If you’re a driver, be it a car, lorry, taxi, etc., you know that one of the most frustrating aspects of driving in heavy traffic; being stuck in traffic is the worst. And for many of us, our daily commutes put us in the thick of the traffic sometimes twice a day, one when going to work, and once again on our way home.
Traffic on the motorways can be cumbersome and slow going, but in the city centres and towns it can be a real headache due to pedestrians, traffic lights, road works, accidents, etc., it can take treble the time to get from one point to the next.
In America, they have worked on one way to try an alleviate heavy traffic on the motorways by introducing HOV lanes, or high occupancy vehicle lanes. These are specially marked and timed lanes to be used by vehicles that carry two or more people in some instances three or more people. Only cars with the required occupancy can drive in these lanes at times posted, which usually are the peak hours in the morning and evening.
Interestingly enough there are those that will drive in the lanes during those restricted hours without the number of passengers required, in which they can be stopped and fined.
In Liverpool, they are removing the bus lanes and bus lane restrictions to try and improve the flow of traffic through the city. As this was just recently done, we will need to wait and see if it helps. One little test done by timing commutes on a bus, and a delivery driver found the bus commuter’s journey taking a few minutes longer, but the delivery person was enjoying the lifting of the lane restrictions as they could get around easier.
Another novel way one city is looking to reduce traffic is the use of a driverless car or pod scheme.
In 1963 the idea of a driverless car was introduced. However, technology now has made the concept much more of a reality. You could read the paper, watch something on your tablet, etc., all while being safely driven to your destination.
In California, Google has been working with driverless cars and racked up over 400, 000 miles without a significant accident.
So it appears that the ideas of the past are soon becoming the realities of the present and future.