Dear Street Smarts,
Q: Happy Valentine’s Day and thanks for the column about headlights (Street Smarts, Feb. 14). It is by far one of the most important you have addressed.
The system is hopelessly out of control and beyond solving. The federal agency you cited has long had responsibility for highway safety and it has been reduced to issuing reports with irrelevant and misused statistics. At least your State expert understands the problem of aging lenses and the threat we face nightly behind the wheel.
For the future, I can offer one suggestion. Spend highway money on putting adequate plastic light deflectors on top of existing medians. Highway 17 uses 12 inch strips in some places but those are inadequate and need to be much bigger!
By the way, when I am blinded by approaching headlights and I lose sight of the edges of the road, my only defense is to turn on my brights until I recover my bearings.
Bill Delaney, Capitola
A: Happy Valentine’s Day right back at you, Bill. Yes, dealing with bright headlights is difficult.
When oncoming cars lights are bright, sometimes I flash my headlights, only to have the other driver flash theirs, revealing they do not have their headlights on high beams. Besides focusing more on the fog line to the right of my vehicle when I am being blinded, what I found works a little bit is to turn on my dome light. Having that light on inside my car diffuses the bright lights coming at me from in front and behind.
However, when it comes to bright lights from behind, sometimes I will divert my mirrors away from my face. When the offending vehicle passes, I return my mirrors to normal. I also try changing lanes or adjusting my speed so the offending vehicle from behind can pass.
OK Street Smarts readers, what tricks do you have for dealing with bright lights from oncoming vehicles?
Opinion: Litter from garbage trucks
I’m glad to see this brought up in Street Smarts, Monday, Feb. 11. I am the ‘bag lady’ of my roadway – Old San Jose Road – and I pick up roadside garbage as I walk. THE VAST MAJORITY OF ROADSIDE GARBAGE I PICK UP IS AT THE SPOTS WHERE THE NEIGHBORHOOD GARBAGE CANS ARE FOR WEDNESDAY MORNING PICK UP! The mechanical arms lift the cans up, but ‘wind’ blows garbage onto the roadways. Our tax dollars at ‘work.’ Sickening!
Marcia via email