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l,ltoca,r EDrroB Maurlce A. Smith o.r.c. EPORTA EDITOR PCTET GATNIET aaatsTANT EolToBa Leonard A. Ayton, Ronald Barker rtrDLANo EDrroR Edward Eves aBT EDTTOn Howard VYse

27 MARCH 1964

MANAoTNo plFEoroR H. N. Priaulx m.a.e.

False Economies 1. f OV often " essential' things " we cannot afford l-l to do iust now " have to be tackled a little later ,L I o", *J"ot., great deal more. How often also ie the saving of public uloney given as an excuse for doing nottring or doing something the wroqg way' Our .m"rt apply aU too broadly but we have in mind here the roads and road building.

A great Erany exanples could be given even under tUis quite na$ow headiDg but we wail to refer again to oni subiect in panicular, tbe unnecessary disrupdon of tra6c caused by road repairs and improvement schemes.

Pipe laying, bridgc widening aad roundabout making schemes otteo tat. months to complete in England but would be finished u'ithin weeks in some other countries' If one asks whn the answer aLnost every time is cost' !7e, presumably meaning the people, caninot afford to keep men working late or at weekends. But no-one r""fot to considei the cost--also to us---'of mile-long gueues of waiting vehicles day after day wbile the work plods on. How many other important jobs are being held up by late arrival of people and goods? How rnroy

"ep"at orders are lost to companies through late deliveries?

Bodies like the British Road Federation could quickly provide realistic figures shor*'ing the cost of the time iost by men and machines in unnecessary uafrc jams caused by prolonged road works. One or tvro conscientious but unimaginative men in local council offices decide that a job can be done most economically for them by ten merr in ten weeks. Is this the important issue? Ougbt it not to be completed by many more men in one or two weeks, tlus saving the community perhaps tl00,0OO worth of idle man aad machine :me?

There is more than money concerned herc too. The mass motoring period is coming around again; each weekend the roads will be so full that the smallest interruption of flow will lead to miles of iamming and fru$ration. It is well koown that frustration and detay lead to ill-humour, inconsiderate driviug and accidcnts. It is no good saying that they should not; htrnran oature is such that they do.

To save money and for want of proper consideration of what is involved, nearly every road repair site is abandoned as it srands carly on Friday afternoon and left idle until Monday morning. As often as not an automatic colour light signal is switched on to " control " raffc. IVe have all seerr what happens: you have your one minute green for one line of traffic, 20 secords pr,rs" ot red both ways, then one minute green for the other line. The fact that 2,000 vehicles an hour wish to drive one \ ray in the moroing and l0 the other and that by the evening the$e flows have been reversed are " no concern " of the men who " planned " the road work programme and the timing of the lamps. 'Ve carurot afford a num to operate the signals to suit the tra.frc."

In many cases one hour's careful clearing up of the site before knocking off on a Friday would avoid the need for single lines and rafrc sicnrls throughout the weekend, As we have suggestd before, such matters as these ought to be takea up by a combined committee of the motoring organizations.

COTTEilTS

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