At 8:21 a.m. on Aug. 28, a city garbage truck was stopped in front of our house at 878 West River Road (Route 104) heading south toward Augusta.

Wednesday is trash day and, like every previous trash day for the 37 years we’ve lived here, drivers of cars in the southbound lane behind the garbage truck have a very important choice to make: Do I pass the truck on this extremely blind hill, already the site of a traffic fatality and several accidents, or should I wait 30 seconds until the truck reaches the top of the hill and the view opens up for a half-mile?

Today, two foolish drivers took the risk and passed the truck without incident. Within a minute of their decision, however, a motorcycle traveling at normal speed, roughly 50 miles an hour, crested the hill going north. Within another minute, a huge gravel truck crested the same hill heading in the same direction. A head-on collision was avoided, not by prudent driving, but by chance.

We all realize that traffic patterns in the city have necessarily been disjointed by all the construction, and some roads, like ours, are experiencing wildly increased use. We all hope that drivers using less-familiar roads will use common sense and show a wee bit more patience.

So, the question all drivers must ask themselves next Wednesday and every Wednesday at 8:21 a.m. on our road is: “Do I feel lucky today”?

James B. Nichols


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