Thursday, April 29, 2010

Beams of Light

Outside of your faith, who on earth do you look to for "change"?

Your family, friends, local not-for-profit organizations, city and state government entities. You can look to some, a few or all of these and more, I'm sure, when the time comes for a change to be made that will directly affect your way of life.

My reason for this particular blog, which I purposefully titled "Beams of Light", is based on a news brief from BayNews9 the morning of April 29, 2010 (original air date was April 28, 2010):

"37 new pedestrian flags encourage safety on Gulf Blvd" (in Pinellas County) is the headline.

But I'd much rather see a headline that reads: "It's not right, to cross these Beams of Light" to indicate the use of "solar powered cross walks" throughout cities and towns. Pedestrians have just as much right to cross roads as drivers, so why not level the field. Notice I didn't say the "playing" field, because no one should be playing in traffic. This is a very serious matter. Not to mention that some pedestrians do not and can not cross a road as quick as others. So my idea is to set up "solar powered cross walk signals" that are triggered when and only when a pedestrian is attempting to cross a road.

I'll attempt to explain my idea:

Picture yourself at a crosswalk that has the white lines painted on the road for pedestrians to walk across. At the edge of the sidewalk on both sides of the road, parallel to the crosswalk lines that are usually painted on the road itself, there would be two solar powered cross walk signal poles; a total of four - two on each side of the street. The poles would be situated so that a florescent beam of light would aim directly across the street to meet with the two solar powered cross walk poles on the direct opposite side of the street; to create two parallel  beams of light that look like "a bridge".

If a vehicle were to cross the light path, which was indicating a pedestrian was attempting to cross the street, then the driver would be issued a ticket for failing to allow the pedestrian the right of way. Usually when you hit a driver in the "pocket(book)" they tend to sit up straight and pay attention; otherwise they end up paying the piper. Tracking the non compliant drivers would call for the solar powered cross walk poles and signals to somehow be tied to the Red Light Runner cameras. (just a thought there)

All of this is to say ...

As an avid pedestrian myself, I know exactly what it's like to duck and dodge traffic when I know that I should indeed have the right of way to cross a road. And I shouldn't be chicken when it comes to crossing the road; because like the vehicle driver, I too have somewhere I'm trying to get to.