All those with an interest in the on going debate regarding traffic and accidents on Kommetjie are invited to a public meeting on July 7th. The meeting will take place in the Fish Hoek Civic Centre and will start at 7pm.
Apparently there will be a number of public officials present who should be able to present their ideas and plans for Kommetjie Road, and hopefully are open to sensible solutions from residents. Hopefully the residents are as willing to hear what the officials have to say.
The road is dangerous and something needs to be done, however, the residents of the area (myself included) need to realise that traffic calming is not the only answer, and probably the least likely to happen. Is it my imagination, or is the increased publicity seeing an increase in the number of sensible drivers on the road? Of coarse there are still plenty of nutters tearing up and down, but it is through the majority showing minority that we do not find their behaviour acceptable that habits will change: law enforcement can take care of the stubborn few.
It is easy for us to blame taxi drivers, and whilst they do contribute their own kind of crazy to the situation they are not on their own. Nor is Kommetjie Road the only place that lunacy occurs. Today I saw a well dressed gent (ok, drop the PC Russell, he was a white, middle aged business man) tore down 17th Avenue past False Bay hospital in a new Mercedes C series, so fast that he nearly took off on a bump in the road, and he was still accelerating. He had to break so hard for the stop street that he went into a skid (this in a car with one of the most advanced breaking systems in history). Although he slowed at the stop street he did not halt, and then tore off down Kendal Road like a jet fighter and was probably over 100kph before he got to the circle at the bottom. Why? Why, Why, Why!!! His chances of reacting to something happening in front of him, such as a child running out into the road, would be nil- one dead child.
With selfishness like that on our roads it seems pointless to do anything to try and improve them, because all that will happen is a) the idiots will find a new way to break the traffic laws for the sake of a few seconds, and/or b) it will move the problem somewhere else.
One thing that I would like to see immediately is to change the language here: instead of talking about calming traffic I would like to change the language to making pedestrians and other road users safe, because it is invariable pedestrians and cyclists who are most at risk, not car drivers- they are cocooned in a metal shell, requiring a sizable impact to cause any series damage. Cars can be replaced, lives cannot.
Anyway, hopefully all stake holders will turn up, and the meeting can be constructive and not a slug out, with outraged residents in one corner and overly defensive political officials in the other; though I fear the worst as the community is spitting venom and the politicians are squaring up to the indignation and trying to defend their positions. Fingers crossed, or at least lets hope my video camera can capture the fireworks and make me millions on YouTube- “fur flying at local council meeting” could go viral you know.