Expatriate Owl

A politically-incorrect perspective that does not necessarily tow the party line, on various matters including but not limited to taxation, academia, government and religion.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Setting the Tone for the Day

Some relevant sections of New York's Vehicle and Traffic Law:

VTL § 1110(a):  "Every person shall obey the instructions of any official traffic-control device applicable to him placed in accordance with the provisions of this chapter, unless otherwise directed by a traffic or police officer, subject to the exceptions granted the driver of an authorized emergency vehicle in this title."

VTL § 1102. "No person shall fail or refuse to comply with any lawful order or direction of any police officer or flagperson or other person duly empowered to regulate traffic."

There is this one 4-way intersection not too far from my home.  One of the streets comes in at an odd angle, and it is a cul-de-sac with about 9 homes, plus a driveway that accesses the rear lot of a business establishment.  This street gets a very short green light, and the cycle of the traffic light skips this street every other time.  I have never timed it, but I would guess that in a three minute period, this street might get 15 or 20 seconds.  It is rare that more than 3 cars are waiting for a green to exit this street on to the main highway.  The residents of this quiet street apparently are quite content with the arrangement.

But today, there was a crew doing some work on the main highway, so they routed eastbound traffic through the business's parking lot, around to the back driveway, and onto this street.  And a flag crew (two flagmen and one flagwoman) directed the traffic through the intersection.

Now, according to the two relevant sections of New York's Vehicle and Traffic Law, whenever there is a duly authorized person directing traffic, the duly authorized person trumps the traffic light.  Indeed, this is the law in most if not all states.

So what happened?  I was in the line of cars that was directed through the parking lot of the business, and through that intersection.  And the delay would likely have not been too significant -- Except for the two shmucks who insisted on waiting until the light turned green, while disregarding the flagwoman's directives to drive through the intersection and onto the main highway.

What should have taken four minutes at worst took about nine or ten minutes.

And that was about 10 AM.  I shall not now detail the other frustrations, caused by various and sundry stupid idiots, that punctuated my day today.

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