Hey Amarillo, Let’s Talk Driving. Do You Know How To?
So I've been in Amarillo for a year now, so I feel like I can finally speak out on this topic.
The driving here in the city is, well...
How do I put this nicely, terrible?
I've lived in a lot of places and seen all sorts of different drivers. The traffic itself here is some of the best I've dealt with, I never seem to be in it. However, I feel like I'd trade a few things and take traffic back.
STOP VS. YIELD
Let's start here, shall we? One thing I'd never seen before moving here was the yield sign on the frontage roads. Truthfully I think it's s GREAT idea. It keeps traffic flowing very well with cars coming off the highway, and it doesn't jam up the frontage road. Great concept...
Only when it's used properly though. See, a yield is essentially a stop sign if there is traffic coming. If you're even with a car coming off the off ramp, you are supposed to stop. I've noticed a lot of people like to slow down about 5 MPH and call that a "yield". I'm sorry, but you'd be incorrect. Some of the lights in the city come up QUICK off that ramp, and I need to get over two lanes quickly. If you only drop down about 5 MPH, I can't get to where I need to be. Utilize these properly and watch how well they work.
STOPPING ON THE ON RAMP
What in tarnation is THAT all about? The whole point of an on ramp is to get UP to speed. This isn't an F1 race, there are no standing starts here. You should steadily continue to climb up that speedometer to get yourself on the highway. Who should slow down or move? That's right, the cars already traveling on the highway.
Here's the thing, there are others getting on the highway behind you. If you decide to slow down and stop on that ramp, what happens? Yup, you get someone else's nose in your rear end. Pretty uncomfortable if you ask me. Please start speeding up and not slowing down on the on ramp, I don't feel like finding out how good (or bad) your insurance is.
Ok, so this one is kind of two part. I've noticed that there seem to be a TON of red light runners in this city. It's never a speed up to get through it kind of job either, it tends to be staying the speed limit and casually rolling through 2-3 seconds after the light had turned red. I used to think to myself, "are you even paying attention"?
Then it started to dawn on me...it's the TIMING of the lights in the city that causes it. Ok, maybe that's not the ONLY reason, but it is a big reason I think. The lights are not anywhere close to in sync with one another here. Downtown seems to have it nailed down in most spots, but that's it. Every other light in the city is so far off that you are constantly stopping, even if you're going the speed limit. If the timing would improve, so would the red light running...I think.
I could go on and on truthfully, but we'll stop at three because those are the big ones. Can we be better?