Smoke alarms save lives!



  • So on Saturday night I was traveling on the lovely WTF that is the DC beltway (home to 4 of the most congested interchanges in the country).

    I come around a bend in the road and find traffic all over screeching to a halt.  I mean tires squealing, people swerving to avoid others, with myself barely avoiding collisions (in front and behind me).  Why?  Because around this particular bend was one of those electronic signs spanning the entire freeway with the message "Change you clock change your battery (pause, blank, next lines) smoke alarms save lives!"

    After passing under the sign, traffic flow resumed normally for the remainder of the trip.

    Thanks for helping me stay safe. 



  • @djork said:

    So on Saturday night I was traveling on the lovely WTF that is the DC beltway (home to 4 of the most congested interchanges in the country).

    I come around a bend in the road and find traffic all over screeching to a halt.  I mean tires squealing, people swerving to avoid others, with myself barely avoiding collisions (in front and behind me).  Why?  Because around this particular bend was one of those electronic signs spanning the entire freeway with the message "Change you clock change your battery (pause, blank, next lines) smoke alarms save lives!"

    After passing under the sign, traffic flow resumed normally for the remainder of the trip.

    Thanks for helping me stay safe. 

    Whoever did the text must ave been smoking something. 



  • I have seen similar.

    Here in Albany, NY, at the intersection of I-90 and I-787, when getting on west 90 off of north 787, there is a very tall ramp, at the top of which is a sharp turn that is insufficiently banked, with much darting back and forth to bet between the lanes for eastbound and westbound.

    A couple of years ago, an electronic sign planted there was displaying a message.

    Was it telling me that there was an accident ahead?  No.

    Was it telling me that there was congestion at the I-87 interchange a few miles away?  No.

    Was it telling me to tune in to the TIS station on 1610 AM?  No.

    No, the message that they decided was so mind-numbingly, gut-wrenchingly, earth-shatteringly beyond urgent that it required me to take my eyes off of this very dangerous intersection was....  speed twice in work zone/lose your licence.

    Fucking brilliant.



  • I knew it! I always suspected those signs are the CAUSE of the traffic... 

    And all this time I thought it was just in my head.



  • Hmm... I might be retarded, but i don't understand it. Why did that text make people stop their cars?



  • @Zatanix said:

    Hmm... I might be retarded, but i don't understand it. Why did that text make people stop their cars?

    Well certainly nobody had to slow down, but some morons always hit the brakes to read those signs.  Another factor that adds to the WTF here is that the message could have fit on one "screen" worth of sign space... so there would have been less of a chance of an idiot having to slow down to read the whole thing.



  • @djork said:

    @Zatanix said:

    Hmm... I might be retarded, but i don't understand it. Why did that text make people stop their cars?

    Well certainly nobody had to slow down, but some morons always hit the brakes to read those signs.  Another factor that adds to the WTF here is that the message could have fit on one "screen" worth of sign space... so there would have been less of a chance of an idiot having to slow down to read the whole thing.

    Right, just because YOU are smart enough to not jam on the brakes (or hopefully even slow down) doesn't mean there aren't 50 other people around you that won't. Besides that, it really on takes one person jamming on their brakes to cause a huge traffic jam. 



  • If you drive enough in the DC area, you learn that the other drivers stop randomly for a seemingly endless list of reasons: construction, rain, snow, a gust of wind, a fender-bender on the other loop of the Beltway, a sign about smoke detectors, boredom, stupidity, &c.



  • For anyone unfamiliar with the DC area, I present: Tourist's Guide to Driving Around Washington, D.C.

    <font face="verdana, arial, helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">If you run the red light, be sure to smile for the $100 "picture" you will
    receive courtesy of DMV. However, if you don't go as soon as the light
    turns green, you will get cussed out in 382 languages, none of them
    English. If you actually stop at a yellow light, you will be rear-ended
    and shot at.

