The everyday blog of Richard Bartle.

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7:07pm on Friday, 12th September, 2008:

Digging a Hole


At one end, the road in which I live forms the vertical stroke of a T junction. The road that runs across it is the main one through the village, so it's the one I usually take when I want to go anywhere.

For several days, a group of workmen have been digging this road up to lay some gas pipes. We know they're gas pipes because there's a strong smell of gas (not that this has stopped the people outside the pub from smoking). The roadworks have now reached our T junction, and there are traffic lights to regulate access to the part of the road not being dug up. So far, so normal.

Except, for our road we don't have traffic lights. We have a sign saying "road under traffic light control". This means that when we want to pull out onto the main road, we have to know which traffic light is on red and which is on green. This wouldn't be a problem if we could actually see the traffic lights, but we can't — it's a long set of roadworks. If there's nothing moving, you basically have to take the chance that you're not going to pull out and then find a stream of cars heading towards you.

I can see why they might not want to put a third set of lights on our road, because it would further delay people who wanted to travel through the lights. Why, though, isn't there some kind of indicator to show which way currently has priority? It's not as if it's waiting for some new scientific breakthrough to make it possible — it's just a pair of lights that piggy-back off the exisiting lights. Whichever one is green lights an arrow to show that's the direction it's safe to turn.

I've never seen anything like this in operation, but our road can't be the only place where it would be useful.

Maybe it would ignite the gas or something...

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Copyright © 2008 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).