We’ve all seen that wayward motorist swerving into another lane, or gotten stuck behind someone who didn’t go when the signal turned green.
Most likely, those motorists were too busy looking down at their cellphones rather than paying attention to the road.
A poll released last month by AAA’s Foundation for Traffic Safety found that 87.5 percent of us believe distracted driving is getting worse, outpacing traffic congestion, aggressive drivers, motorists who use drugs and drunken driving as “growing concerns” on the road.
About 49 percent of the respondents admitted to using a hand-held phone while driving, according to AAA’s poll of 2,613 licensed drivers across the United States who were 16 and older between Oct. 14 and Nov. 17, 2017.
Nearly 45 percent of those surveyed said they read a text or email message while driving, while 34.6 percent sent a text or email while driving, AAA officials said at the start of Distracted Driving Awareness Month in May.
“Texting while driving increases the odds of a crash by two to eight times,” AAA Nevada spokesman Michael Blasky said.
“Driving while talking on mobile devices, even when they’re hands-free, makes an accident four times as likely,” Blasky said. “As drivers, we simply have to find ways to eliminate distractions behind the wheel.”
Motorists distracted by navigation systems, eating, applying makeup, shaving or even chatting with passengers may be cited under Nevada’s “fail to pay full attention while driving” law.
Nevada’s cellphone law requires drivers to pull to the side of the road or use a hands-free Bluetooth device.
For those who absolutely feel the need to use their electronic devices, Blasky suggested that drivers designate a passenger to answer incoming calls, send or reply to text messages and assist with navigation when the vehicle is in motion.
Otherwise, use the technologies for legitimate emergencies or urgent, driving-related purposes, he said.
Lights need to be turned on
Sherri from Las Vegas noticed that a set of street lights had been installed at Rainbow Boulevard and Mountains Edge Parkway in the southwest valley, but they weren’t turned on.
Clark County spokesman Dan Kulin said a developer installed the lights, but county officials are designing a traffic signal for that dark intersection.
Once the county acquires the right of way and crews install the traffic signal, then the street lights will be switched on, Kulin said. Unfortunately, there’s no timeline on when that might happen.
Green arrow working again
Ken from North Las Vegas wanted to know why there isn’t a dedicated green arrow for drivers wanting to turn left at Lake Mead Boulevard and Belmont Street.
“There used to be one, but now we only have a flashing yellow arrow that causes a considerable backup,” Ken wrote in an email to the Road Warrior.
North Las Vegas city spokeswoman Delen Goldberg said there was a temporary operation problem with the signal. Crews have fixed the problem, and the dedicated green arrow should be working now.
Confusing school zone signs
Matthew from Las Vegas noticed some confusing school zone signs along northbound Lamb Avenue, just north of Washington Boulevard.
“A new school zone sign was posted for a charter school that recently opened, but the old speed limit signs were never removed,” Matthew said in an email to the Road Warrior. “So, you go from a school zone to a 40 mph area, then an ‘end of school zone’ sign, followed by another ‘end of school zone sign.’”
Yes, that definitely sounds confusing.
Part of the problem may come from the fact that there is a crosswalk at Lamb and Monroe Avenue that’s designated for a nearby public school, which is separate from the charter school zone at Lamb and Washington, Las Vegas city spokeswoman Margaret Kurtz said.
Matthew’s question prompted city staffers to start reviewing the signs along Lamb to determine how to reduce the confusion, Kurtz said.
Sign will be replaced
Jo from Las Vegas noticed that the street sign at the south end of Bedford Road, near Charleston Boulevard, has gone missing for at least three years and wanted to know when it will be replaced.
Kurtz, the Las Vegas spokeswoman, said Jo’s question prompted city crews to order a new sign, which will be installed sometime soon.
Questions and comments should be sent to email@example.com. Please include your phone number. Follow the Road Warrior on Twitter: @RJroadwarrior.
Road work ahead
■ The Charleston Boulevard offramp from southbound Interstate 15 will close from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. nightly from Tuesday to Thursday. Crews are building a freeway bridge.
■ Charleston Boulevard will be closed beneath Interstate 15 from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. nightly from Tuesday to Thursday. Crews are building a freeway bridge.
■ Main Street is restricted between Bonneville Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard through May. Crews are working on a storm drain.
■ The D Street onramp to southbound Interstate 15 is closed through mid-July. Crews are working on Project Neon.
■ Sections of Bonneville Avenue, Charleston Boulevard, Grand Central Parkway and Martin Luther King Boulevard will have closed or disrupted lanes surrounding the Spaghetti Bowl as crews work on Project Neon through July.
■ Ogden Avenue will be restricted between Main Street and City Parkway through mid-October. Crews are making street, sidewalk and lighting improvements.
■ The Charleston Boulevard onramps to southbound Interstate 15 are closed until mid-October. Crews are rebuilding the intersection.
■ Interstate 15 will be narrowed in both directions between Sahara Avenue and D Street until Nov. 20. Crews are widening the freeway.
■ The ramp connecting southbound U.S. Highway 95 to southbound I-15 will be reduced to one lane and detoured through Nov. 20. Crews are widening I-15.
■ The ramp linking southbound U.S. 95 to northbound I-15 is closed through Nov. 20. Crews are widening I-15.
■ The Martin Luther King Boulevard onramp to southbound U.S. Highway 95 is closed until early 2019. Crews are building a high-occupancy flyover ramp.
■ Gass Avenue will be restricted between Las Vegas and Charleston Boulevards through March 2019. Crews are making pedestrians and bicycle improvements.
■ Both directions of U.S. Highway 95 will be narrowed to a single lane between the 215 Beltway and Durango Drive from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. nightly through June 5. Crews are building a carpool ramp at Elkhorn Road.
■ Both directions of U.S. Highway 95 are narrowed to a single lane between Skye Canyon Park and Paiute drives through July 12. Crews are building a new interchange bridge.
■ Buffalo Drive is restricted between Gowan Road and Cheyenne Avenue through July. Crews are upgrading a gas line.
■ Tenaya Way and Torrey Pines Drive are restricted between Gowan and Craig roads through July. Crews are upgrading a gas line.
■ Gowan Road is restricted between Buffalo and Torrey Pines drives through July. Crews are upgrading a gas line.
■ Craig Road is restricted between Torrey Pines Drive and Decatur Boulevard through July. Crews are upgrading a gas line.
■ Both directions of U.S. Highway 95 will be narrowed to two lanes at Elkhorn Road through December. Crews are building a new carpool ramp.
■ Jones Boulevard will be restricted between Tropicana and University avenues through June 29. Crews are doing sewer work.
■ Eastern Avenue is restricted between Flamingo Road and Tompkins Avenue through June 11. Crews are restoring the street.
■ Center Street is restricted between Burkholder Boulevard and Lake Mead Parkway through June. Crews are making various road improvements.
North Las Vegas
■ U.S. Highway 93 is restricted between Interstate 15 and Apex Power Parkway through June. Crews are widening the highway and upgrading an interchange.
■ Nellis Boulevard is restricted between Cheyenne Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard from 6 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. weekdays through July. Crews are installing sewer pipes.
The average gasoline price Friday in the Las Vegas Valley was $3.21 per gallon. It was $3.23 in Nevada. The national average of $2.82 is up 2 cents from a week ago, up 16 cents from a month ago and up 46 cents from a year ago.
Las Vegas Review-Journal