"Road zombies." They're scary. They're out there.
State traffic safety officials have come up with that name for what they consider some of the most dangerous drivers on the road people who talk on cellphones or text behind the wheel.
A funny television ad will begin airing this week showing an officer pulling over a zombie driver.
Officials have also posted a video on YouTube, showing seemingly brainless and aimless zombies wandering the streets of cities around the state.
The action climaxes on Sacramento's Tower Bridge as zombies lurch forward on attack. The link is at: http://bit.ly/HjUUp1.
"You're using about one-third less of your brain," Chris Murphy, head of the state Office of Traffic Safety, said of those who talk on a cellphone or text while driving. "Everybody thinks they can multitask, but really, they don't. It just takes one mistake, one time."
California Highway Patrol officials say they will be looking for zombies in April including several days of focused traffic operations during National Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
Airport parking increase
Starting Saturday, the most affordable parking lot at Sacramento International Airport will cost slightly more. The daily rate at the airport's "economy" lot goes from $9 to $10.
The airport raised rates at other lots in October after opening the new terminal, which is partially financed by parking revenue.
The economy lot is still considerably cheaper than the garage.
But the airport website offers this important warning for peak morning and night hours: "Because airport shuttles make multiple stops, it can take as long as 45 minutes to reach the terminal."
Adopt Highway 99
Feel like nurturing your local highway?
Caltrans says two area road sections are up for adoption by groups willing to do roadside cleanup as part of the state Adopt-A-Highway program.
One is Highway 99 from Elverta Road to the Sacramento/Sutter county line. The other is Interstate 5 from County Road 99 to Cache Creek Bridge in Yolo County.
The chores: removing litter, planting trees or wildflowers, removing graffiti and controlling weeds.
Groups can do the work themselves, or hire a maintenance provider. Either way, they get their name on a plaque. Call (530) 741-4002.
Niello the transit fan?
Last week, at Sacramento Regional Transit's annual breakfast, none other than Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce President Roger Niello he of the car dealership family got up to give transit a plug.
If people use public transit, that takes more cars off crowded roads, he said.
"There," he said, grinning at the audience of business leaders. "I said that!"