Friday, December 15, 2006

You'd Better Run!

Have you ever wondered why it's so difficult to get across the street before the "WALK" signal changes to "DON'T WALK"? Well, check out this excerpt from a nationally-recognized traffic manual:

"An average walking speed of 40-ft/s is appropriate for typical groups of pedestrians. . . .At signalized intersections pedestrian crossings must be assigned an amount of effective green time based on average walking speed."

Now, a speed of 40 feet per second is approximately equivalent to 27.3 miles per hour. Do you run across the street at 27 mph? I didn't think so!

OK, OK, it's an error. It's supposed to say 4 feet per second, and the error has been noted by the publisher. But next time I see a fast signal, I'm going to wonder. . .