    </font>

     



  • I have a set of rules which I'm pretty sure are the unofficial driving rules for DC:

    1. All road signs and lane markings are, at best, suggestions.
    2. The right lane of any two-lane road is for parking only.
    3. The left lane of any two-lane road is for double parking only.
    4. The following is a list of acceptable places on which to drive:
      1. Roadways
      2. Sidewalks
      3. Front yards
      4. The backs of pedestrians
      5. (In a hurry only) The National Mall
    5. Green means go, yellow means speed up, red means go unless there is a camera.
    6. Anyone turning left should be subjected to horns, screamed invectives, and the occasional gunfire -- unless you're the one turning left.
    7. If you have a police officer behind you, obey the laws only as long as it takes you to maneuver your way behind the officer, and then follow him as he commits all sorts of traffic violations.
    8. Only idiots are ever in the wrong.
    9. If a car has a license plate other than Maryland, Virginia, or DC, feel free to side-swipe it into a building.  They're just tourists, after all.
    10. Parking signs and meters must be followed 100% of the time at the city center, and the percentage drops in direct correlation to how far you are from the Capitol Building.  The exact ratio depends on the day, time of day, and whether it's so cold the meter maids don't want to get out of their vehicles.

     



  • @bstorer said:

    If you drive enough in the DC area, you learn that the other drivers stop randomly for a seemingly endless list of reasons: construction, rain, snow, a gust of wind, a fender-bender on the other loop of the Beltway, a sign about smoke detectors, boredom, stupidity, &c.

    Gah.  This pisses me off daily; an accident on the other side of the highway somehow is jamming up my side.  Christ people, don't stop and look, haven't you ever seen an accident before?  Get moving!  You can probably find the same or even much worse accidents on youtube when you get home if it's that interesting!

    Seriously though, I think the problem is with that much volume, just one or two people will slam on the brakes when they initially see an accident on the other side of the highway, and that's enough to cause an hour or two of slowdown and jams.



  • @shadowman said:

    @bstorer said:

    If you drive enough in the DC area, you learn that the other drivers stop randomly for a seemingly endless list of reasons: construction, rain, snow, a gust of wind, a fender-bender on the other loop of the Beltway, a sign about smoke detectors, boredom, stupidity, &c.

    Gah.  This pisses me off daily; an accident on the other side of the highway somehow is jamming up my side.  Christ people, don't stop and look, haven't you ever seen an accident before?  Get moving!  You can probably find the same or even much worse accidents on youtube when you get home if it's that interesting!

    Seriously though, I think the problem is with that much volume, just one or two people will slam on the brakes when they initially see an accident on the other side of the highway, and that's enough to cause an hour or two of slowdown and jams.

    Bingo.  All it takes is one person, and the ripple effect results in traffic five miles back.  I live in VA and work in MD, so every time one means of getting from one to the other is backed up, I'm stuck.  It took me 2.5 hours to go 10 miles last Wednesday.  I hate this city.



  • @shadowman said:

    @bstorer said:

    If you drive enough in the DC area, you learn that the other drivers stop randomly for a seemingly endless list of reasons: construction, rain, snow, a gust of wind, a fender-bender on the other loop of the Beltway, a sign about smoke detectors, boredom, stupidity, &c.

    Gah.  This pisses me off daily; an accident on the other side of the highway somehow is jamming up my side.  Christ people, don't stop and look, haven't you ever seen an accident before?  Get moving!  You can probably find the same or even much worse accidents on youtube when you get home if it's that interesting!

    Seriously though, I think the problem is with that much volume, just one or two people will slam on the brakes when they initially see an accident on the other side of the highway, and that's enough to cause an hour or two of slowdown and jams.

    At least it is slightly gratifying to know there is a reason you were driving in first gear for the last half hour.  I hate it when you finally get out of the traffic and there is nothing there, no sign, no stall, no accident, not even people trying to merge.  All of a sudden in the middle of no where, everyone just speeds up to the limit again.

    Aaargh! Why? 



  • @Jetts said:

    @shadowman said:

    @bstorer said:

    If you drive enough in the DC area, you learn that the other drivers stop randomly for a seemingly endless list of reasons: construction, rain, snow, a gust of wind, a fender-bender on the other loop of the Beltway, a sign about smoke detectors, boredom, stupidity, &c.

