As I was driving on Crestview, I saw this small work site and took a photo. Q: How many warning signs are needed for a
10-foot-long hole? A: If you're the city, it takes eight flashing barricades, nine cones and two steel plates. In these
tight economic times, how much does it cost the city to rent all this gear? - Peek-a-boo Street
You shouldn't fault safety-device overkill on the city, which is doing the work in the 1900 block. Rather, you can
blame the legal system.
The city admittedly puts up too many warning devices as a precaution against lawsuits.
More is better," said Jack Rogers, director of public works. It used to be that cities would use a reasonable number
of warning devices, but with lawsuits, the pendulum has swung to the other extreme."
As for the cost, it's minimal compared with the payout for when someone does something stupid, like drive into a
well-marked gapping hole, and blames the government.
So the city barricades the perimeter with flashing barricades and orange cones and seals the area with metal slabs.
It's reminiscent of a situation years ago at Purgatory, where a young Action Line toiled as the resort's PR guy.
Several guests complained about collisions with skiers and boarders going too fast on the run called Demon, the main
trail to the base area.
So a bunch of signs were set up on the slopes telling people to slow down, watch out and be careful.
Instead of reducing accidents, more people were hurt running into the safety signs.
Sometimes, you can't protect people from themselves.
That's why Jack Rogers has a great idea for a new generation of street barricades. This one comes right out of science
If we could have them with automatic electric charge that repels cars," he said, that would be cool."
Can't anything be done about the graffiti under the 32nd Street Bridge? With rafting season around the corner, it's a
disgrace visitors have to see this junk as their first impression on the Animas River. Heck, if they supply the paint,I'll get some people and fix it. - Eric
Hold on to your paintbrush. The situation will be fixed.
As you know, graffiti is against city code. So what happens when city property gets tagged and nothing is done? The
city must cite itself for violating its own rules.
That's the ironic job of Steve Barkley, code enforcement officer. Steve has had to ticket his employer a couple of
times," he said, including a previously ignored painting instance under this very bridge.
Tagged again?" he asked. I'll pass it along to the police for a report, and then we will have some Youth Services
people come out and cover it up, hopefully before the river gets too high."
Steve speculated that there might be trolls living under the bridge. He vowed to cite them, too, if they are caught
with spray paint.
The Mea Culpa Mailbag contains a nice e-mail expounding upon last week's column about friendly river trail users versus
surly Rec Center worker-outers.
When you see a person while running/walking, it's easy to smile and say hi because they're just passing by. But when
you're working out at a gym, it's different," our correspondent points out.
I'll usually smile and say hello. But then, you have the people who strike up a conversation. When I'm at the gym,it's my time by myself. I like to just 'zone out' on the treadmill. When I'm doing weights and someone is talking to me
the whole time, I can't count the reps, and it's really frustrating," the reader writes.
So, at the Rec Center, be nice by not being so nice.
E-mail questions to email@example.com or mail them to Action Line, The Durango Herald, 1275 Main Ave.,Durango, CO 81301. You can request anonymity if you buy tons of great books at the Friends of the Durango Public
Library book sale Friday evening or all day Saturday.