It's been a frustrating couple of days for commuters in Montgomery County. The 30-year-old computer that controlled more than 750 traffic lights in the county crashed the other night, leaving the lights with no way of adjusting their timing to account for rush hours. The lights still operated, but in many cases, their timing patterns made no sense, and thousands of commuters were left sitting through series of frustrating short-cycles.
This really falls into the unfortunate category of "sh** happens". No one likes it, but really - what are you going to do, other than frown and bear it until the problem is fixed? Well, here in the peoples' republic of Montgomery County, our leaders are loathe to sit on their hands and do nothing. Better to provide some kind of "fix", even if it does nothing and costs the county a lot of money!
The county, in all its wisdom, is providing its Ride-On commuter bus service for free today. Is this really supposed to provide some sort of relief? How many cars is this going to take off the roads? Are people who normally drive going to abandon their cars in favor of riding on unfamiliar buses? Will this get them to work any faster?
The answers are no, none, no and no. Regular Ride-On riders are getting treated to freebies today, and county managers are getting the opportunity to show they are doing "something" to address the traffic issues. I don't know what an average day's revenue is on Ride-On, but it has to run in the 10's of thousands of dollars. But now, we've given up that money, all to allow some bureaucrats to demonstrate they are "on the case".
Hey, Montgomery County! Sometimes NO solution is a better solution!