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streaky

Original Poster:

19,311 posts

132 months

[news] 
Friday 5th October 2012 quote quote all
The following letter appeared in The Daily Telegraph this morning. It's not the usual moan we have on here about the length of time a major road is closed for forensics, etc., so I thought it worthy of an airing as it asks a sensible question.

Letter page in The Daily Telegraph said:
I was stuck for six hours on the Surrey section of the M25 last Saturday in the aftermath of two separate accidents a mile or two apart. Leading up to the site of each accident, there was a stretch of a few hundred yards in which three lanes were closed. Delays were caused by a free-for-all as drivers were left to jockey for position in the one remaining lane.

At the scene of the first accident, I saw one highway official seemingly asleep in the car. At the second point, two police officers were standing watching the chaos.

All this could have been avoided if a couple of officers had been directing the traffic, allowing cars in the four lanes to go through the remaining lane in turn for, say, 30 seconds at a time. Do today’s police feel such work is below them? Or are there health and safety issues?
I'll add: are police today trained in traffic control?

Streaky

Furry Exocet

2,211 posts

64 months

[news] 
Friday 5th October 2012 quote quote all
We may be stood around, but we're waiting to be given a task by the Sgt or SIO, if we're off directing traffic then we aren't available.

If you do start doing traffic directing, people tend to stop and ask questions, which cause even more traffic chaos.

Landshark

1,772 posts

64 months

[news] 
Friday 5th October 2012 quote quote all
weeping

I'm confused as to what this driver would have like the police/Highways to have done?? There were cones and signs tapering the closures on both, also handy matrix signs to also give a clue. I'm sure most drivers come across lane closures often in their driving careers so why was this one difficult to handle?

It seems to me more a dig at the lazy police/Highways officer as he was stuck in a jam?? 😉


Edit to add;

Traffic control is on the job training these days,
It's a task completed often on many roads at various incidents,
Directing traffic however on a motorway is a health hazard!!!
From what it sounds like he is suggesting is two officers in front of four lanes, let one lane at a time go for 30 secs then stop it and let the next go, and repeat.
Sounds fine in theory, but what it's more likely to happen is everyone two cars back and further tries to get into the one lane that's moving. You stop that and then start the next lane and people try to move to that = chaos and it's the officers fault!!
Not to mention motorbikes appearing between vehicles and striking the officers, also HGV's can shield you from some people's views.
I've manually stopped the traffic many times on a motorway, you have to do it one lane at a time, you have to keep your wits about you and have eyes in the back of your head!!!! Releasing it is just as bad, everyone tring to get away quickly and your trying to get out the way ASAP!!




Edited by Landshark on Friday 5th October 19:47


Edited by Landshark on Friday 5th October 20:32

SV8Predator

1,793 posts

48 months

[news] 
Friday 5th October 2012 quote quote all
Defensive lot, aren't you?

Tea Pot One

1,461 posts

111 months

[news] 
Friday 5th October 2012 quote quote all
Just fed up with people seemingly always thinking the worst when they actually don't know what the officers were doing ... it is so predictable ... and sad.

.... says he defensively hehe

Edited by Tea Pot One on Friday 5th October 21:50

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Dogwatch

3,801 posts

105 months

[news] 
Friday 5th October 2012 quote quote all
Stuck for 6 hours and no-one appears to give a damn. No wonder he's fed up!

Cat

1,411 posts

152 months

[news] 
Friday 5th October 2012 quote quote all
Dogwatch said:
Stuck for 6 hours and no-one appears to give a damn. No wonder he's fed up!
No problem, next time I'm dealing a road closure I'll try and appear to give a damn rather than getting on with what needs to be done to get the road reopened as quickly as possible rolleyes

Cat

yellowjack

4,214 posts

49 months

[news] 
Friday 5th October 2012 quote quote all
Furry Exocet said:
If you do start doing traffic directing, people tend to stop and ask questions, which cause even more traffic chaos.
THIS! I'm not BiB, but I drive a lot of miles, and inevitably during those miles, come upon closures. The job of closing roads is not, I imagine, an easy one, logistically, and in the early phase of a closure, dealing with the incident 'Cordon and Control', is of greater priority than erecting diversion signs.

I've lost count of the number of times an exit is closed at a roundabout, cones, police car, flashing lights, hi-viz vests, the works, and a small queue of 'tards obstructing the road while waiting to ask the policeman "I only want to go a little way down there, can you not just let me through?" and one by one they roll up to the cordon officer, only to get the same answer.

I was guilty of that once myself, though in my defence, I was on a bicycle at the time, and therefore not in any danger of obstructing the virtually deserted rural road. Single vehicle accident. Someone failed to negotiate a corner and parked the car upside down in a field, so the Police closed the road while the recovery truck winched it out. "Sorry sir, we can't let you through. You'll have to go an alternative route." "Not even if I walk the bike through the field past the accident?" "Sorry sir, Health and Safety, and Sgt's orders" The trouble is, the alternatives in this area can be many miles, especially in the cold and dark. I was 15 miles into a 20 mile ride, so didn't really want to go back, and the best alternative was about 12 miles.

To be fair to the officer in charge, he listened to my predicament, and let me through the outer cordon as far as a second police car stopping traffic at a small side road. There I was invited to keep warm in the back of the police car, as it was thought that the recovery wouldn't take much longer. I'm glad I chose to wait, as within 20 minutes I was on my way again, instead of facing an extra 45 minutes and 12 miles of riding, in the cold and dark, on unfamiliar roads. Nothing but praise for the guys from the Police on that bitterly cold winter night.


