone by a Public Transport Non-Motor Vehicle Operator- Civil Offense-No insurance surcharge (MBTA Trolley)

  • $500 assessment each offense

4. Improper Use of a Mobile Phone by Operators 18 and Over- Civil Offense-No insurance surcharge (One hand must be on the steering wheel at all times and no use of device can interfere with driving)

  • 1st offense-$35 assessment
  • 2nd offense in 12 months-$75 assessment
  • 3rd offense in 12 months-$150 assessment

5. Sending/Reading Text Messages- Civil Offense-No insurance surcharge (Operators cannot use any mobile electronic device to write, send, or read an electronic message including text messages, emails, instant messages or accessing the internet while operating a vehicle. Mobile electronic device includes mobile telephone, text messaging device, paging device, PDA, laptop computer, electronic equipment capable of playing video games or video disks or can take/transmit digital photographs or can receive a television broadcast. Mobile Device does not include any equipment permanently or temporarily installed to provide navigation, emergency assistance or rear seat video entertainment. Law applies even if the vehicle is stopped in traffic.)

  • 1st offense-$100 assessment
  • 2nd offense-$250 assessment
  • 3rd or subsequent offense-$500 assessment

6. Negligent Operation & Injury from Mobile Phone Use- Criminal Offense- Insurance surcharge

JOL Suspensions

  • 1st offense-180-day suspension
  • 2nd or subsequent offense within 3 years-1 year suspension
  • $100 reinstatement fee
Over-18 suspensions
  • 1st offense-60-day suspension
  • 2nd or subsequent offense within 3 years-1 year suspension
  • $100 reinstatement fee

Elder Driving Provisions

License applicants, either for initial licensure in Massachusetts or license renewal, age 75 and older must conduct the transaction in a RMV office. Use of the Internet for license renewals will no longer be allowed for these applicants. All applicants, regardless of age, that obtain or renew a license in a branch office are required to undergo a vision test or provide a vision screening certificate to complete the transaction.

MassDOT Board September Public Meeting

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation Board of Directors will hold its next public business meeting on Tuesday, September 7, 3:00pm, in the MBTA Board Room, Suite 3910, State Transportation Building, Boston. The MBTA Board will meet first at 1pm, followed by the MassDOT Board. All meetings are open to the public.

The meeting schedule is available on the MassDOT website.