Danger lurking

In my last post I forgot to mention I nearly got sideswiped coming to Kansas City.

It was on the Kansas Turnpike just east of the Topeka service plaza. I’m in the left lane, and some dumbass in a Ford Fiesta attempted to change lanes without looking. I gave him a good blast of my horn. If he had hit me, it really would have been bad, because I would have careened into the concrete barrier. The Turnpike does not have a median like most interstate highways in rural areas. The Turnpike was built before the interstate highway system came into existence (not by much), so the Turnpike is grandfathered from the existing standards. The Pennsylvania Turnpike also has no medians, instead concrete barriers for its long journey from the Ohio state line to Philadelphia.

I tried my best not to look at him as I drove east, and for the most part it was successful. I finally lost him at the toll plaza near Bonner Springs, since he was in a long line in one of the cash lines, and I zipped right through in the tag lane.

Good thing I have a toll tag for the Turnpike. It came in really handy today, when there were long backups in the ticket lane at Topeka and the cash lanes at Bonner Springs. Some days, the tag line is as long as the ticket/cash line, but today, that definitely wasn’t the case, especially at the east end.

Actually, the Turnpike does not end until two miles east of I-635, although no tolls are collected between that point and the K-7/US 73 exit at Bonner Springs. There used to be a toll booth at Bonner Springs, but when the Kansas Speedway opened in 2001, ridiculous backups became commonplace, so the Kansas Turnpike Authority moved the toll plaza to mile marker 217, six miles west of the Bonner Springs exit.

The last thing I need is an accident. The Chevy is almost paid off, and my Allstate agent, Phil Aitken, informed my mother yesterday that my yearly insurance premium is dropping from almost $2,500 to $1,080. I don’t want another claim, even if the accident wouldn’t be my fault.

About David

I am a sportswriter for a group of weekly newspapers in small towns across northern Kansas. I grew up in New Orleans, went to college at LSU and wandered in the wilderness until Hurricane Katrina finally put me on the path to my current job.

Posted on December 20, 2014, in Personal and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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