Those of you who follow me on Twitter will know I see a lot of motorists blocking intersections, including pedestrian crossings.
Here’s road regulation 128:
A driver must not enter an intersection if the driver cannot drive through the intersection because the intersection, or a road beyond the intersection, is blocked.
Penalty: 3 penalty units.
At the time of writing, a penalty unit is $155.46, so this is a fine of $466.
A separate regulation, 59, talks about where vehicles coming to a red light must stop:
(1) If traffic lights at an intersection or marked foot crossing are showing a red traffic light, a driver must not enter the intersection or marked foot crossing.
Penalty: In the case of a natural person, 10 penalty units; In the case of a body corporate, 120 penalty units.
(A similar rule applies to entering the “bicycle storage area”.)
So, the rules are pretty clear.
But it happens all the time in the city centre, and there’s no visible policing of it.
Of course, in a lot of cases, the errant vehicle(s) will end up blocking other traffic, including private vehicles, freight and public transport.
Note: The above instances are all from the last fortnight.
You would think that in the city centre, drivers would be more conscious of not blocking intersections, since the chances of traffic congestion are much higher.
You’d also think that given the huge number of pedestrians (the area is dominated by public transport and pedestrians, far exceeding motorists), authorities would put more care into ensuring that vehicles don’t encroach on pedestrian space, for safety if nothing else.
Nope. No visible enforcement. Not even — as many of these photos are — in the middle of the legal precinct.
— Michael Bell (@Xtrackka) November 28, 2016
Even while police are on the scene practicing traffic direction or watching for jaywalkers, they ignore vehicles blocking crossings.
If you jaywalked in front of Police on point duty, you'd expect a fine. But block the crossing like this? Nothing. pic.twitter.com/wDobBcPohg
— Daniel Bowen (@danielbowen) October 3, 2016
Along with motorcycles parking in pedestrian spaces, and advertising and vehicles blocking footpaths, this is one of my pet hates. And the common theme is that pedestrian space is being constantly encroached upon, and almost nobody cares.
And how is it that the excesses of people in their metal boxes are condoned, while those walking around on their own two feet are marginalised?