TOTAL MESSED UP Traffic Police LED Boards are TOTAL WASTE OF MONEY?
Mangaluru: A few years ago, after District Administration and Mangaluru City Traffic police had installed brand new signal lights, which within few days stopped working; then the traffic police had erected a bunch of traffic rules signboards, which have been ignored and abused by motorists, following the failure of that, in August 2018, they came up with yet another idea by installing LED boards at a couple of prominent locations in the City, like one near Dr Ambedkar/Jyothi Circle, near KPT Junction and at Nanthoor Junction, to alert motorists about traffic jam/snarls, and also awareness slogans on traffic safety and environment. But how far these LED boards with flashing messages have been helpful to motorists, while they are driving or riding, the answer has been “NOT USEFUL AT ALL”, from the majority of the motorists. And they are absolutely RIGHT!
And also we have seen in the past, once something breaks down/not working, it will be a long time before it is fixed or NOT fixed at ALL? And the same has been with these LED boards, where in the last three years they have malfunctioned, out-of-service quite a few times, and even today you can see quite a few problems, including no proper information and not being updated with the current info. You will see the same messages/alerts every single day, with no changes whatsoever. But anyways, City police authorities have an illuminating answer to frustrating traffic snarls in this growing educational coastal hub, where medium size roadside LED boards that will display real-time updates about congestion ahead and suggest alternative routes had been installed at a couple of places in the City. Called Variable Messaging System (VMS), these boards are placed at certain locations near congestion-prone crossroads, and before roads that record large traffic volumes, which defeat their primary purpose of reducing jams.
No 1 OUTDATED! The New Emergency Number to call is 112, and NOT the above Numbers?
No 2 You See the Same Messages on Every Single Day, with no Changes?
With the bright flashing display on these LED boards, they will be hard to miss since they are in pretty good size. Text messages in red will alert commuters about congestion; those in green will suggest a jam-free detour that the motorists can take. But as per a police officer, the boards are installed in spots where congestion is least likely to happen even if a motorist slows down to read the overhead message. In the case of normal traffic, the boards will say so. The VMS was part of the long-pending integrated traffic management system that has been pending for so many years. But these LED alert boards have not been effective at all, as per many motorists. How do you expect a four-wheeler driver to follow the flashing messages on these boards, while behind the steering wheel? Only pedestrians or two-wheeler riders (after pulling over to the side of the road ) are able to follow the messages. Even though this new concept of LED board is one more appendage to beat a jam, it is not a lasting solution to curb snarls which clog roads and bring traffic to a crawl.
No 3 No Current Time/Messages UPDATED to support the Display
No 4 Black Patches blocking the clear view of messages on the display
No 5 Print so Blur & Tiny, Can’t even read from a short distance
Finally, I want to ask the person or persons behind this LED board idea to alert motorists on traffic rules and road jams, is that do they expect a driver or a rider to stop and read the messages on these LED boards, if not how are they going to read all the awareness messages etc that are displayed randomly. Not a “Smart Idea” for a “Smart City”? Period! The best thing for a City like Mangaluru, where motorists don’t give heed/damn for all these new systems, it is better to hire more police officers and constables who would control the traffic much better manually, than spending tax-payers money in lakhs/crores on all these new traffic lights, traffic signs and traffic LED boards. All these new systems are money-making tactics?