Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Albany Stop Lights: The 12-second grace period

Drivers are douchebags.  This is something we all know.  When you get behind the wheel, you're a douchebag.  Instantly.  Admit it.  Sometimes I rent cars, and when I get behind the wheel, I'm a douchebag, too.  It's just how it is.

However, there is one aspect of driver douchebaggery that routinely grinds my gears:  the absurd grace period that every Albany driver assumes they have when approaching a stop light.  The grace period is generally about 2-3 cycles of any given light.  And someone recently put together a wonderful five-minute video about it:

The first segment of the video is actually taken at Lark and Lancaster Streets, otherwise known as the intersection at which I live for another month.  And the site of the gorgeous Trinity Methodist Church, the choir of which I am a member.  It moves to Washington Park, then to the intersection of Madison and New Scotland Avenues, and finally to Chapel Street between Columbia Street and Sheridan Avenue.  Pay close attention and you can see some of Albany's finest running red lights, as well.

A really great description of the impact of this type of selfish, immature and dangerous behavior can be found on the Albany Times Union Blog, from which this video was taken.  Additionally, it proposes some really good, cheap, easy solutions that work psychologically, such as removing traffic lights on some of the most quiet streets in Center Square and Washington Park.

Here's the URL for that post: http://blog.timesunion.com/albany/red-lights-mean-nothing/8611/.  Normally I only link to something, but I want to make sure everyone gets to this site.  It's important.

Especially if you're one of those douchebags.

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