Thursday, August 11, 2011

police traffic operation at 3rd & Rhode Island Avenue NW

See this 08/11/2011 message from a resident of Rhode Island Avenue NW -- sent to ANC 5C04 Commissioner John Salatti (and me).

Have you been getting complaints about the police ticketing operation that`s been going on several mornings this week and last at 3rd and Rhode Island Ave NW? In an attempt to discourage ``blocking the box,`` which is often a problem at that intersection, officers are ticketing drivers who fail to clear the intersection. But in flagging down and pulling over cars, they`re blocking entire lanes of rush-hour traffic and causing more problems than they are solving. I saw one accident this morning that appeared to have been a result of the chaos.

I complained this morning to the 3rd District commander`s office (admin Sgt Gregory), where I was referred by one of the three officers doing the ticketing.

You have been so successful at getting responses from MPD that I wanted to let you know as well.

Also cc`ing Scott Roberts so he can warn our neighbors in vehicles about the entrapment (and $100 tickets) that`s going on at 3rd and Rhode Island NW.


Jeremy said...

I fully support MDP's actions in ticketing motorists that continue to block traffic at 3rd and Rhode Island.

I regularly commute to work via the G2 and that bus was constantly getting delayed because of motorists blatant disregard for those around them and blocking not only the bus but other vehicles that wait their trun to cross Rhode Island Ave.

If motorists didn't "block the box" there wouldn't be lanes blocked.

SO - as soon as the "blocking of the box" is stopped - traffic will return to normal. And commuters can have their 3 lanes of traffic which I think is overkill - but that's a story for a different time.

Jeremy said...

Also, it's not entrapment - it's a ticketing/enforcement operation. MPD is not luring motorists into the box and then giving them tickets.

They are also directing vehicles into open lanes at the same time - BTW.

Brett said...

I agree completely with Jeremy - Getting across that intersection on foot can be treacherous at best when you have a green light, if you can even get through cars that block the crosswalk and the intersection itself. It's especially disheartening to watch the G8 bus drive off as you try to climb over somebody's hood. It's no mystery that west-bound traffic doesn't move very quickly at that intersection in the morning; it shouldn't be so challenging to stop somewhere that's not blocking the middle of the intersection or crosswalk. Hey MPD, "entrap" away...

Tortuga said...

Yes, not entrapment. Many commuters just don't know how to drive, and anyone trying travel from 3rd to RI gets screwed.

I personally don't think $100 is a big enough fine.

Oddly enough, I've been commuting for seven years in this area, and people only started badly blocking the box in the past 12 months. I wonder what's changed.

AP said...

I agree with the previous commenters. I ride the G2 bus daily and it is always a nightmare getting across Rhode Island Avenue because of the cars that constantly block the intersection! Sometimes the bus has to wait for the light to cycle three or four times before we can get across.

MPD should continue to ticket as much as possible. If you are a responsible driver and don't break the law then you shouldn't have to worry about getting a ticket! This is NOT entrapment.

Anonymous said...

Sure that intersection sucks, but the police operations make it much worse. We were stopped in traffic, not blocking the box (which is a huge pet peeve of mine), marveling at the stupidity of the police operation during morning rush hour when my wife got a ticket because I wasn't wearing a seat belt. Damn! (I always wear my belt, but had just been rooting around in the back seat, so they got me fair and square). So we got to pull over and obstruct traffic even more while they issued us our ticket. Bang up job MPD!