Lesson for fist shaker
This is to 613-NR _, and all the rest of the frustrated commuters in our valley. I cannot get the picture out of my head of you opening your SUV door and standing in the middle of Highway 82, stuck in traffic, shaking your fist at me. I was doing what I do five days a week, 48 weeks a year. I was getting 40-plus people safely home from work. I haul hundreds of passengers to and from work on Highway 82 weekly; I am a RFTA bus driver. Here’s a number for you Mr. Fist Shaker, 4.1 million. That is how many passengers we recorded in 2006-2007.
Oh, I can imagine you must hate it when a RFTA bus cuts in front of you, or slips by you in a designated slip lane. Damn that bus that puts 45 feet between you and your destination. Forty-five feet, Mr. Fist Shaker, is the length of that bus. Monday through Friday, from 5:35 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. and from 3:15 p.m. to 7:45 p.m., RFTA buses on Highway 82 are usually full to capacity with passengers. In fact, some may even have people standing in the aisles. Now, Mr. Fist Shaker, how many cars do you think would be on the road every day if it wasn’t for those buses?
Our passengers endure waiting in cold weather, walking sometimes blocks to bus stops, and leaving their warm cars in park and rides to ride a bus. Why? Because they desire to be part of the solution, not more of the problem of too many cars on the road. RFTA buses daily remove thousands of cars from our highways and city streets, eliminating traffic and probably preventing accidents as well. It is a fact, Mr. Fist Shaker, miles of cars are kept out of your way by those buses. I think instead of being angry enough to stop your car in traffic and shake a fist at a bus driver, you should pull over into your lane and let the bus pass in THE DESIGNATED BUS LANE.
Try being thankful that there are RFTA buses, and RFTA drivers. And yield the road to thousands of people in this valley that are more willing than you to be part of the solution for too much traffic between you and your destination. From a “shaken” bus driver.
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There is a lot of pent up energy among hikers and bikers to get into the high country, but snow fields, avalanche debris and high stream crossings are presenting challenges later than usual. Forest rangers with the Aspen-Sopris District provide trail condition reports that are updated each week so hikers and backpackers aren’t caught unaware.