Saturday, 13 July 2013

In the news

Since the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix moved to Australia all those years ago, outside of the country very few people have actually heard of Adelaide. Sydney and Melbourne are generally well known but not so much the other cities, especially ours.

Occasionally though, we do make the news. Now that news spreads quickly through the Twittosphere, that can happen quite quickly and the news can spread fast. Regrettably, it is often for the wrong reasons. We all remember those 'lose your licence and you're screwed' adverts from the MAC and the reaction to them. It was not a good look.

Now it is the turn of the town of Clare and its newspaper, the Northern Argus. This has been retweeted more times than I could remember. The article is all about a crossing outside of the Clare Medical Centre. The problem has been rectified, you will be pleased to read, and "near misses should be a thing of the past".

Here's a picture of the crossing thanks to Google Streetview:

The "problem" is that elderly people are leaving the medical centre and crossing the road "in front of cars". They mistakenly think they have right of way.

So what do we do about it?

The road itself runs parallel to the main highway running through the centre of town. You can see it runs between Wright Place and Lennon Street - a distance of about 450m. The medical centre is helpfully pointed out:

You might think a pedestrian crossing could work there. You would be wrong of course. Even though one was installed on Pirie Street in the city recently, we are told it was "the first in South Australia" (not true) and "South Australian drivers aren’t used to zebra crossings".

Luckily, "the council has implemented a plan to avoid future accidents." The solution? Give way signs for pedestrians.

I kid you not.

In addition to the obligation to give way on a narrow and short road, pedestrians have other obligations too. "High visibility vests, tabards, arm bands or clothing will highlight your presence for a significant distance."

And my favourite to finish the article:

Clare neighbourhood watch are giving away high visibility vests for people who walk in early hours or at night, free of charge, thanks to the support of Clare Auto Centre.

Vests can be obtained from the Clare Police Station.

Now what's that saying about the inside of the lunatic asylum appearing normal to the inmates?


  1. I spotted this one on Twitter and saved the Northern Argus article in my 'Stupid' folder. The situation is wrong on several levels, it is hard to know where to start. What bothers me the most is the local government and police who think that they are looking after people by "protecting" us from motorised traffic. They treat roads like a river in flood: an unstoppable natural flow that needs to be respected. That's bullshit. As a society, we have a choice. So many people in roles with authority need to be reeducated. You can choose to give your grandmother a hi-vis vest then speed past her in your 4WD on your way home while she is waiting on the footpath. ... Or not.

  2. i can barely believe it. only in australia i guess