To the Editor:
This senior senior’s vision hovers on the precipice of 20-50. What once were clearly visible obstructions are now more difficult to detect.
Could we do without raised curbs on intersection medians? At night, with snow, they cause accidents when run over. Also curbs – if ditches are available, why curbs? Pulling off highways with curbs leaves cars too close to traffic.
Stop signs litter our rural roads. There are a significant number of intersections where rises can obscure a car at legal speeds until the last minute. A stop sign is needed. However, a good majority could be replaced with yields. Unless corn obscures vision, one usually can see for miles each way approaching an intersection. “Crying wolf” encourages treating stop signs as yields, with the inevitable greater accident risk. How about a yield at Lisbon Road heading north at Route 52?
The ticketing of drivers for 6 mph over the speed limit is a speed trap for revenue. Checking continuously for speed limit signs and then your dashboard, both hard to see at times, can also cause distraction fender-benders. Route 47 through Morris and Yorkville changes speeds from 55 to 45 to 35 several times. How far past the sign must you have slowed 5 mph? Some years back, I was stuck in traffic and removed my seat belt to get to a handkerchief. Result: a ticket.
Bicyclists: exhausted, unseeing – 10-15 mph 3 feet in on two-lane roads. Rises. Deep shadows on sunny days. Or continual abreast unseeing. Stop signs don’t count. License bicyclists. Use their fees to pay for paved berms where oncoming traffic can’t be seen when passing cyclists. Why should recreational bike riding deny roads to trucking, commuters and rural residents? Interstate highways limit low as well as high speeds – 55 or 65 mph, and no slower than 45 mph. Yet our rural roads have no such requirements. Even farm equipment is 30 mph these days.
It will take public opinion, not visits to the county engineer or county commissioners, to change current policy, which is to plant stop signs whenever an accident occurs, and allow bicyclists everywhere except on empty sidewalks.
Alphonse I. Johnson