Road Work

We’ve got a lot of road work going on in my neighborhood. When I leave home, I am greeted by an electronic sign warning me that this state of affairs will go on for another month and I should expect “up to 20 minute delays.” I can live with that because I am very happy the rutted, pot-holed streets are being repaired.

Nonetheless, I could not help but be amused when, having to stop for a red light, thus having time to look around, I saw this:


Zoom in on that and you’ll see that there is an “End Road Work” sign about ten feet ahead of a “Road Work Ahead” sign. I thought that was supid but, having worked in public education all my life, thought to myself, “No doubt there is some regulation that requires each notification.”

The light turned green. I drove on and what did I find at a subsequent intersection?


My goodness! These two notices are so close they could spawn. Not only that, but if you view the signs as you drive toward them directly—rather than standing across the road as I did to take the previous picture—the “Ended” sign is completely obscured by a bush which, I must assume, did not grow out to cover the sign after the road work began.


OK, I understand. We are at the borderline where one road work project meets another. The crews are following the rules, I’m sure, to alert us to the end of one and the beginning of another. All that said, it’s still stupid. It’s an example of a case in which it might be very good to allow the people on the ground, at the site, to make a decision for themselves. We adopt policies and pass legislation all the time for very good reasons. What we lose, too often, is the ability to let a person on the ground, at the time, make an exception when to enact the rule is just plain stupid.

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