Pedestrians at risk as authorities turn a blind eye to laws

Double yellow lines

Double yellow lines

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It’s recently been reported that a Chief Constable has recommended the decriminalising of illegal drugs on the basis the law is too difficult to enforce.

That has led me to reflect on changes which might be made to the Highway Code to reflect current practice:

Yellow hatchings/pedestrian (zebra) crossings: indicate where to stop at a junction

Double-yellow lines: you may park so long as at least two wheels are on the pavement

Pavements: for parking cars; pedestrians, particularly those with children, should walk in the road (where they are less likely to be run down by cyclists)

Traffic lights (especially at road works): only the first three cars may go through at red

Mobile phone: you can use while driving, so long as you put down the coffee mug in your other hand

20mph zone: don’t exceed 40mph (OK, then, we’ll make it 60, but we will be quite annoyed if you go over this)

40mph: universally acceptable constant speed, regardless of the nature of the road/traffic

Motorway (particularly temporary) speed limits: just advisory

Speed cameras: brake hard

Someone in your way? It’s quite OK to undertake, to tailgate, or otherwise harass them – who do they think they are?

Indicators: to be used only after you have begun the manoeuvre

Hazard lights: when switched on you may do what you like

No rules apply to taxi drivers or motorcyclists

Car insurance/road tax: optional

Leaving to one side the selfish mentality which lays behind such common infringements of the law, I (now seriously) ask what local authorities and police are doing to combat what is, after all, a significant potential danger to other road users and pedestrians.

Just try standing in the Waddington Road 20mph zone and watch 90%+ traffic regularly exceeding the limit, and you may conclude, as I have – they are doing absolutely nothing.

In my 20+ years as a secondary school Head, I followed a simple principle: never introduce a rule you are not prepared to enforce. Why? Because to do so leads to other rules being treated with contempt. If you can break this one with impunity, then you can break that one too.

The matter is really very simple: so why, then, does it appear to elude senior officers/officials and councillors? Either they are unable (perhaps, as with drugs, it’s just too hard), or they are unwilling, to enforce the rules they make and on which they squander taxpayers’ money erecting signage to be ignored, and smiley face speed reminders which never last more than a few days. Or, of course, they simply don’t care.

Which is it? I think we’re entitled to know.

(Dr) Peter Shepherd,