Why pylons won’t stop dive bombers: Roadshow

Q: Why can’t Caltrans install more plastic pylons to discourage dive bombers from the havoc they create?

Dolores Hayes, Livermore

A: Here’s why: The only way to prevent people from cutting over from the left lane at the last minute would be to install a concrete barrier.

This is not feasible in most places because it needs a considerable amount of additional width for shoulder and clearance space. And even if the right of way were available, it’s very likely dive bombers would simply move their dive=-bombing ways upstream from the barrier.

As for plastic pylons, they can be useful to provide extra guidance for drivers, but they do not block movement. Most drivers are aware, or quickly learn, that they can drive over pylons.

The bottom line, unfortunately, is that there is not much that Caltrans can do to improve problems caused by drive bombers.

Q: I would like to compliment the authorities for doing an excellent paving job on Hillcrest Avenue in Antioch. Now, it is easily the best road around. It’s very smooth and a pleasure to drive on. Can we look forward to all roads in Antioch reaching the same level of perfection?

Deepak Varma

A: More pavement perfection, as you have experienced it, will be coming to Antioch soon, paid for by local and state taxes.

Q: Why we are still producing so many vehicles that are behemoths, and way overpowered?

It’s a big problem, given climate change and all the associated problems that contribute to it, starting with oil production and vehicle pollution.

In addition, there’s all the yearly death and destruction these vehicles cause. No one needs 300 to 400 hp to go to work/school/shopping, or to go zero to 60 in under four seconds. Only heavily laden trucks need this much power for their big loads. With the maximum speed limit in California at 70 mph, why do we need cars that go faster?

It will probably take a mandate from our legislators to bring about sane driving and vehicles in our country. It seems like the electric cars everyone is touting are too fast, also. What’s this need for speed really about?

Bruce Krutel, El Granada

A: Americans are in love with big, fast vehicles, and part of the reason why is that advertising has promoted, and increased this inclination. I don’t think this will change, at least not in the short-term. Many people think that bigger vehicles are safer, but this is not always the case.

Join Gary Richards for an hourlong chat noon Wednesday at www.mercurynews.com/live-chats. Look for Gary Richards at Facebook.com/mr.roadshow, or contact him at mrroadshow@bayareanewsgroup.com or 408-920-5335.

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Author: Gary Richards

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