Friday, August 14, 2009

Everyone Stay Focussed Until We Get to the Other Side

Today as I was driving along I had the radio tuned to a station from the nearby big city. The inevitable big city traffic report came on and there were accidents on two of the city's bridges. One of my faithful Bloglodites had recently mentioned how annoying the phenomenon of rush hour bridge accidents is. He couldn't understand how this seemed to happen so frequently. It does make one wonder.

Are there really more accidents on the bridges during rush hour than other places during rush hour or is it just that it's more noticeable because it messes things up so bad? Also, why are there accidents on a bridge during rush hour? Isn't everybody just basically following the person in front of them? I don't personally drive in the big city rush hour, so I don't know what's going on for sure, but let me speculate. People aren't paying attention and they are running into the back end of the person in front of them or maybe... wait for it... maybe they are TAILGATING. And to clarify, I mean they are driving really close to the car in front of them and not that they are partying on the bridge. The only other reason I can think of is perhaps they have accidents when changing lanes. Likely changing lanes to try to gain some small time advantage.

Basically these bridge accidents in a lot of cases must be the result of undue care and attention and/or impatience. You people out there getting into accidents on the bridge need to try to be more team players. Let's get everybody safely over the bridge so we don't mess up the traffic for everybody. Stay focussed people! until you get to the other side. Then you can get into your accident.

I have one anecdote about a bridge accident. One time while traveling along the Pacific Coast of Washington State with the family we decided to cross the Columbia River to make a quick visit to Astoria on the Oregon side of the river. This required using a rather long bridge over the mouth of the Columbia. We were heading across the bridge and saw that traffic was backed up ahead (because of an accident it turned out). We decided we would turn around rather than wait. The kids were disappointed as they had hoped to say they had been to Oregon if only for a short visit. Before turning around I noticed that just ahead was the welcome to Oregon sign, so I drove under the sign before turning around and heading back to Washington. The kids got to cross Oregon off the list of states they had visited after all.


  1. Thanks for taking up my cause. I just don't get it. It takes maybe a minute or two to cross the freakin' bridge. Can't they just get across?

    Not too long ago, in a line-up waiting for the bridge, we were crawling along and I was bumped from behind. I guess the guy behind me was texting or something and didn't stop, but we were going so slow it made no nevermind. I just quickly got out, took a look at it, listened to the guy apologize, shook my head, then got back in the car. I didn't want to keep anyone waiting.

  2. You didn't get out and punch him in the face, slash his tires or kick in his headlights? How very Canadian of you Guy.

  3. Bridge, smidge. Just be happy you weren't in a tunnel.

    For example, in 1982 in Afghanistan, a fuel tanker in a military convoy exploded inside the Salang Tunnel, unleashing a chain reaction of fiery explosions and death. Drivers of cars, trucks and buses evidently continued to enter the tunnel after the explosion. Soviet troops, fearing that the explosion might have been a rebel attack, closed off both ends with tanks, trapping many inside. Some burned to death; others were killed by smoke and by carbon monoxide escaping from vehicles whose drivers kept their engines idling to stay warm in the freezing cold. As many as 700 Soviet troops and 2,000 Afghan soldiers and civilians may have died.