Havoc from One Broken Stoplight

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Today on our early morning commute, it seemed like it was taking forever to get out of our street.  We sat and sat while traffic was at a standstill.   Drivers were getting impatient, honking at each other.   Then someone rear ended the car in front, from accelerating too fast before the traffic line inched along.   This caused even more problems.  We could not even tell what was causing it until we finally got past the gridlock just to get out of our side street.  Turns out the main intersection that leads to the freeway had a broken stoplight.

I got to thinking  “Look what happens with just one broken light!”  If one stoplight could cause this much trouble getting out of our street, imagine what it might be like if the electric grid somehow fails and all the traffic lights stop working.  Pandemonium would reign all over the place.   By then it would be too late to drive out of the area, we would have to stay in our home until things calmed down some.  If there were advance warning, you would have to be “ahead of the pack” to be able to get out.    But if there were none, the only choices would be to “shelter in place” temporarily or leave town on a bicycle or on foot.

Observe what happens around you when minor things like a broken traffic light happens, this gives you a hint of what can occur.  I can already tell being in the city would be quite unpleasant if things were to fall apart.

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  1. You’re completely right. Where we are is on the border from one town to another, and the main road less than 5 min from our apartment. We are within sight of the on ramp to the highway, and every time the highway has an issue, our street backs up pretty quickly. so I know exactly what you’re talking about. I think the best thing would be to stay put for a while, but that depends on the nature of the emergency. Flood, don’t stay put. Power failure, sit tight. Depending of course on the season.
    While I’m thinking about it, have you ever done a post on apartment “bug in” in the winter?

    1. I don’t think we’ve ever had to bug in during the winter, so I’ve not written about it. Winters are considered mild here in SE Texas, the lowest temp I’ve seen being around the 30s. We have bugged in due to hurricanes. Good post idea though. Thanks!

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