Don't 'block the box,' city urges drivers
With city streets already tied up by road construction, Baltimore officials are urging drivers to avoid blocking intersections in a way that can cause gridlock.
"It warned that "blocking the box" is a traffic violation that can lead to a $70 fine. "The Department of Transportation is asking motorists who stop for a red light or a traffic delay to keep their vehicles behind the stop bar so that the intersection remains clear for pedestrians and cross traffic. Drivers should proceed through the intersection only when they see that its clear on the other side," Transportation Department spokeswoman Kathy Chopper said.
Even though the natural raction may be to simply growl at city transportation officials as a result of the congestion plaguing downtown, this is a worthy admonition. Those of us who travel downtown can testify that far to many motorists charge into intersections before they are clear, achieving little for themselves while raising the hassle level of everybody else.
This is City Driving 101, but it doesn't seem to be covered in every driver's ed course. And because many parents don't every take their kids into the city when they're learning to drive, many young drivers have no idea how to deal with congested city streets.