Monday, April 02, 2012

Violating A Cardinal Rule Of Motorcycling

One of the cardinal rules of motorcycling is that the bike will automatically veer where you look with your eyes and that’s just one of many reasons that new temporary regulations permitting clear cutting need further study.

Let me show you an example on the Durham Freeway where a South Carolina-based billboard company has already marked trees in anticipation of being able to clear cut a grove of large trees even though the sign has plenty of visibility now.

  • As you can see from the first image in this blog or by clicking here, the billboard is already clearly visible to travelers on the Durham Freeway.  But the owner wants to clear cut the forest to the right anyway.


  • As shown in the second image or by clicking here, these publically owned trees are sizable, and


  • Cutting them opens the Freeway view to an unsightly parking lot, an abandoned building and storage items as seen in the third image or by clicking here.


  • The goal of the gratuitous cutting is to draw the attention of travelers on the entrance ramp to the right at just the moment they should be solely focused on merging into traffic to the left and onto the freeway as illustrated by the fourth image or by clicking here.

That will be especially hazardous to motorcyclists like me who could inadvertently veer into the guardrail on the right if they happen to glance at the billboard.

But any automobile driver whose attention is diverted to the right when full attention should be left will veer the wrong direction at a critical time, thereby endangering himself as well as drivers already on the freeway.

It is an insult to hide behind hasty regulations by the state in a blatant effort to trample on and override local values by clear cutting publicly-owned trees, but it is criminal to deliberately mess with public safety.

To help reclaim North Carolina’s scenic character, email and click here to “like” Scenic NC’s new Facebook page.

(Visuals courtesy of Dale McKeel, a recognized expert on the adverse impacts of outdoor billboards.)

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