Bob Haase’s Another Can of Worms

Road Signs … What Do They Really Mean?

There are many important things that we should be concerned about in life, but it is often the little things that tend to bug us.  As an example there are three traffic lanes that a person could take as they go from Kwik Trip past Menards on highway 23 west.  The left lane is for people that want to make left hand turns to the businesses on the left side of highway 23 as you are heading west. The center lane is for the thru traffic heading west toward Rosendale.  The right lane is for the people wanting to make a right hand turn to Menards and the businesses on the right side of the road.

You might wonder how I figured this out because most people don’t see it the same way I do and use the left turn lane as the thru lane.  The problem with this is that they wait until the left lane ends and expect the cars in the thru “center” lane to let them in.  I know this because I am constantly slowing or stopping to let them in. Another problem is that they might be way behind you in the left lane but they speed up to get in front of you just where their lane ends.

If people would read this sign saying “Left Lane Ends” they would know that the left lane ends.  It should give people a hint that this is not the thru lane.

(Photo source: hint that the left lane ends is this sign showing graphically that the left lane ends and merges to the right.  Both of these signs are there but I wonder how many people read them.

I would estimate that close to 90 percent of the traffic stays in the left lane and merges at the end where they have no other choice than to cut the person in the center lane off. It seems like in most places they put yellow diagonal lines on the pavement to also show that the lane ends.  If that was done at the end of the left lane it might also help people to merge before the very end.

Now that I ranted about one of the little things that bugs me just about every time I go home, I would like to make some suggestions to try to correct the problem.  At the intersection of highway 23 and Rolling Meadows Drive heading west put an overhead sign showing three lanes and labeling them appropriately.  The left lane would be labeled left turn lane, the center lane would be labeled the thru lane, and the right lane would be labeled the right turn lane.  In light of all the problems we have in the world this is not all that important so if I am reading the signs wrong let me know.  

Bob Haase is the host of “Outdoors Thursday” heard Thursday mornings at 9:10 a.m. on News-Talk 1450 KFIZ.