    Gah.  This pisses me off daily; an accident on the other side of the highway somehow is jamming up my side.  Christ people, don't stop and look, haven't you ever seen an accident before?  Get moving!  You can probably find the same or even much worse accidents on youtube when you get home if it's that interesting!

    Seriously though, I think the problem is with that much volume, just one or two people will slam on the brakes when they initially see an accident on the other side of the highway, and that's enough to cause an hour or two of slowdown and jams.

    At least it is slightly gratifying to know there is a reason you were driving in first gear for the last half hour.  I hate it when you finally get out of the traffic and there is nothing there, no sign, no stall, no accident, not even people trying to merge.  All of a sudden in the middle of no where, everyone just speeds up to the limit again.

    Aaargh! Why?

    There's actually a lot of serious and fascinating study about concepts just like this.  Traffic engineering strikes me as 1/2 psychology and 1/2 fluid dynamics.



  • @Jetts said:

    I hate it when you finally get out of the traffic and there is nothing there, no sign, no stall, no accident, not even people trying to merge.  All of a sudden in the middle of no where, everyone just speeds up to the limit again.

    Aaargh! Why? 


    Well, the car in front of you was going slow because the car in front of it was going slow, which was going slow because the car in front of it was also going slow; ad infinitum - the original reason was probably an accident two weeks ago a dozen miles ahead of where the slowdown is now.



  • @bstorer said:

    There's actually a lot of serious and fascinating study about concepts just like this.  Traffic engineering strikes me as 1/2 psychology and 1/2 fluid dynamics.

    I was looking into traffic simulation, and apparently the explanation is: some morons just slow down randomly for no discernible reason.



  • @Random832 said:

    @Jetts said:

    I hate it when you finally get out of the traffic and there is nothing there, no sign, no stall, no accident, not even people trying to merge.  All of a sudden in the middle of no where, everyone just speeds up to the limit again.

    Aaargh! Why?


    Well, the car in front of you was going slow because the car in front of it was going slow, which was going slow because the car in front of it was also going slow; ad infinitum - the original reason was probably an accident two weeks ago a dozen miles ahead of where the slowdown is now.

    Actually, because the Beltway is a loop, it could be that you slowed down because the car in front of you slowed down because the car in front of it slowed down... because the original car slowed down because you slowed down.



  • I think the Germans got it right. No highway speed limit, minimum required speed of 60km/h. In fact, raise that up to 80 or 90 and let the system selectively remove it's own problems over time.



  • @Random832 said:

    @Jetts said:

    I hate it when you finally get out of the traffic and there is nothing there, no sign, no stall, no accident, not even people trying to merge.  All of a sudden in the middle of no where, everyone just speeds up to the limit again.

    Aaargh! Why? 


    Well, the car in front of you was going slow because the car in front of it was going slow, which was going slow because the car in front of it was also going slow; ad infinitum - the original reason was probably an accident two weeks ago a dozen miles ahead of where the slowdown is now.

    This means, if I have to cut someone off to make a turn, I could get stuck in my own traffic jam on my way home the next day.  I'm sorry, Karma, I had to get to the turning lane! 



  • @Jetts said:

    @Random832 said:
    @Jetts said:

    I hate it when you finally get out of the traffic and there is nothing there, no sign, no stall, no accident, not even people trying to merge.  All of a sudden in the middle of no where, everyone just speeds up to the limit again.

    Aaargh! Why?


    Well, the car in front of you was going slow because the car in front of it was going slow, which was going slow because the car in front of it was also going slow; ad infinitum - the original reason was probably an accident two weeks ago a dozen miles ahead of where the slowdown is now.

    This means, if I have to cut someone off to make a turn, I could get stuck in my own traffic jam on my way home the next day.  I'm sorry, Karma, I had to get to the turning lane!

    And I was stuck in traffic for two and a half hours last week because I stopped short once in 1999!



