‘It is scary to be a driver on the road today’
Thank you Dan Rodricks for your article, “Speed cameras on Baltimore’s JFX should be the start of many more on U.S. highways” (July 20). More than ever, since the start of the pandemic, highways and streets are full of reckless drivers. Cars exceed speed limits at very high speeds and zigzag from one lane to the next, missing other cars by a few inches. Driving on highways and local streets has become very dangerous. State and local police need to start patrolling roadways and ticketing reckless drivers. It is scary to be a driver on the road today.
Helen Zeitzoff, Pikesville
Cellphone use while driving worse than speeding
I like the idea of speed cameras on Interstate 83 as long as they don’t cause backups; 50 mph, as posted on parts of southbound Northern Parkway, is unrealistic and should be raised to 55. I would send out warnings about the cameras and decide on a speed that really is dangerous — like 70 — for a fine.
Might it be better to focus on cellphone use will driving? I’ll bet texting, which really diverts driver attention, is more dangerous that exceeding a somewhat arbitrary speed limit.
Jeb Brownstein, Pikesville
Reckless driving not confined to JFX
Although I never travel on the Jones Falls Expressway, I can easily understand and believe Dan Rodricks’ comments about the dangerous state of driving and safety on the JFX, and those comments can be applied to other area roads. Case in point: I frequently travel Route 100, where incidents of vehicle operators breaking the laws are rampant. This includes not only speeding but also radical lane changes and traffic weaving, using exit lanes as passing lanes, tailgating at excessive speeds, distracted driving and other very unsafe actions.
In the short term, it’s imperative that the Anne Arundel County and Howard County police departments and the Maryland State Police crack down on vehicle operators’ adherence to the laws of the road to boost travel safety for everyone using our roads. In the long term, installation of speed cameras, although a lengthier process, might also improve the situation.
Jim Huminski, Hanover
‘We need more cameras and serious fines’
As a daily driver on Interstate 83, the situation is dire for those of us trying to survive. Fines on the road would solve the crisis and raise funds for the city.
Seemingly daily accidents require multiple police vehicles to funnel traffic by the accident site, usually at the infamous “S” curve, and cause the rest of us to spend hours trying to get by. Hotshots think they are in a video game and weave in within a hair’s width of vehicles going the speed limit. To continuously do nothing is not acceptable, and two speed cameras will solve nothing, especially if they are just window dressing. We need more cameras and serious fines!
Susan (Wendy) Noyes, Baltimore
Faded lane markings are another JFX issue that needs attention
Dan Rodricks is correct in pointing out the design defects and the absence of enforcement of speeding violations on the JFX. But there is another problem: the faded lane markings. In daylight they are hard to see, at night they are very hard to see, and on a rainy night they are impossible to see — particularly in the southern portion of the road. This problem the city can fix. Why is it not being addressed?
Laurence M. Katz, Baltimore
Drivers play dangerous games on the JFX
Dan Rodricks said it all when he wrote, about the failure to crack down on speeders, it shows again how frustratingly deferential or weak some politicians can be when it comes to supporting unpopular things that save lives.” Playing the games of dodge ball, pinball, tag and hide and seek with cars is life threatening. Fund the training and hiring of more state troopers and police officers, as well as increase the number of speed cameras, to save the lives of motorists who are subjected to playing life threatening games of speed.
W. Rogers, Baltimore