Edward Abbey


A friend of mine just came back from a visit to France and Paris. As part of the conversation about traffic he made this statement to me, “if you think New York traffic is bad you ought to see Paris! It is the worst traffic in the world.”

I can believe that. It is also the home of the Round A Bout. What is so awe inspiring with the European Round A Bout? I don’t give two hoots about being ‘continental’. If our traffic engineers had their way I am sure that there would never be another stop sign installed and we would change and drive on the other side of the road.

We are being plagued in Kansas with the proliferation of the Round A Bout. Someone in Topeka thinks that they are really cool. I have seen what is worse than a Round A Bout and that is the Double Round About. In fact a friend of mine, that is a good driver, could not get off the one in Emporia and actually had someone lead her to get off of it on to the road she wanted.

How many times have the hue and cry gone out on an intersection that has had a number of grinding crashes? Even when the intersection is open and visible for a mile in each direction the call is for improvements to be made to make them safer.

Even when there are rumble strips, huge stop signs, flashing lights, and signs warning that cross traffic does not stop, there are still wrecks. 99% of the time it is drivers fault to blame. Put down the phone, quit visiting with the passengers, PAY ATTENTION!

So when the cry for improvements at US 281 and US 50 highways was made, up comes the standard KDOT proposal of ROUND A BOUT. But not just any round a bout but one with lanes around the round about so truck traffic does not have to negotiate a too tight of a turn (which results with trucks laying on their sides).

But what is it going to take for anyone to go north through this giant malaria worm. TWO MORE STOP SIGNS! 1.3 Million Dollars to create an even worse intersection! I cannot understand how a round a bout with two bypass lanes will do any more than increase wrecks at the intersection? The original problem was people pulling out in front of US 50 traffic. DRIVERS, STOP AND LOOK BEFORE PULLING OUT INTO AN INTERSECTION!

I have had discussions with my State Rep. and State Senator about these round a bouts and this one in particular. Neither were for the project or any others like it.

My advice to them was to pass a bill that immediately fires any employee that mentions the idea of building any more ROUND A BOUTS!

Part of the reason traffic goes on US 50 is to avoid US 54/400 traffic because the state cannot finish the highway project that was started 25 years ago.

What is the problem with Topeka and all of those who are in charge of our safety? I guess I just have to call it COLLECTIVE INSANITY!

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