Edited by jeremyc on Tuesday 25th December 20:41

grumpy52

1,012 posts

49 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
This is another case for introducing the zip code used in Germany .
You let one vehicle in when traffic is merging everybody does it even merc/bmw/audi/lorry drivers.

Vaux

1,506 posts

99 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
grumpy52 said:
This is another case for introducing the zip code used in Germany .
You let one vehicle in when traffic is merging everybody does it even merc/bmw/audi/lorry drivers.
It has been, but it's called "merge in turn".
Highway Code rule 134

mph1977

7,032 posts

51 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
grumpy52 said:
This is another case for introducing the zip code used in Germany .
You let one vehicle in when traffic is merging everybody does it even merc/bmw/audi/lorry drivers.
the problem is the average british driver seems to be unable to do that and when people try and help this to happen they get labelled as fk wits ...

Deva Link

26,934 posts

128 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
Landshark said:
I'm confused as to what this driver would have like the police/Highways to have done?? There were cones and signs tapering the closures on both, also handy matrix signs to also give a clue.
If that many vehicles had got into a single lane in advance they'd have probably circled the M25. And then sat there forever as a few people zoomed up the inside.

I'm sorry but I don't care what happened, 6 hours is so far beyond insane I can't think of a word to describe it.

Willy Nilly

4,940 posts

50 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
Cat said:
No problem, next time I'm dealing a road closure I'll try and appear to give a damn rather than getting on with what needs to be done to get the road reopened as quickly as possible rolleyes

Cat
Just sweep the debris to the side of the road and get the traffic flowing again asap.

jimmy the hat

281 posts

30 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
Deva Link said:
If that many cretins had got into a single lane in advance they'd have probably circled the M25. And then sat there forever as a few people used the available, open lanes.

I'm sorry but I don't care what happened, 6 hours is so far beyond insane I can't think of a word to describe it.
Fixed that for you.

A few years back, I sat for four hours on the M25 in the snow as OB had closed the road. The reason for this was that there's a couple of hills and they wanted to prevent 'tards from closing it with their ineptitude as they'd already done on the M11. i.e. One wagon fails to make it up hill and stops. Second wagon reckons they can make it, can't, stops next to first wagon. Third wagon reckons they can make it, can't, road closed. OB have to stop all traffic and let a few from each lane go at a time. Tragic waste of Police time just because people can't be trusted to think for themselves. I'm willing to bet my mortgage that at least 50% of the people around me cursed OB under their breath without giving a second thought to why they were doing what they were doing.

I would also mention that, barring mechanical failure, if you crash on a motorway you're effectively failing at driving in a straight line. I'd like to see a bit more ire directed at the morons who caused the obstruction in the first place rather than those whose thankless job it is to deal with the numpties who can't organise themselves.

I've never been the biggest OB fan but even I've got to stick up for them here.

Cheers, Jim

Deva Link

26,934 posts

128 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
jimmy the hat said:
Fixed that for you.
Not really - the letter suggests the traffic all trying to merge at once was the problem.


I was going to respond to the other stuff you mentioned but your comments are too stupid to spend time on.

jimmy the hat

281 posts

30 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
Deva Link said:
Not really - the letter suggests the traffic all trying to merge at once was the problem.
Precisely what I said, people can't be trusted to think for themselves. Merely filtering down to one lane is apparently reason for a "problem" which is rather depressing isn't it?

Feel free to take it personally even though I wasn't having a pop at you, though.

Unfortunately this is an old lap-top and devoid of irony font.

Cheers, Jim

Deva Link

26,934 posts

128 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
jimmy the hat said:
Feel free to take it personally even though I wasn't having a pop at you, though.
I didn't take it as a pop, but you edited my post and then responded to it.

The point is that when a busy 4 lane motorway is reduced to 1 lane, neither way is going to work, and the letter writer makes a very valid suggestion.

jimmy the hat

281 posts

30 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
Deva Link said:
I didn't take it as a pop, but you edited my post and then responded to it.

The point is that when a busy 4 lane motorway is reduced to 1 lane, neither way is going to work, and the letter writer makes a very valid suggestion.
Well, it seemed like it and apparently my stupidity is at least worth your time to respond to but whatever. Seems like we're essentially agreeing. I wouldn't expect four lanes filtering down to one to not cause a delay. I just find it a bit depressing, although not at all surprising, that it apparently requires OB involvement to effect. BTW, if you'd entertained the stupidity you'd have read an example of exactly what the letter-writer suggests. Again, bravo OB, but a bit depressing that they need to waste their time this way.

Cheers, Jim

speedyguy

2,018 posts

86 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
Deva Link said:
The point is that when a busy 4 lane motorway is reduced to 1 lane, neither way is going to work, and the letter writer makes a very valid suggestion.
The letter writer hasn't got a clue, end of, It's Aready been pointed out the tapers were out.
There has been studies done to see if it's quicker to create an island around incidents to speed up flow with manual traffic control etc but then you get morr stop start traffic & possible shunts.

Every other numbnuts usually stops to ask if there's been an accident or the rd is shut delaying things even more.

The delays are generally banged out to the media, vms miles away (you know the ones you keep moaning about ?)

If people want to make no effort to find info out or ignore it sit in the queue smile

TPS

1,837 posts

96 months

[news] 
Saturday 6th October 2012 quote quote all
Deva Link said:
The point is that when a busy 4 lane motorway is reduced to 1 lane, neither way is going to work, and the letter writer makes a very valid suggestion.
The letter writer does not make a valid suggestion.

Four lanes into one will equal congestion.
End of nothing will change this,repeat nothing.


Standing in live lanes trying to direct cars trucks etc will however result in someone getting run over at some point.
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