Go-slow Britain

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Of course child safety on our roads is rightly the concern of the Government. The risks are increased when youngsters have to cross roads without grown-ups’ help or a lollipop lady to steer them. So there are suggestions that drivers should go more slowly past school areas and in blinkered city streets. No way can one side against that. But the thought occurs that 15mph, even 20, is quite a crawl and that, if to exceed such a pace became illegal in these places, we might be encouraged to glue our eyes, or one of them, to our speedometers, instead of keeping a continual watch along the pavements for hovering pedestrians, whether so young that they should not be trying to cross a road alone, so old that the same might apply or those of any age addicted to carelessness. In that case, the hope of fewer being bowled-over might unfortunately be cancelled out?

As you get older you worry more. For instance, when I drive ten miles to the nearest main post office with these gems of non-wisdom, it will worry me to read that the next collection will be made at 3.01pm. Do they really wait a full minute after three o’clock, before opening the mailbox? In the same way it troubles me that if we have ever-lower speed limits and more of them, traffic in this country will join the national economy in adopting a disastrous go-slow. If lives are thereby saved, well and good. However, if parking (free) in narrow streets were prohibited, more public car-parks provided, and ‘buses discouraged from stopping at dangerous blind-spots to set down or pick up passengers, the same laudable end might be accelerated?

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