Traffic calming makes me angry

There used to be a mini-roundabout in Clapham. It was simply a solid white circle painted in the middle of intersection, with curvy white arrows painted around it in a clockwise direction. If the tarmac was raised at all, it was hardly noticeable.

This meant that vehicles used to zoom across it, often flouting traffic laws and often ignoring the zebra crossing that immediately succeeded it on one of its tributaries. In hindsight, it was a bit dangerous—mainly to cyclists and pedestrians.

A few weeks ago, two workmen dug a big hole where the white circle used to be. And over the two weeks that followed, they built a proper roundabout, meticulously cutting the edge stones and the cobble stones that form its centre. It was lovely to see the road markings as they calculated the arc of the new arrows that would need to be painted, and how far away they should be from one another to ensure they were uniformly spaced.

A couple of weeks after its inauguration, there is a big black line cutting a chord going across it. It’s either rubber or some nasty fluid that has emanated from a vehicle. Judging by its angle, that vehicle was going way too fast and didn’t realise that a hump now furnished the road. Its driver, I suspect, was an idiot.

Since last week, the roundabout has supported four new ornaments in the form of traffic cones. I suspect this is to warn approaching motorists that there is a perfectly legal road feature in their wake. I also suspect that its introduction might be a reaction to possible legal action being pursued against the local council by the aforementioned alleged idiot, in a bid to avoid any possible future claims.

What will happen next, I don’t know. I expect additional signage will be introduced to cater for the speeding idiots. I only hope that the cones are not a permanent feature.


One Response to “Traffic calming makes me angry”

  1. Simon on May 17th, 2011 16:33

    As I know you are pedantic I thought I would point out

    “I suspect this is to warn approaching motorists that there is a perfectly legal road feature in their wake”

    Wake is behind, not in front.

    Way, may be a better term. Or you could refer to the stupid idiots that have crashed over it who look in their mirror to see the perfectly legit … But maybe not as they had no doubt driven over and destroyed the signs anyway.

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