Monday, August 29, 2011

Stop Bars?

No I am not trying to inform anyone to go to their favorite bar less. I am speaking of the big, bold white paint stripes you find at a lot of intersections. Let me first remind people these paint markings are there to indicate where you are supposed to stop for a red light or a stop sign. This markings are placed at specific spots for a reason usually. The reason may be to prevent you from being hit by passing vehicles or by vehicles trying to turn onto the street you are sitting on. Let us not forget that these stop bars are typically located prior to crosswalks which help protecting pedestrians as well.

Once you stop at the bar you may then move forward if you need to get a better look at traffic before entering the intersection and proceeding in which ever direction you are going.

The photo I am sharing is a specific intersection not far from my house that I passed almost daily. I often am approaching this intersection on the passing street just on the other side of the brick building. A very high percentage of the times I approach, I see drivers blowing right through this stop sign and right into the path of crossing traffic.

This problem is certainly by no means specific to this location. I see this dozens time per day all over the eastern United States.

I will save the topic of actually stopping at stops signs for another post all together. For not I just wanted to focus on the stop bar specifically and why it is important to use it as an indicator of where to stop before proceeding.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Posted Speed Limits

"the final, utmost, or furthest boundary or point as to extent, amount, continuance, procedure, etc."

I thought it would be a good idea to begin with the definition of the word  "Limit" since most drivers today seem to have forgotten what it means. Now let me also state that, in an attempt to not be more hypocritical than I need to be, I do typically drive 5 mph over the posted speed limit as to not impede the traffic moving around me any more than is safe in my opinion.

Now that you know that in the above picture I would normally be driving 45 mph, let me state that I would have most drivers either flying past me in the neighboring lane or riding my rear bumper. The tailgating is another issue all together and I will get to that in a future post. I just feel that the number of motorists today that are driving 10, 15 or even more mph over the posted speed limit is completely ridiculous. I have even heard law enforcement officers indicate that they usually won't pull someone over strictly for speeding unless they are 10 mph over the posted speed limit. Well that statement alone is going to encourage most drivers to exceed the speed limit.

Another aspect of the posted speed limit is the fact that engineering studies were done to provide us with that number in ideal circumstances such as a sunny dry warm day. Does this mean people slow down when its raining, night time or when ice is possible? Some drivers do but not near enough that should.

I have lost track of the number of times I have been passed by someone going 10 to 15 mph over the posted speed limit, to crest a hill and hit their brakes because there is a law enforcement officer setup with a radar unit. I will admit the ultimate redemption for me is when I get to pass someone further down the road that flew past me that is now sitting on the shoulder receiving their speed ticket.

I will close this post by simply asking everyone to try and remember that the posted speed limit exists in an attempt to keep us safer on the roadways and get us to our destinations without injuring ourselves or others.


In my many travels from both my employment and enjoyment I witness many things that make me laugh and annoy me to the point of road rage. I created this blog for a place to share some of my experiences, opinions and misguided suggestions.

I am in the Construction/Traffic Control Industry so you may find a lot of musings dedicated to this topic as I spend time both inside and outside of those infamous orange barrel zones you all pass almost daily.

So take a moment if you will and share in the various postings that I come up with. Some of these postings will be much more thought out than others depending on when I post them. I may be posting these from home, office, hotel room or even a rest stop if I feel it needs shared while it is fresh in my mind.