Signs Accentuate The Obvious, by Martine Powers Globe Staff – The Boston Globe/May 10

12 May

I received this article from my dear friend (Nancy) who lives in Boston. She saw my post on May 5 title “I have A Question”.

Love it!

Thank you so much Nancy! And Happy Belated Mother’s Day!

So HAPPY Boston is taking action, for everyone’s safety!

 

‘Changing lanes? Use yah blinkah.’
STATE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, talking to drivers in a Boston accent

When the Massachusetts Department of Transportation chose to warn drivers about the need to signal before changing lanes, they opted for a familiar patois: the Boston accent.
New messages appeared Friday morning on the state’s electronic highway signs, reading “Changing lanes? Use yah blinkah.”
The electronic message, which will be on display through the weekend, prompted an eruption of reactions, ranging from delight to horror, on social media as motorists spotted the messages during the morning commute.
“An actual sign entering Boston reads: ‘Changing lanes? Use yah blinkah.’ I kid you not,” wrote one Twitter user. “Wicked clevah!” wrote another.
Some expressed dismay: “I’m saddened that this is real.”
Highway Administrator Frank DePaola said he was pleased with the reactions to the effort to liven up the highway signs by appealing to Bostonians in their native dialect.
“Sometimes it becomes a little bit of white noise because we just repeat [the messages], so we thought we’d change them up a little bit,” DePaola said. “By changing the message and maybe using that creative spelling, we thought we’d get people’s attention and get people talking about it.”
He was a little taken aback by some of those positive expressions appearing with mages on social media.
“We don’t encourage the taking-a-picture part,” he said. “. . . I hope they’re doing all the tweets after they get to their destination, when they’re sitting at their desks.”
There may be more where that came from. DePaola said the success of the “Pahk Yah Cah in Hahvahd Yahd” -esque one-liner leads him to believe more may come in the future.
“I’m thinking maybe we end up soliciting the public, get some suggestions from the public on that . . . to try to come up with some uniquely crafted messages,” DePaola said.
The “Use Yah Blinkah” message was prompted by a complaint submitted to Mass DOT’s online contact form by a Massachussets resident who identified himself as James and requested that the transportation agency try to discourage drivers from changing lanes willy nilly.
“Occasionally, can the [Department of ] Transportation set up their sign to remind motorists to use their directional signals when changing lanes or moving to an exit ramp?” James wrote. “For safety sake and courtesy, it would be great if people on our streets and highways would use their signals when changing lanes. I’m not sure if it is thoughtlessness or ignorance, or indifference.”
Sara Lavoie, Mass DOT spokeswoman, said the agency saw the e-mail suggestion and decided to give it a try and have fun at the same time.
So far this year, police departments across the state have given out 1,083 tickets for failure to signal before changing lanes. Last year, police gave out 4,967 tickets for that violation, and 4,359 in 2012.

4 Responses to “Signs Accentuate The Obvious, by Martine Powers Globe Staff – The Boston Globe/May 10”

  1. LIZ May 12, 2014 at 12:47 pm #

    What a great article! Since reading your blog the other day about the absence of blinkers these days, I’ve noticed how truly bad it’s gotten! Wow. I’m all for “USE YA BLINKAH!”

    • asklotta May 12, 2014 at 12:52 pm #

      Hahaha! New Jersey has had a catchy symbol!!!

  2. Charlotte May 12, 2014 at 4:35 pm #

    I agree, wicked clevah 🙂

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