Aggressive driving is bad news in Lake Travis.
On busy roadways like 620 and 71, it is also deadly.
Over the years, we’ve lost wonderful community members to auto accidents, so we know better. If everyone is aware of the real dangers that exist on our roads, why do we have so many reckless drivers?
And as a community, what can we do about it?
Yesterday I witnessed a truck get t-boned because a driver made an improper left turn across two lanes of oncoming traffic on 620. During 5 o’clock rush hour. The truck never saw it coming.
Less than 12 hours later during morning rush hour, I guess I didn’t leap from a complete stop fast enough at a short-cycling light onto 620 — there were also cars in front of me — so a huge truck angrily revved his engine and rode my bumper through the yellow light.
After I safely made the left turn, he flew by me on my right, rolled down his window and gestured at me. Then he hung his arm out of his window with his phone in his hand to snap a picture of me while he was still driving on 620. (Uhm, why?) I managed to give him an inappropriate and/or appropriate hand gesture, which may or may not be posted online somewhere.
The point is, as a community, let’s stop the madness. It goes without saying, the Lake Travis area during rush hour is no place for road rage. Running late is not a good reason. Being a lunatic is also not a good reason.
There is plenty of danger for everyone on 620, 2222 and 71 in perfect driving conditions.
While TxDOT is slowly improving highways in Lakeway, Bee Cave, and Spicewood, there is little room for driver error and lots of room for head-on collisions.
Sure, everyone makes mistakes.
We get distracted by an overwhelming mental to-do list or we have too many kids in the car on the way to soccer practice.
We screw up.
But the drivers who make life on the road more dangerous intentionally?! Enough is enough.
Children at play
I’ve personally witnessed people driving at least 20 mph over the speed limit on neighborhood streets where small children are playing in their own front yards.
I’ve also witnessed the parents of said children try to chase down these drivers on foot out of sheer frustration.
The “SLOW: Drive As If Your Kids Were Playing On This Street” signs are not in Lake Travis yards for decoration or humor, they’re a plea for safety.
School zone safety
If you drive on Lohmans Crossing, you’ve seen plenty of people get pulled over for speeding.
In February of 2015, a man was arrested for driving drunk in the school zone at Lakeway Elementary. He was charged with a third degree felony. It was his third DWI.
In Lakeway alone, we keep LPD Officers busy with all kinds of traffic issues from speeding tickets to crashes. Just take a glance at Lakeway Mayor Joe Bain’s blog and you might be surprised at the amount of vehicle-related incidents that occur every month.
What residents are doing
A few weeks ago, our friends at Community Impact chatted with Spicewood resident Linda Wall, a representative for Save Our Spicewood, an organization that is petitioning TxDOT for improvements to a particularly dangerous stretch of West Hwy. 71 — between RR 620 and US 281 — the site of 140 crashes last year including fatalities.
What else can we do? Are there other initiatives we should know about? If you have ideas, let us know in the comments section on Facebook.