  • @Jetts said:

    @Random832 said:
    @Jetts said:

    I hate it when you finally get out of the traffic and there is nothing there, no sign, no stall, no accident, not even people trying to merge.  All of a sudden in the middle of no where, everyone just speeds up to the limit again.

    Aaargh! Why? 


    Well, the car in front of you was going slow because the car in front of it was going slow, which was going slow because the car in front of it was also going slow; ad infinitum - the original reason was probably an accident two weeks ago a dozen miles ahead of where the slowdown is now.

    This means, if I have to cut someone off to make a turn, I could get stuck in my own traffic jam on my way home the next day.  I'm sorry, Karma, I had to get to the turning lane! 

    That only tends to happen on roads that get a lot of traffic 24/7 - otherwise it'll generally clear up overnight. They tend to propagate backwards, too, so they'll dissipate somewhat as they go past interchanges.

    /me wonders if such a jam has ever propagated cross-country down a major interstate



  • @Random832 said:

    @Jetts said:

    I hate it when you finally get out of the traffic and there is nothing there, no sign, no stall, no accident, not even people trying to merge.  All of a sudden in the middle of no where, everyone just speeds up to the limit again.

    Aaargh! Why? 


    Well, the car in front of you was going slow because the car in front of it was going slow, which was going slow because the car in front of it was also going slow; ad infinitum - the original reason was probably an accident two weeks ago a dozen miles ahead of where the slowdown is now.

    Thanks for the tip, detective. 



  • I'm amused by Wikipedia's page on Road rage (which I got to by following the wikitrail). Apparently, one of the common manifestations involves...

    suddenly jamming the parking brake and sliding into a telephone pole to scare other motorists
    .

    Does this really happen that often?


     



  • @Sunstorm said:

    I'm amused by Wikipedia's page on Road rage (which I got to by following the wikitrail). Apparently, one of the common manifestations involves...

    suddenly jamming the parking brake and sliding into a telephone pole to scare other motorists
    .

    Does this really happen that often?


     

    I often get the urge to crash my car into annoying drivers or to let them change lanes right into me or something, but crashing into roadside lighting has never seemed like good revenge on stupid drivers around me.



  • @Random832 said:

    @Jetts said:
    @Random832 said:
    @Jetts said:

    I hate it when you finally get out of the traffic and there is nothing there, no sign, no stall, no accident, not even people trying to merge.  All of a sudden in the middle of no where, everyone just speeds up to the limit again.

    Aaargh! Why?


    Well, the car in front of you was going slow because the car in front of it was going slow, which was going slow because the car in front of it was also going slow; ad infinitum - the original reason was probably an accident two weeks ago a dozen miles ahead of where the slowdown is now.

    This means, if I have to cut someone off to make a turn, I could get stuck in my own traffic jam on my way home the next day.  I'm sorry, Karma, I had to get to the turning lane!

    That only tends to happen on roads that get a lot of traffic 24/7 - otherwise it'll generally clear up overnight. They tend to propagate backwards, too, so they'll dissipate somewhat as they go past interchanges.

    /me wonders if such a jam has ever propagated cross-country down a major interstate

    TRWTF is using /me. 



  • @Sunstorm said:

    I'm amused by Wikipedia's page on Road rage (which I got to by following the wikitrail). Apparently, one of the common manifestations involves...

    suddenly jamming the parking brake and sliding into a telephone pole to scare other motorists
    .

    Does this really happen that often?


     

    LOL.  I liked:

    stopping two or more vehicles for an impromptu and unsanctioned boxing match in the median

    Impromptu and unsanctioned boxing match.  Clever.  Perhaps we should add to the list?  How about:

    Stopping several vehicles to stage a roadside production of West Side Story during rush hour.

     



  • @shadowman said:

    @Sunstorm said:

    I'm amused by Wikipedia's page on Road rage (which I got to by following the wikitrail). Apparently, one of the common manifestations involves...

    suddenly jamming the parking brake and sliding into a telephone pole to scare other motorists
    .

    Does this really happen that often?

