Sunday, March 12, 2017

Safety First in the Valley...


The paramount concern in the country today appears to be the safety and security of America's citizens: build a wall to keep out the evil ones; hire more security personnel and station them to have its back should the wall not be high enough to thwart the hordes of villains and blackguards lurking without, eager to work their evil on our citizenry; increase security groping at airports, extreme pat downs, if you will, to protect air travelers from the evil that is afoot in the world at large; implement travel bans to insulate the homeland from those bent on wreaking havoc on our way of life, families, and peace of mind; and for the future, promise the country will boast a military the likes of which haven't existed on Earth since the days of the great Caesars. Soon all citizens will be able to have a good night's sleep: safe and secure in the knowledge we can now go about our daily lives without constantly having to look over our shoulders. In short, we will finally be able to roam the country in safety and at last be able to leave our guns at home.

The foregoing pertains, in the main, to the national stage, but those who pass through or reside in the Valley should give thanks to our State's Department of Transportation for its proactive efforts to keep drivers safe, detect any potential snares and pitfalls that may prove a hazard to motorists who use the Valley's Tualco Loop Road.

There's new signage, if you haven't noticed it, an embellishment to the Tualco-North Highrock turn lane. If you aren't too focused on looking left and right (twice on the latter...remember your Driver's Ed instruction) for your opportunity to creep carefully onto SR. 203, you'll see it. Staring you straight in the face on the east side of 203 and firmly bolted to a state-of-the art breakaway stanchion is a yellow warning sign featuring two bold black arrows. One arrow points north toward town; the other to all points south on SR. 203.

I happened along just as a pair of orange vested DOT workers finished the installation. They moved from side to side examining  their work, and apparently satisfied, moved across the road for a repeat performance on a new stop sign for traffic coming to the intersection.

It is not often you have the opportunity to thank those whose job it is to keep you safer. And The Ripple was not about to let this chance slip by. I pulled alongside the two State workers, rolled down my window, and shouted my approval of their labors. "Thanks to your efforts and that sign," I shared, "I'll no longer have the urge to run the new stop sign, shoot across three lanes of traffic on a busy State Road, and plow through a thicket of blackberries into the murk of Riley Slough." One orange vest stood momentarily, smiled, shook his head, and gave me that quizzical look as if to say: "We're just doing our job, 'ours not to question why,'" and resumed work on the new breakaway stop sign.

So on behalf Tualco Valley motorists The Ripple extends a heartfelt thanks for making the Valley a safer place for drivers. Thanks, WSDOT. Thanks for your service. Print this post

7 comments:

  1. I wish while they were there, they would have installed more of those flat, white, blow in the wind reflectors at least along SR203 as there are only a couple left from the original 5 or so. They help keep people from driving on the wet grass, making ruts that my riding lawnmower doesnt like that well, either do Denise and myself with our rakes and shovels and backs. I asked them to install a french drain for the water runoff build up and a guardrail along SR203 and Tualco Road when they did the turn lane and they said they would consider it, but did neither and later said the water isnt a big enough problem and a guardrail is a safety issue as they can only install them along steep slopes - Thanks, WSDOT and SnoCo Public Works. Thanks for your service.

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    1. Matt, ever since we moved to the Valley back in '75 we've done battle with WSDOT. First run in over our driveway access to 203. DOT required drain tiles between driveway and the highway. We received a terse letter saying if we didn't comply with the driveway/highway access, they'd come in tear up everything we'd done. Couple of orange vests knocked on the door bringing us the glad tidings. I told them all drain tiles would do would be direct the flow of runoff onto our lawn. They laughed and said they were just doing their job. Neighbor told us to buy two drain tiles, install each on either side of the driveway, fill in the middle of it. We did this and that got them off our backs. Interesting that when the turn lane went in, that part of our driveway was excavated and the tiles were nowhere to be found. Thanks for reading and don't get me started on DOT's "vegetation control" program...their spraying nasty stuff directly across the road from my bees. TMJ

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  2. Im sure the riley slough frogs love the crossbow spray too. They gov entities can only do so much and when they do only a certain way with funds available probably because we dont pay enough property taxes - mine average $825/month with what I own - Im sure Im not paying enough - I like the idea of a Tualco Township with a post office, emergency response, and you can be the Mayor Terry, then our tax dollars stay in the Valley. The Sno Co wont let that happen though.

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    1. Politics? No, I think I'll stick to reporting "fake" news. Besides, if I were mayor of the Valley, I'd have to bulldoze Swiss Hall and build a courthouse...and raise everyone's taxes to do so.

      BTW. DOT must have read your first comment. They were out in front of the house this a.m. installing new "floppy" reflector posts. And, no, this is not fake news. TMJ

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  3. Hmmm interesting - if they are reading then . . . 35 mph would be safer for everyone all the way to South High Rock Road - especially with the Cadman entrance and the high number of gravel trucks in the area competing with all the commuters. Also save the Tualco Township tax dollars Mayor Terry by not bull dozing the Swiss Hall but rather turn it into the Tualco Historical Society with Schwinn Cruiser bicycle rentals to tour the Tualco Loop Road fertile farmland and promote agrotourism.

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  4. They didnt install more white reflectors along my property on SR203. There use to be 5 or 6 along my stretch of SR203 frontage there. Only 2 old ones left. Notice the ruts on the corner. Someone almost took out the giant galvanized metal area light pole on the corner.

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    1. I only noticed the new ones along our right-of-way. Didn't pay attention to what DOT did north of Tualco on 203. Looks like they did set new ones along Lake Beebe there at the intersection. I'm not sure just what purpose the floppy posts serve, but you're welcome to help yourself to some of mine. Given all the traffic on 203 all these years, it's a miracle no one has taken out our hedge. TMJ

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