Friday, 13 February 2009

"Clean conscience"

I was going to expostulate about this Verdant vehicle, operated on behalf of the London Borough of Waltham Forest, which drove into this Advanced Stop Line for cyclists yesterday morning at 10.35 am on Forest Road, junction with Shernhall Street. It overtook me and went into the pink box at red. I dragged off my gloves, whipped out my camera and managed to get this snap, just as the lights started to change.

The vehicle was one those used for fortnightly brown bin organic refuse collections. It bears the slogan ‘Clean conscience’. Registration number HX55 LSO.

But when I looked at the photo an awful possibility occurred to me. I went back to check. And sure enough this ASL lacks a white logo of a bicycle. It also lacks a first continuous white line at the box entry. So I guess it has no legal force whatsoever as an ASL and serves no other purpose than to break up the standard colour monotony of tarmac with a rectangle of pink.

And on further reflection it occurred to me that a Verdant driver would no more think of driving into an ASL than a Verdant recycling team would dream of collecting the black boxes in a way which ensures that a street visited by the team afterwards looks as if a tornado had hit it. Indeed, letters regularly appear in the local paper, paying tribute to the professionalism and efficiency of Verdant. And to any sceptics out there, all I can say is that you obviously haven't been on the Verdant website. Just scroll down to the foot of the page and see which towering local figure gives Verdant a ringing endorsement.