Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Cheap, Failsafe Transporation Improvement Plan

This weekend, the sire of the War Department (aka my father in-law) remarked on how the increased speed limit on the interstate from North Carolina to northern Virginia had improved his trip to visit the Warheads (aka his grandchildren). (As you may recall, the speed limit on I-95 and I-64 was increased last year to 70 mph at the direction of Governor Bob McDonnell). His remark got me thinking of other cheap means of bettering transportation throughout the Commonwealth. Below are three of them.

Replace Stop Signs with Yield Signs.  In most situations, a complete stop is not necessary for anyone’s safety. Generally, stop signs are there to indicate the right of way, and there’s no reason why a yield sign could not serve the same function.  Undoubtedly, greater use of yield signs would save us all gasoline, money and time.

Revamp Handicapped Parking Rules. Just about anywhere, at any time, handicapped parking spaces are going unused while many people temporarily needing an accommodation (e.g., expectant mothers) park in the north 40. I propose that property owners be allowed to reduce the number of parking spaces designated for handicapped drivers provided they replace them other special parking designations that would be on the honor system.  From what I have observed at my own neighborhood grocery store, the system works quite well.

Aggressively Enforce Littering Laws.  My road is not your ashtray, people!  Out West, where the range would become engulfed in flames, drivers face a $1,000 fine for ditching a cigarette butt out a car window.  I suggest the same penalty in the Commonwealth, or, perhaps more appropriately, 10 hours of community service cleaning up all the butts at intersections.  In the meantime, I urge you honk at such drivers, politely pointing out that they dropped something.  Not politely is fine with me, too.

Like the increase in the speed limit little things like these still can better our quality of life without costing us an arm and a leg.

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