Thursday, June 26, 2003

You can't escape the cones

Everywhere I go there are construction cones in the road. On the freeway, on the business roads on the way to work, on the road right by my house in the residential section - you can't escape the cones.

One theory is that they don't have any cone storage, there is no such thing. Once they are done with them in one spot they move them to another spot or just throw them around in random places. But it's not like there is some cone warehouse that the construction companies have.

I find it really annoying, though, when a whole lane is blocked off and there is no reason for the cones to be there. Take a look at the picture I attached as an example. This was taken about a block or two from Banta. They totally blocked off the lane and made everyone carefully drive on the shoulder to continue down the road ... but there was no sign of construction or painting! They just threw cones right in the middle of the road.

Rachel, Jason, and I came up with a theory that the cones help pay for future construction. Allow me to explain: Once some contruction is done, they take the available cones and mark off a lane at the next place they are going to work. Once they put them up, suddenly the speed limit drops and the speeding ticket fines double. They leave the cones there for about 6 months before they even touch the road until they have enough money to fix it. Then, when they're done, they move them to the next spot where they might work to see if they can get enough money to fix it.

There have been many times where I just want to pull over, get out of the car, and chuck the cones off the road. I wonder what the penalty is if you get caught doing that. Do they have a name for that? Assault and battery of cone? Cone purjury? Cone ad seriatim? Cone compensation act? Cone emancipation?

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