Letter to the editor

I can understand the decision of the ministry of transportation to not add a turning lane at the transfer station. The issue can be solved much cheaper and easier than with a bunch of asphalt:

A little patience.

I do understand the pressure that people who would like to turn off the highway feel. All too often I am being tailgated in this 90km/h area, mostly by drivers from out of town. I believe that one of the reasons for this is the absence of more speed limit signs: there is only one sign announcing the 90km/h zone. While one can argue legally that that is enough to declare the speed limit, I would argue that many highway users will quickly assume that normal highway speed can be resumed because they are now “out of town”. And out of town 100km/h is usually resumed.

A way to mitigate this would be the relatively cheap installation of a few more speed signs letting “out of towners” know that there is a continual 90km/h zone all the way to the crossing at Abernathy’s.
Unfortunately, impatience is all too common when somebody turns off a highway. To solve this I personally pull over onto the shoulder and let vehicles behind me pass before I turn (left or right) in an area of elevated highway speeds. It is just so much safer – and honestly, I am already at my destination so why be in a rush? Waiting a few seconds to let others pass is no inconvenience, it’s literally “street smarts”.

While on the issue of highways speed, I have recently calculated how much money it really costs to break the speed limit:

If you are driving at a speed of 120km/h instead of the posted 100km/h, a modern F-150 with 3.5L engine uses about 13 liters of fuel instead of 9.8 liters. You can calculate what you spend on additional fuel and compare that to the time you arrive early at your destination. The result is roughly $27 for each hour that you save. If you drive 25.000km per year, this adds up to $1000!

I just gave you a free $1000. Just for learning to keep the speed limit. Go buy yourself something nice. You deserve it.

Of course, $27/hour reflects only the direct financial cost. You can also save yourself the stress of straining your eyes, shoulders and nerves, the increased risk of an accident, the additional wear and tear on the vehicle and, yes, the speeding ticket, which (oh dare I say it) you deserve for having broken the law. A shout out at this point to the brave and often under-appreciated people of CVSE and RCMP: thank you for your service of keeping the highways safe.

Tim Haus
Dunster, BC