DOT INSTALLS A TRAFFIC LIGHT
Part of the reason for this three-decade-long delay appears to be a built-in failure in DOT record- keeping. As Helsel's May 4 Advance story revealed, the department keeps count only of crashes that cause more than $1,000 in damage. Using that standard, only four accidents have been recorded as having occurred in that location over the past five years. This is palpable nonsense.
It's not as though DOT didn't know. The sole stop sign, at Woodstock Avenue, was reinforced in 1977--1977!--with a pair of flashing red lights. "More recently," according to Helsel's report, "a yellow caution flasher was installed to warn drivers on Castleton Avenue. In 2002," the report continues, "metal guardrails were installed at the corners, where cars frequently ran up on lawns."
Thirty years of stopgap improvements–– motivated, as usual, by a policy priority to keep traffic moving, not keep people safe--have been a miserable failure. And DOT's grudging concession to install a traffic light that should have been installed three decades ago proves it.
DOT HAS TO START TELLING THE TRUTH
DOT's Happy Motoring policies--policies that advantage cars and drivers over all others--are becoming less and less tenable as we contemplate a future of expanding population and limited resources.
For starters, let's demand a true accounting of the real numbers of collisions that occur, whatever the cost of their associated damages may be. By understating this problem, DOT distorts the facts, twisting reality to suit its policies, rather than adjusting policies to deal with the reality of a crowded world in which streets and roadways are shared space that belong to all citizens equally.
THE NEIGHBOR WHO DOESN'T LIVE HERE
BUT QUALIFIES AS ONE ANYWAY
Ed's our UPS guy. I see his smiling face more often than I see the faces of people who live only a few houses away. So by me, Ed qualifies as a neighbor on that basis alone.
Ed didn't hesitate to have his picture taken for this blog, but he didn't want his last name used. He feared that revealing it might somehow add new multitudes to his existing horde of fans.
Yeah, Ed's a popular guy around here. He's smart and strong and dedicated. He also exposes those shapely calves to the elements a full 12 months of the year.
Though Ed has the misfortune to live not in St. George but somewhere in New Jersey, I see him all over the neighborhood, all the time. We wave. It's the kind of small-town thing big-city neighborhoods aren't known for.
Tired of UPS guys who hand you a package, give you something to sign, then walk away? Maybe it's time to move to St. George.