All Jammed Up

In my Tuesday post, I mentioned that I-35 was completely closed down in the city of Temple, Texas, last Sunday morning. The point of that post was thankfulness for God’s protection. This morning, I mention it for a different reason.

Part of the reason it took us an hour and a half to get past the blockage and back onto the freeway at a point where traffic was flowing normally was the unwillingness or inability of the Temple Police Department to act. I didn’t see one policeman doing anything to help the situation.

Access roads are not designed to carry heavy traffic loads. Their normal usage is to allow the few cars using a given freeway exit to get to the next intersection. Arriving at that intersection, drivers will be regulated in either crossing it or turning by traffic lights or by stop signs. This doesn’t put an onerous burden on anyone when the traffic flow is normal.

When all the traffic which normally moves through the area at 65 to 75 miles an hour is diverted on the access roads, however, the system breaks down. Traffic lights are set to accommodate the normal volume of traffic. They stay green long enough for a few cars to move through, and then they turn red while a few cars on the cross street move through.

When several thousand cars are backed up waiting for the light to cycle, this setup does not work well. Designed for normal traffic flow, the light only allows a few of the thousands of cars through before turning red to allow cross traffic to flow. Meanwhile the heavy load of traffic inches ahead a few car-lengths at a time.

The police department should have acted to change this. They should have called in as many off-duty, part-time, and volunteer personnel as necessary to man the lights and manually control them to allow many times as much access-road traffic to get through each cycle as normal.

The backup in traffic could not have been avoided. When an accident closes a freeway, there will always be a problem. However, a little prudent action on the part of the police could have made the delay maybe a half hour instead of an hour and a half.

What frustrations have you experienced with such traffic delays?


We may not have it all together, but together we have it all.


For more information about David N. Walker, click the “About” tab above.

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Contact him at dnwalkertx (at) gmail (dot) com or tweet him at @davidnwalkertx.


About David N. Walker

David N. Walker is a Christian husband, father and grandfather, a grounded pilot and a near-scratch golfer who had to give up the game because of shoulder problems. A graduate of Duke University, he spent 42 years in the health insurance industry, during which time he traveled much of the United States. He started writing about 20 years ago and has been a member and leader in several writers' groups. Christianity 101: The Simplified Christian Life, the devotional Heaven Sent and the novella series, Fancy, are now available in paperback and in Kindle and Nook formats, as well as through Smashwords and Kobo. See information about both of these by clicking "Books" above.
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9 Responses to All Jammed Up

  1. The article lighten my heart. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I ran into huge backups in and around Nashville when we tried to move to Tennessee when my youngest was a baby. And it had nothing to do with accidents – just people who apparently don’t know which lane they should be in. Well, I never saw an accident anyway. There have been a few here though, and I’ve missed getting stuck in them only because, miraculously, I noticed in time to take an exit.

    What frustrations do I experience with delays? I usually avoid delays. But, in general, if anyone else is on the road when I’m driving, I’m frustrated. 😀


  3. Sharon K. Walker says:

    I’ve never encountered a total closing of all lanes in one direction on a highway the magnitude of I-35 until last Sunday. Too bad the Texas Highway Troopers couldn’t have lent a hand to help with the massive logjam. We make it home safely, thank goodness, although we lost valuable time.


  4. Rose Marie Russo says:

    Ho David, Good morning. I have never experienced a Delay such as the one you describe but I totally agree with you. The Police should have been conducting the traffic.By the police not doing so could have resulted in an accident.As you know, the Police in Most States cry that they do Not Have the money to Put extra Police on Duty I’m very Happy you and your wife got home home Safe. God Bless you and your family !!!!


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