By Mary Bush Odessa
I have been a resident of Odessa for 12 years and in that time I have generally had a favorable view of the way the roads have been upgraded and maintained. Like most other drivers I am not a fan of potholes and wash board sections of the road and have often wondered what the heck takes so long to fix all this stuff. I was going to rant about how long it takes but after doing a bit of research I learned two things. First the city can’t fix what it doesn’t know about and second; there are a bunch of projects and repairs underway all the time. If we have a pothole or road condition to report we can do so by going to http://www.odessa-tx.gov/home and call the number listed or click I WANT TO… the street repair department will repair the problem but it will have to take its turn based on traffic volume and condition.
My previous city of residence was El Paso, basically Odessa times seven with an international twist due to drivers from Mexico who tend to drive very differently from us. Like Odessa and Midland we don’t have synchronized traffic lights. What I would like to see the Odessa Traffic Advisory Committee (until I did my research I didn’t know we had one either) do is to institute the same warning devise used in El Paso. That is a solid white line at every intersection controlled by a traffic light that lets you know that when the light turns Amber and if you’re within the line you won’t be able to stop before the light turns Red. In example traveling at 45 MPH the line will need to be 196 feet long. This doesn’t mean you floor it so you can make it! It means if you’re in it you keep going and you’ll be fine. if you’re not in it come to a stop. Way too many people die because someone tries to beat the light. The White line (known as the point of no return) won’t stop accidents from happening but it may reduce the number experienced now.