    LOL.  I liked:

    stopping two or more vehicles for an impromptu and unsanctioned boxing match in the median

    Impromptu and unsanctioned boxing match.  Clever.  Perhaps we should add to the list?  How about:

    Stopping several vehicles to stage a roadside production of West Side Story during rush hour.

    Oh my!  Somebody better put the warning on that page that it isn't up to Wikipedia's standards! 



  • Last Friday some jerk was standing on an overpass waving at traffic to get people to read his political signage.  I almost called the cops because of the traffic situation.  If I see him again I will.



  • @Sunstorm said:

    I think the Germans got it right. No highway speed limit, minimum required speed of 60km/h. In fact, raise that up to 80 or 90 and let the system selectively remove it's own problems over time.

     Unfortunately, when the "problems" are "selectively removed", they tend not to be so "selective" about who else on the road gets "removed" with them.
     



  • Hm, I have considered seeing if those signs can be changed to read "READING ELECTRIC SIGNS MAY CAUSE CRASHES"


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Sunstorm said:

    I think the Germans got it right. No highway speed limit[...]
    Not for want of trying: http://uk.reuters.com/article/environmentNews/idUKL2946352820071029

    Imposing a standard speed
    limit of 130 kph (80 mph) on German motorways would have scant
    impact on the environment and only hurt domestic carmakers, the
    country's VDA auto industry group said on Monday.

    [...] 

    Wissmann was reacting to a Social Democrats (SPD) vote at
    the weekend to support a speed limit as a way to curb emissions
    of greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2). The SPD governs in a
    coalition with Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives.

    Merkel ruled out the idea on Sunday.

     



  • @shadowman said:

    @bstorer said:

    If you drive enough in the DC area, you learn that the other drivers stop randomly for a seemingly endless list of reasons: construction, rain, snow, a gust of wind, a fender-bender on the other loop of the Beltway, a sign about smoke detectors, boredom, stupidity, &c.

    Gah.  This pisses me off daily; an accident on the other side of the highway somehow is jamming up my side.  Christ people, don't stop and look, haven't you ever seen an accident before?  Get moving!  You can probably find the same or even much worse accidents on youtube when you get home if it's that interesting!

    Seriously though, I think the problem is with that much volume, just one or two people will slam on the brakes when they initially see an accident on the other side of the highway, and that's enough to cause an hour or two of slowdown and jams.

    You just don't get it.  The guy posting it on youtube has to stop and film it for everyone else.  This causes the traffic jam.  It's a catch22, you want it on youtube, someone has to hold up traffic to film it.  You want them to not post it on youtube, everyone slows down to look because it's their only chance to see it. 

    With everyones facination about these types of incidents, I want to know why we don't do public executions any more.  I bet the ratings would sail through the roof and no need for the writer's guild. 



  • I dunno about other places, but here in the Chicago area, "Gaper's Delay" is a standard part of the traffic radio lexicon ... I just love it that the inborn human tendancy to slow down and try to see something horrible is actually built into the system...

     

    -me



  • @bstorer said:

    If you drive enough in the DC area, you learn that the other drivers stop randomly for a seemingly endless list of reasons: construction, rain, snow, a gust of wind, a fender-bender on the other loop of the Beltway, a sign about smoke detectors, boredom, stupidity, &c.

     

    This is a regular occurrence on the NJ Turnpike. The most frequent causes of traffic jams (in descending order of frequency) are:

     

    1) Moving violations (rubbernecking of people receiving tickets)

    2) Inexplicably stopped groups of vehicles on the shoulder, their drivers standing confused nearby (fender-benders that have caused no discernable damage)

    3) Inexperienced drivers stopped in traffic lanes waiting for a tow truck to change a flat.

