Oct. 12–Since I’ve taken up the crimson of the Road Warrior over a year ago, I’ve apparent I’m added accessible to regulations and blank than abounding of my readers. If there’s a known, accustomed botheration that experts anticipate a new action or law could advance upon, I’m accommodating to accord it a chance.
My readers, not as abundant or not as readily. Maybe it’s a cultural affair with the Pennsylvania Dutch attitude preferring the government not meddle. I can admit the acumen of that approach, but I like the accord and booty the cavalcade provides. I lob out some camp account (Vehicle Miles Biking Tax anyone?), and readers react, sometimes with a justified eye roll.
But in the aing anniversary or so, Gov. Tom Wolf is accepted to assurance a bill I achievement will prove to save lives. The legislation, SB 172, would acquiesce PennDOT to install acceleration cameras in architecture zones on the Pennsylvania Turnpike, interstates and accompaniment highways acceptable for federal funding, such as Route 22 and Route 33.
I’ve begin readers don’t like acceleration cameras for the aforementioned acumen they don’t appetite borough cops to accept alarm guns. The cameras are beheld as money authoritative machines, addition way for the government to booty money out of your pocket. If anything, acceleration cameras are worse — the cop with the alarm gun will at atomic cull you over and accord you a adventitious to altercate your case or let you off with a warning.
But the austere banned on SB 172 absolute the opportunities to corruption the acceleration cameras for revenue. The bill would additionally accommodate some added administration to advice a decidedly accessible group.
Speeding through architecture zones has authentic to be a absolute hazard in Pennsylvania. Over the accomplished 48 years, 89 PennDOT workers accept absent their lives in roadside collisions in alive assignment zones. The best contempo came in February back a PennDOT artery foreman was dead while agreement assurance flares on Interstate 99 a Altoona.
These are dejected collar bodies assuming a necessary, barren job. For all the accusatory we do about the accompaniment of Pennsylvania’s roads, we accept an obligation to assure the bodies who absolutely advance them.
Thankfully, the Legislature appears to agree.
It took assembly in Harrisburg about two years to amount out, but they drafted a bill that ramped up administration while giving drivers fair warning.
Vehicles traveling added than 10 mph or added over the acquaint acceleration absolute would be begin in abuse of the law. The aboriginal breach would aftereffect in a accounting warning. The aing breach would aftermath a $75 fine, and third time offenders would face a $150 fine.
Protections for drivers are congenital in as well. Each area with a acceleration camera has to accept two signs admonishing drivers of the camera’s presence.
Vehicle owners can alone be answerable a accomplished back workers are present in alive architecture zones.
The cameras accept to abide anniversary calibrations to accomplish abiding they’re accurate, and PennDOT charge aftermath an anniversary address on the cameras, the fines calm and abstracts on assignment area crashes.
The law additionally spells out how accomplished revenues can be spent, with best of the money activity to Pennsylvania Accompaniment Police and the General Assembly.
Lastly, the acceleration camera law has a five-year cessation date broiled in, preventing it from growing into some behemothic exploited apparatus after lawmaker’s go ahead.
But alike accepting to that point appropriate the law to go through six iterations afore it acquired wide, bipartisan support.
For all those limits, Sen. David Argall (R-Berks), the bill’s primary sponsor, didn’t accuse back I batten to him Thursday. Added assembly were about abashed with the abstraction back they were aboriginal approached, but all abandon were eventually able to acquisition accepted ground.
“Everyone is abashed of Big Brother, and I accept that,” Argall said. “The ambition was to get a allotment of legislation that would save lives of both the bodies who assignment in these constructions zones and the bodies who biking through them.”
The bill should be beatific to Wolf’s board on Monday, and his agents accepted the bill to be active into law anon thereafter.
I admit this isn’t a catholicon salve. Speeding wasn’t a agency in an April blast that beatific three PennDOT workers patching potholes on Interstate 80 to the hospital. In that case, a affair tractor bivouac agape a auto into the assignment zone.
Still, it’s an behind footfall in the appropriate direction. Similar legislation already exists in added states after controversy, and I’m somewhat puzzled by all the hoops sponsors had to jump through to accomplish this happen.
I would achievement that the cameras and assorted warnings about the signs will account drivers to apathetic down. If the anniversary PennDOT letters appearance the cameras are causing bodies to apathetic bottomward and assurance is improving, I would achievement the accompaniment would accept the appropriateness to extend the program.
On addition front, a clairvoyant acicular out I glossed over an important affair during my ambagious cavalcade aftermost week.
We all could use reminders — or instructions — on how to use roundabouts. We’re not absolute acceptable at merging… or courtesy.
7/8 Pat Merkowsky, Emmaus
Yikes. Yeah, that may accept been accessible to go over. Fortunately, PennDOT has a accessible video that covers aggregate in four minutes.
If you don’t accept the time for that or an Internet connection, actuality are some basics.
* Apathetic bottomward back you access a roundabout. Back you access the crop line, attending to your larboard to see if any cartage is coming.
* Cull into the ambagious back there’s a safe gap in traffic. Back you access your avenue in the roundabout, arresting and avenue to the right.
* If it’s a multi-lane roundabout, analysis for signs assuming which lanes should be acclimated for which exits. You should be in the appropriate lane if you will accomplish the aboriginal right. Beyond that, cartage patterns may be altered depending on the specific roundabout.
* If you’re in a ambagious back an emergency agent enters, cull out of the ambagious afore you cull over.
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