Monthly Archives: April 2012

Tuesday Is Crossing Guard Appreciation Day

Believe it or don’t.

May 1st is Crossing Guard Appreciation Day in the State of Illinois.

No. Seriously. No kidding.

Since 2005, Illinois has been recognizing the important work of getting kids to school safely each day by designating the first day of May annually to encourage people to show appreciation for their local crossing guards.

“They put their lives at stake every day for our kids and are some of the bravest, most crucial resources for making walking and biking to school safe,” says Ethan Spotts, a spokesperson for the Active Transportation Alliance, a local group that promotes biking, walking and alternative transportation choices.

Sun-Times: Chicagoland’s 20 Most Dangerous Intersections

While a list of the Illinois Department of Transportation’s most dangerous intersections pinpoints spots all over the greater Chicagoland area, the number one spot is reserved of course, by Chicago.

According to the Chicago Sun-Times, the intersection at Stony Island Avenue at South Chicago Avenue is area’s most prolific producer of vehicle crashes with a total of 63 in 2010.

The newspaper makes the case that this particular intersection is extraordinarily confusing. Most drivers who have experienced this busy multi-roadway confluence would concur.

The article quotes DePaul University transportation scholar, Professor Joseph Schwieterman.

Driver’s Excuse For Going 111 MPH? To Have Sex!

Zachary P. Ramriez likes to drive fast

At least he was being honest.

Naperville resident Zachary P. Ramirez got pulled over by Naperville police after he was caught on radar driving 111 mph (in a 45 mph zone) and blew through a red light and a stop sign according to a Fox Chicago News story.

Where was young Zachary going in such a hurry?

He was rushing to have sex with a girl he liked he explained to the cops.

We’re not sure that defense will hold up in court though.

That must have been one amazingly attractive young woman to be driving so fast.

ALERT!: Critical Mass To Screw Up Rush Hour Traffic Tonight

Bikers "Mass" up traffic in Wicker Park

It’s that time of month again.

Those crazy bike riders who make up Critical Mass Chicago, hit the streets at 5:30 PM starting at Daley Center.

The last Friday of the month mega-bike ride causes traffic chaos wherever it happens to meander for approximately 10 or so miles and two to three hours.

As usual, the route is not known until just before 5:30.

The Most Dangerous Bumper Sticker Ever

“Honk if you want to see my tits”?

This bumper sticker is a traffic safety hazard.

While only speculation, it’s our educated guess this car could be causing innumerable car crashes as it travels the streets of Chicago.

At the very least it’s increasing noise pollution with all the honking it’s causing.

Slow Down! It’s Work Zone Awareness Week

With road construction projects sprouting up all over Chicago and the State of Illinois, local agencies have announced their participation in National Work Zone Awareness Week.

Both the Illinois Department of Transportation, the Illinois Tollway Authority and a handful of other groups have launched the Embrace the Orange Campaign to reduce traffic related crashes, injuries and deaths in road work zones.

Work Zone Awareness Week began Monday, April 23rd and runs through Friday.

IDOT says there are an average of over 7,000 work zone crashes in Illinois each year. Last year, 24 people died in work zones statewide. Of the 24, one victim was a pedestrian, two were construction workers, and 21 were drivers or vehicle passengers.The goal is to reduce work zone deaths to zero.

‘Monster’ Created From Parking Meter Receipts

Chicago Artist Designs ‘Parka the Hutt’ from Expired Parking Stubs:

Chicago Magazine’s Jeff Ruby disdains parking meter receipts.

Ruby opens his story about his loathing for these little receipts in the May issue of the magazine this way:

“Suddenly they’re everywhere. Nestled in gutters, clogging up dashboards, swirling around alleys and avenues like ticker tape after a parade. I unknowingly spent an entire day with one stuck to the bottom of my shoe. Nobody’s sure what to call them. Parking stubs? Pay box receipts? Beelzebub’s confetti? Three years ago, they didn’t exist, but today they have become as much a part of Chicago’s fabric as kielbasa and bribery.”

Hatred for the meter receipts turned those little white and green slips of paper littering Chicago’s streets into artistic inspiration for Ruby.

Trib: City Crash Statistics Faulty, Erroneous

First responders on the scene of a River North car crash

Chock full of errors.

That’s essentially the takeaway from a Chicago Tribune story published Monday that reveals how unreliable Chicago crash data is or at the very least, has been.

The Tribune compared crash data for Chicago from the Illinois Department of Transportation against crash data from the City of Chicago itself.

In many cases, usually the most crucial areas of measurement, the two entities were at odds.

According to the Trib report, the root of the problem comes from errors in how crash reports are filed. The story says an IDOT audit of Chicago’s procedure shows 30% of crash reports filed by Chicago police officers were erroneous with 70% of the reports missing critical information.

Two Cubs Night Games Monday, Tuesday Evening

The St. Louis Cardinals are in town.

The Cubs kick off a three game series against the Cards Monday and Tuesday evening with a pair of night games.

First pitch is at 7:05 PM, but parking restrictions on residential streets surrounding Wrigley Field aka Lakeview and/or Wrigleyville begin at 5 PM.

If you don’t have the proper residential parking permits or temporary passes you will most likely be ticketed and towed.

We suggest avoiding the traffic and chaos of a Cubs night game by staying away or leaving the neighborhood altogether.

Online Sales For Chicago City Stickers Start Monday

Nearly a full month earlier than last year, starting Monday, Chicago drivers can purchase their annual city vehicle stickers online via the City Clerk’s website.

Traditionally, city sticker sales have started June 1st, a date which kicked off a month of sales, followed by another two week grace period ending July 15th. Drivers who had not purchased and displayed their new city sticker on the windshield of their vehicle risked an expensive parking ticket.

However, since adding an e-commerce option for city stickers purchases to its website, the Clerk’s office has been trying to promote web sales by giving drivers a head start on vehicle sticker purchases if they buy online.

Last year, online sales began May 20th, about a week and a half before in-person sales normally begins.

But this year, the City Clerk’s office is extending the city sticker sales season by nearly six weeks by beginning online sales today, with in-person sales starting May 1st.