    4) Poorly timed construction (rush-hour, major holidays weekends)

    5) Forgotten construction signage (empty areas of roadway inexplicably blocked by cones)

    6) Large pieces of debris in the roadway (ladders, bumpers, etc)

     

    And my all-time favorite reason for traffic on the Turnpike:

     

    The NJ Turnpike has two roadways in each direction in Northern NJ, the Express (cars only) and the Local (cars + trucks) roads. When you get on the Turnpike, there are large signs advising whether it is advisable to take the Express or the Local (i.e. "CONGESTION AHEAD, ROADWAY CLOSED: ALL CARS USE LOCAL"). Invariably, these signs are completely wrong. By directing all traffic to one roadway or the other, they cause huge backups that last for miles. Well-informed motorists will always choose the opposite road, and encounter absolutely no delays.

     



  • Ugh! I live in Los Angeles, so I can relate to stupid driving stories. Last Thanksgiving it was raining. I was having some family over and needed to run out to the store to pick up a few things. There's a Whole Foods down the street that was likely to have some ingredient I needed that I couldn't find at the regular grocery store, so I begrudgingly jumped in the car to run over there and pick it up. This particular Whole Foods is on a hill and has an underground parking garage. I was coming down the hill to make a right into the parking garage. However, there was a traffic cone in the entrance indicating that the garage was full, so don't turn in. I could see that from half-way up the hill. The person coming up the hill was apparently too stupid or preoccupied to look 10 feet in front of them and had already started the turn into the garage when they noticed the traffic cone. They stopped their car half way into my lane and were just sitting there straddling both lanes with traffic piling up in front of and behind them. And they just sat there dumbfounded about what to do. People started honking, but they wouldn't move. The driver just kept looking at the traffic cone, then looking at me, then looking in the rear-view mirror over and over again.


    If I recall correctly, I ended up just driving past the store (once the idiot in front of me moved), and went back home. On the way home, I came to a 4-way stop. Now, I often see dumb things happen at 4-way stops in my neighborhood. Sometimes people don't stop, or they signal to go one way, then turn a different way, or whatever. But for some reason, when it's raining, the stupidity jumps about 10-fold. I pull up to a 4-way stop and the person in front of me starts to drive through it. Then half-way into the intersection, they just stop. It's like they suddenly forgot how to drive through an intersection. They put on their turn signal for a second. Then it goes off. Then, after about a minute or two, they just start driving forward again. I'm guessing they were trying to find something in an unfamiliar neighborhood, and didn't know if they were supposed to turn onto one of the side streets. But what's so hard about driving through the intersection, pulling over, and stopping to think for a minute? How is stopping in an intersection ever a good idea?

    Thank sod I don't have to drive on the highways to get to work. I'd probably just shoot myself to get it over with.



  • @optional said:

    I dunno about other places, but here in the Chicago area, "Gaper's Delay" is a standard part of the traffic radio lexicon ... I just love it that the inborn human tendancy to slow down and try to see something horrible is actually built into the system...

    -me

    Here it's called rubbernecking.  Equally common is the concept of sunshine delays; one of the major highways runs perfectly such that the commute is driving into the morning sun, and again into the setting sun.  There's only enough variation to insure that no matter what time of year, you always get the opportunity to be blinded.



  • @dcardani said:

    But for some reason, when it's raining, the stupidity jumps about 10-fold.

    Something about weather must make people's brains stop working.  Here in Canada, pretty much everyone can survive snowy, icy roads.  There are a few more accidents than in the summer, but in January pretty much everyone is driving sensibly (except guys in giant 4x4 trucks who don't realize that 4 wheel drive doesn't help you stop any faster than the rest of us.)  But, we are just getting to the time of year where there is ice on the road for the first time, and I know exactly what will happen.  The very first day there is actual ice or snow on the roads, there will be 10X the accidents and cars in the ditch.  After a few days everyone will settle back into their normal driving habits and it will be normal again.

    Why, though, is that first snowfall so hard for people?  It's not like it doesn't do this EVERY YEAR!

    It was even worse when I lived in Calgary.  In the winter everyone would be driving slow, then a Chinook would hit, melt all the snow, and everyone would start to drive fast again.  Two days later when its cold and snowy, everyone is still driving like its springtime, and crashing into bus stops and each other, and trying very hard to dent my car.  This is repeated every few weeks, every time the snow gets melted by the beloved Chinooks.  I almost preferred it when it was just -40deg and bone dry.  No ice or water to worry about.
     



