WOODBRIDGE, Va., July 5, 2005
(CBS) It's quitting time in Washington D.C. and
commuters are lining up to catch a ride home with a
As CBS News Correspondent Sharyl Attkisson reports,
it's called "slugging." Think of it as
organized hitchhiking or anonymous carpooling where
you never have to drive, and it's one heck of a way to
beat the high cost of fuel – up to $5,000 a year.
Domingo Gonzales is an old slugging pro. He's been
doing it for 16 years.
It's a marriage of convenience.
By hooking up, both driver and slug get home quicker.
Three in a car let's passengers ride in faster High
Occupancy Vehicle lanes.
But there are strict rules of slugging etiquette,
which you can find on a Web site: Don't talk. Don't
offer money or gifts. No smoking. No eating. And slugs
don't touch the radio or air conditioning.
Pam Knapp has been slugging for six years now, and it
begs the question: As a woman does it make her nervous
picking up two strange men?
"Well, I thought about that and my husband even
mentioned that he didn't like me picking up strange
men, but I've never felt uncomfortable ever," she
A stolen wallet is her only bad experience.
"Here, a woman can totally pick up two strangers,
and, you know, everybody pretty much is 99.9 percent
officer workers," says Gonzales.
Attkisson asks Knapp, "Wasn't Ted Bundy an office
Knapp laughs as those worries melt away as riders blow
by bumper-to-bumper gridlock. A half-hour later they
arrive safely at a commuter lot close to home where
the slugging journey began this morning.
Gonzales didn't spend a penny on gas or put a mile on
his own car. He may be a slug, but he knows it's the
other commuters doing the gas-guzzling crawl in the