Sunday, August 17, 2003

Police pull off traffic miracle

I got to drive like the British today.

On my way to work, traffic was stopped on I-459 east-bound into Birmingham, just a short distance from exit 10. An 18-wheeler had gone off the road in the heavy morning fog and was splayed sideways. There might have been more going on, but I couldn't see. I sat in parked traffic for 40 minutes, very glad that Misty had left a copy of the Black & White in my car. A lot of people got out of their vehicles to chat with fellow commuters and to gawk at whatever was going on up ahead.

Eventually, some people started making bold maneuvers — particularly, turning their cars around and driving the wrong direction down the emergency lane. At first, I thought they were crazy, but as it turned out, the police were actually orcestrating this reverse production. Eventually, they managed to get everyone turned around and headed the other way. It must have looked bizarre to the drivers in the west-bound lanes of 459, seeing us driving down the wrong side of the highway. My compliments to the police who managed to pull this off. The situation could have turned out a lot worse.

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