HR Strange But True!
January 19, 2006

Does a pregnant woman count as one or two people for the purposes of a carpool lane? A judge in Phoenix, Arizona recently answered that question.

Candace Dickinson, who was nine months pregnant at the time, was driving in the high occupancy vehicle lane of Interstate 10 during a morning commute when a police officer stopped her and issued a citation, the Ahwatukee Foothills News reports.

Commuters must have at least two occupants to drive in the high occupancy vehicle lane.

"I asked her how many occupants she had, and she said two, pointing to her obvious pregnancy," Phoenix police Sgt. Dave Norton told Municipal Judge Dennis Freeman.

In contesting the citation, Dickinson argued that an unborn child should count as a person for the purposes of a carpool lane, but Freeman rejected her argument, the newspaper notes.

"It is my decision, opinion, that the definition of a person is a person who occupies a separate and distinct space in the vehicle," Freeman said before fining Dickinson $385.

Norton tells the newspaper that if pregnant women were to count as two people for the carpool lane, police officers would have to carry around pregnancy tests.

"And I don't think you want us to do that," Norton said.

Source: Ahwatukee Foothills News

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