I saw one of my pet peeves on the way into work this morning. It's no secret that NYC has some seriously congested traffic. One of the things they do to try to make things flow better is that on major streets, there's no standing or parking during the morning and evening rush hours. This adds one or two lanes for the traffic to use. Hey, every little bit helps.
There are also traffic enforcement people out to keep those lanes clear. They chase people away if they try to stop or they write tickets if there's nobody there with the vehicle. But guess what else they do.
They pull their big ass van full of 8 traffic agents into the parking lane that they're supposed to be keeping clear so they have a nice comfy place to sit during their breaks. And the traffic builds up behind them as people try to merge back into the regular lanes to get around them. Where do I think they should put their van so it's out of the way? That's not my problem. They don't make any suggestions to me when they tell me I've gotta move my car...they just tell me I can't park there!
Know what's even worse? I can't tell you how many times I've seen the traffic agents pull up at a car that's illegally parked so they can write it a ticket. Do you think they pull up behind the car that's already blocking the lane? Or in front of the car that's already blocking the lane? No, of course they don't. Because if they did that, someone would have to drag his lazy ass out of the car to place the ticket on the windshield of the offending vehicle. No, they pull up next to the car they're ticketing and they sit there for a few minutes while they write the ticket so that once it's been written, one of them can just lean out the window and put the ticket on the car. Of course, while they're doing that, they're blocking a second lane of traffic.
Back when I worked in Pioneer square, we had a great view of the daily 4:15 pm towing of the cars, when they'd close the parking spots down to make traffic lanes. It was always a bit of a Laurel and Hardy comedy, especially when the car owner would come back to his/her spot just a minute or two after the tow.
I'm mean and small-minded, I know. ;)
Call up the watch commander or whoever at the preceinct.
There is a local guy in the area who delights in photos and videos of same to the preceinct and to local TV stations.
One time they tried to arrest him the video got on the air.
Even though the traffic agents are officially under NYPD's umbrella, the reality is that they're completely separate. The cops at the precinct couldn't give a rats ass what the traffic agents do.
OTOH, it would be totally sweet to watch a cop giving a traffic agent a ticket for parking in a No Standing zone. It'd never happen, but it'd be great fun to watch.
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