2008-04-29

My last road abuse post for a while

The powers that be have repeated the same ol' "Slow down" mantra for so long...

Meanwhile I've dedicated too much time complaining about the same thing and need to move on. Now that road safety's fixed on Bermuda's radar (albeit years too late), maybe concrete solutions will be implemented. There are plenty of them, if you read the Gazette's Letters section. The Bermuda blogs are full of ideas. From Longtail to Vexed to 21 Square as well as the Sucks forum, there are important observations and suggestions that should be looked at.

One recurrent theme in the arena of suggestions is having more of a law enforcement presence on the roads. I'm not sure who was the first to point it out but it's very true as far as Bermuda's drivers are concerned:
Drivers are more afraid of getting caught by the Police than getting into a traffic collision.
That's the answer. "Slow down, be careful" is not working. The powers that be still don't understand. We have a Culture of Recklessness. Look at this PrimeTarget story. Most likely this fella was drunk and or already off-the-road. He abandoned his injured passenger and tried to evade Police.

Just today, at the intersection of Par-la-ville and Church, lights were red and the pedestrian walk sign was about to go off. A bike rider, BC859, runs the light (funny enough he then stops at the light where Bermudiana Road meets Church Street). Every day you see this happen. Weekends, free-for-all. No police presence.

No, we probably don't have the resources to patrol the place more. However, we have technology. Legislate the use of cameras and implement them. Clear the backlog of paperwork and let officers patrol the streets more. Maybe even grant traffic wardens the ability to book traffic offenders. Grant more sweeping powers when it comes to detaining offenders, impounding vehicles. Increase the fines for traffic offenses. Be more stringent when renting cycles (to both tourists *and* locals). Turn the lights on at the Warwick Academy, Whitney and Southampton Primary crossings. Raise the pedestrian crossings throughout the island. And for pete's sake, take a stand on cell phones and ban their use and stop skirting the issue.

Solutions are there. Tangible, logical and realistic solutions. They're there.

4 comments:

DeOnion said...

I think we need a blogger's shadow shadow cabinet.

How's the shadow shadow Minister of Transport sound?

Anonymous said...

How about giving the job of road enforcement to a private company?

Allow them to take a cut of the fines imposed.

There will be a slew of new laws to enact, and we'd need to keep an eye on the company to ensure they're not abusing their position.

But getting a cut of the fines for catching drunk drivers would be like having a licence to print money on a Friday and Saturday night.

It's not like the police are doing anything about the problem.

YAL

Tryangle said...

DeOnion, while I'd love to have Ministry of Housing... Transport would work well. If one of you fine bloggers were running the show I'd be glad to assist. Someone should roll with that idea...

YAL, I think I like that idea of outsourcing it, has it been done in other locations? I'm sure they could find room in that Budget for that venture and the police can focus on other aspects...

DeOnion said...

Governments are generally exceptionally terrible at outsourcing... I mean amazingly bad.

Rent seeking galore. It has happened here in Bermuda and pretty much everywhere else.

Quite frankly, there's no need to outsource core government functions if the government isn't run by clowns.