  • @Jetts said:

    But, we are just getting to the time of year where there is ice on the road for the first time, and I know exactly what will happen.  The very first day there is actual ice or snow on the roads, there will be 10X the accidents and cars in the ditch.  After a few days everyone will settle back into their normal driving habits and it will be normal again.

    Why, though, is that first snowfall so hard for people?  It's not like it doesn't do this EVERY YEAR!

    And I thought it's only here like that. In Vienna, every year when there is snow for the first time. traffic breaks down, even if it's just 2mm that melt away in seconds. Seems like a self-fullfilling prophecy to me.



  • @Random832 said:


    /me wonders if such a jam has ever propagated cross-country down a major interstate

    There have certainly been some long propagations in the UK - but even the length of the country is tiny compared to the US.

    Waves of dense traffic not only propagate backwards, they can intensify, because people brake more sharply (on entering the jam) than they accelerate (on leaving the jam). It's particularly bad when a road is carrying above its 'critical' traffic flow, then any problem can cause a complete gridlock. Also, peak flow normally occurs with vehicle speeds around 50mph, hence some very busy motorways now implement variable speed limits; slowing cars down in the right places eases congestion.

    The opposite, regions of sparse traffic, propagate FORWARDS, but at a lesser speed than the actual vehicles.

    Does anyone know what sort of journal would publish papers on traffic flow dynamics? It could come under so many things; psychology, transport, geography, civil engineering, fluid dynamics, computer simulations, etc etc 



  • @m0ffx said:

    Does anyone know what sort of journal would publish papers on traffic flow dynamics? It could come under so many things; psychology, transport, geography, civil engineering, fluid dynamics, computer simulations, etc etc 

    There's one subject-specific journal with the amazingly creative title of "Transportation", ISSN 0049-4488. Otherwise they tend to be published in applied mathematics, applied physics, and psychology journals.



  • @asuffield said:

    @m0ffx said:

    Does anyone know what sort of journal would publish papers on traffic flow dynamics? It could come under so many things; psychology, transport, geography, civil engineering, fluid dynamics, computer simulations, etc etc 

    There's one subject-specific journal with the amazingly creative title of "Transportation", ISSN 0049-4488. Otherwise they tend to be published in applied mathematics, applied physics, and psychology journals.

     

    You are scary. 



  • @Jetts said:

    @Sunstorm said:

    I'm amused by Wikipedia's page on Road rage (which I got to by following the wikitrail). Apparently, one of the common manifestations involves...

    suddenly jamming the parking brake and sliding into a telephone pole to scare other motorists
    .

    Does this really happen that often?


     

    I often get the urge to crash my car into annoying drivers or to let them change lanes right into me or something, but crashing into roadside lighting has never seemed like good revenge on stupid drivers around me.

    Jetts, dude, you and I have a very close mutual friend who once intentionally totaled a car by ramming it into a tree in the front yard of his ex-girlfiend, whom he knew had her new boyfriend over at the time. 

    And now you know exactly whom that is because there's only really one close friend we have in common who would ever be that crazy.  heh. 



  • You have to resign yourself to the fact that in the DC Metro, you will be driving in close formation at 70+ MPH even in residential areas, but you must keep your foot near the brake, because you will be stopping at least once in your journey for no discernible reason, twice or more for entirely avoidable ones, and at least thrice for poorly planned at-grade intersections placed right after cloverleaf interchanges.



  • @shadowman said:

    @bstorer said:

    If you drive enough in the DC area, you learn that the other drivers stop randomly for a seemingly endless list of reasons: construction, rain, snow, a gust of wind, a fender-bender on the other loop of the Beltway, a sign about smoke detectors, boredom, stupidity, &c.

    Gah.  This pisses me off daily; an accident on the other side of the highway somehow is jamming up my side.  Christ people, don't stop and look, haven't you ever seen an accident before?  Get moving!  You can probably find the same or even much worse accidents on youtube when you get home if it's that interesting!

