By Jon Miller | Post Date: July 24, 2008 1:48 PM | Comments: 8
One of the small remaining delights in foreign travel after 15 years of it is the discovery of yet another laughably ambiguous visual control. Something about them tickles the sense of humor that has been punished by jet lag and questionable menu choices. This latest ambiguous visual control comes from one of my favorite countries, which shall go nameless to protect the innocent.
What's wrong with this picture? Not so much, until my traveling companion and Gemba team member stops, then runs this red traffic light. Can you guess why?
Normal stop sign behavior. He stopped at the stop sign at eye level, not noticing the red traffic light above him, then continued on through cross traffic. Luckily no harm done.
Perhaps these stop signs are extra precautions at a busy intersection to prevent drivers in a hurry from attempting to run red or yellow lights. But then what do we do in this situation?
Unfortunately (?) we always seemed to catch the red light and never saw how traffic flowed when approaching the green+stop combination. Everyone was at a stop (red light) when the light turned green. Maybe this double-stop is just a local standard or an attempt at mistake proofing. But then a block later...
Stop signs at a traffic light... then it occurs to me: STOP. English isn't even close to being an official language here. The mystery deepens. So perhaps some rebel youths brought a few stop signs back from America and decided to hang them up on the traffic lights as a joke, or to add a bit of flair to this particularly drab intersection. But the stop sign erected at the right side of the street looked like a rather professional job.
This country just keeps on giving when it comes to ambiguous visual controls. Here is the entrance to the hotel garage we drove into.
For bonus points, can you spot the ambiguous visual control in this picture?
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