Letters to the Editor

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SR 16: The ultimate fix is a little Darwinian

Letter by A. Patrick Walsh, Tacoma on Aug. 16, 2011 at 3:38 pm | 29 Comments »
August 16, 2011 3:38 pm


I’ve read with interest and much chagrin the opining of drivers about the eastbound state Route 16 Sprague Avenue exit. The photo accompanying a recent News Tribune article about the exit speaks volumes about “the real problem.” It’s The Skid Marks Stupid! Ironically, it’s doubtful those people leaving the skid marks learned anything from their harrowing experiences.

While I agree with the writer who said that it’s impossible to “moron proof” the exit, his letter stopped short of suggesting “the ultimate fix.”

Those drivers and their ilk who immediately christened the SR 16 exit with their skid marks are probably the same drivers who insist on testing the limits of the newly designed westbound SR 16 exit from I-5. There are no exit speed limit signs, flashing lights, rumble strips, etc. So these same drivers must feel entitled to exit at their hair-raising 65 to 80 mph into the heavy westbound SR 16 traffic. They then terrorize us on Tacoma streets; I regularly witness vehicle speeds reaching 60 mph down North Pearl Street.

I suggest that the state Department of Transportation simply remove three of the marked-up SR 16 jersey barriers and let nature take its course. It would quickly and efficiently thin out the herd and clean out the shallow end of the gene pool of dysfunctional, self-absorbed, texters or cell phone-distracted drivers.

Just think of it: There would be no collateral damage other than to their own vehicles and to themselves. Problem solved through a little discreet social engineering!

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