    Seriously though, I think the problem is with that much volume, just one or two people will slam on the brakes when they initially see an accident on the other side of the highway, and that's enough to cause an hour or two of slowdown and jams.

    Even worse...when a cop pulls somebody over and it drags traffic from 40 mph down to 2 mph. I wonder how somebody gets pulled over in medium traffic anyway, but WTF do people slow down when they see somebody pulled over? Like that cop is gonna run back, get in his car, and gun it for you? 



  • DC is not alone with the shitty traffic.  Richmond's "Red doesn't mean stop for the first 10 seconds," was almost as bad as Houston's "it's OK to turn right from the left lane when there's a bike going straight through the right lane" and "even though there's a crosswalk with big flashing yellow signs, it's totally that pedestrians fault for walking across the street while you were trying to blow through the roundabout at 700 miles an hour and turn out of it without bothering to signal."  Seriously, who the fark decided to put a roundabout in the US anyhow?

    P.S. Make sure you drive by that same roundabout in the middle of the night and honk your horn really
    loud since the guy you pissed off earlier also sleeps in an apartment
    right next to it.
     



  • @real_username_witheld said:

    ... and "even though there's a crosswalk with big flashing yellow signs, it's totally that pedestrians fault for walking across the street while you were trying to blow through the roundabout at 700 miles an hour and turn out of it without bothering to signal."

    Yeah.  Yesterday I was crossing the street and got angry glares because I was thoughtlessly impeding some fine gentleman's running of a stop sign to fly around the corner and floor it at a shopping center. 



  • @real_username_witheld said:

    DC is not alone with the shitty traffic.

    No, but I think we've made major contributions to the field.  I could write 10,000 words on how stupid the setup is here.  But this will have to suffice: if you were to turn on the local morning news, you would discover that two things are covered above all others: traffic and weather.  Seriously.  Every ten minutes, they go over the traffic and weather.  In addition, the crawl at the bottom of the screen will also have the traffic and weather.  For example, my wife turns on channel 9, our CBS affiliate, every morning.  On this channel, the meteorologist sits at the desk with the anchors.  And the traffic reports are given by the anchors in between discussions of local murders and the presidential campaign.  I kid you not.  Some stations don't even have sports reporters on their morning news.  Commercials brag about their new instant Doppler radar systems and traffic helicopters.  This area is mentally diseased, I tell you!



  • @bstorer said:

    @real_username_witheld said:

    DC is not alone with the shitty traffic.

    No, but I think we've made major contributions to the field.  I could write 10,000 words on how stupid the setup is here.  But this will have to suffice: if you were to turn on the local morning news, you would discover that two things are covered above all others: traffic and weather.  Seriously.  Every ten minutes, they go over the traffic and weather.  In addition, the crawl at the bottom of the screen will also have the traffic and weather.  For example, my wife turns on channel 9, our CBS affiliate, every morning.  On this channel, the meteorologist sits at the desk with the anchors.  And the traffic reports are given by the anchors in between discussions of local murders and the presidential campaign.  I kid you not.  Some stations don't even have sports reporters on their morning news.  Commercials brag about their new instant Doppler radar systems and traffic helicopters.  This area is mentally diseased, I tell you!

    It does sound like you're all completely insane. My solution is to put you all behind the wheel of assorted cars and let you kill each other. 



  • @bstorer said:

    if you were to turn on the local morning news, you would discover that two things are covered above all others: traffic and weather.  Seriously.  Every ten minutes, they go over the traffic and weather.  In addition, the crawl at the bottom of the screen will also have the traffic and weather.  For example, my wife turns on channel 9, our CBS affiliate, every morning.  On this channel, the meteorologist sits at the desk with the anchors.  And the traffic reports are given by the anchors in between discussions of local murders and the presidential campaign.  I kid you not.  Some stations don't even have sports reporters on their morning news.  Commercials brag about their new instant Doppler radar systems and traffic helicopters.

     

    The worst part of it is that I'm from the DC area (Maryland, to be specific) and none of that seems even vaguely unusual to me.  I guess it's what you're used to... 


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