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Traffic Jam on М-10 "Liquidated" Yesterday Is Again on Its Place

Traffic Jam on М-10 "Liquidated" Yesterday Is Again on Its Place
04.12.2012

"Russia" is again in stoppers. Next jam was formed on M-10 in the second half of a day. As new agency RIA Novosti reports with reference to the drivers in the jam, movement is complicated in the Tver Region, near the town of Torzhok. Large jam which length according to EMERCOM of Russia reached 191 kilometers, was formed on the highway "Russia" on Friday, November, 30. Nearly four thousand trucks got stuck in the jam in the Tver Region. On Monday morning representatives of traffic police declared that movement on the highway was restored.

"Bypass road of Tver ended and we "stuck". We have been standing on one place for already four hours. We called EMERCOM, they told there that the truck broke somewhere, they can't pull it out. I don't know if it’s really so, but I talk with other drivers on handheld transceiver, all cars stand still and it means about 40 kilometers," — one of the drivers phoned to the agency.

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From editorial board: I heard a message about mega-jam on the way to Tver, though I was using other highway – I’ve just left in the night of the 30th and returned to dinner time on Monday. So information about events on the highway M-10 was added to own road impressions – also, by the way, not very iridescent.

The first thing which became evident – stressing of the role of EMERCOM, say, the rescuers will come now and everything will be normal. Rogozin even suggested to involve the army more widely in elimination of road problems – sure-fire decision as Shoygu who is obviously not capable to solve all problems of the army, aviation and fleet, will get engaged in his favorite thing - eliminations of consequences of other people’s slovenliness - with pleasure.

If it means that movement on the Russian roads in winter is already permanent state of emergency?

It turns out to be so. In any case, EMERCOM under no circumstances can solve transport problem of Russia which became emergency of the national scale.

I would add to impressions one more precedent:

Lawyer Alexander Zorin made a complaint to the Tverskoj court of Moscow on legality of actions of the capital mayor Sergey Sobyanin during recent three-day snowfall in the city, the applicant reported on Monday to RAPSI.

It’s stated in the document that from November, 28 to November, 30 there was situation which significantly complicated or even paralyzed traffic in the city as a result of snowfal.

"Mayor of Moscow Sergey Sobyanin, having information about road condition threatening safety and health of inhabitants of Moscow, normal functioning of life support systems of Moscow, traffic blocking, didn't take necessary measures for prevention of extreme circumstances and elimination of their consequences," — the lawyer specifies in his statement.

He also pays attention of the court that information made public by the capital governor about supposed absence of roads which didn’t move because of snow in the city testifies that he didn't control subordinates and didn't analyze lacks in their work.

We - Forum.Msk - didn't guess to go to court. After all it’s true - the authorities categorically aren't capable to solve road problems in essence. Any problem, even such routine as snow cleaning.

Let’s take, for example, federal highway M-4 "Don" which I traveled through during last three days. Together with M-10 which now stands still they form axis connecting regions of Russia from the North to the South in the direction where 90 percent of population of the country lives, where two thirds of economy is concentrated. It would seem, it has to be backbone enterprise as communication, as the railroad...

It’s not so, it is considered that having constructed more or less acceptable for the Third World country route, the power fulfilled its duty. Operation of this object of federal importance doesn't concern it at all. Though operational losses for economy are enormous, they are simply distributed among enterprises of small and medium business and aren't so noticeable. We don’t have a habit to start a suit against the state for each loss and we are wrong. 40 kilometers of trucks standing in the jam - how many delivered not in time and even deteriorated goods will we have?

Traffic jams are nothing - the state consciously makes trucks to delay on the border, the truck driver who passes border with Ukraine "for only one night" looks happy as a child as this procedure can last days and even weeks. Though this border is in general necessary to no one except customs officers and frontier guards. If we should talk about efficiency of economic policy after that?

The government simply doesn't understand all depth of a problem when the largest country of Europe simply remind of impassable space! They say ancient Hittites purposely didn't construct the roads that the enemy didn't pass. The enemy really didn't pass – Hittites disappeared from history without a trace though in the ancient time they had great state.

For example, highway M-10 is situated in the territory where snowfalls and frosting within nearly half a year is usual thing. Thus this highway connects two largest cities with population in 12 and 5 million and a number of regions which population is less but still all in all gives 10 million. The main freight traffic from Northern Europe runs on this highway. Unless there are no technical and organizational solutions allowing to lower or to exclude in general climatic risks?

Climate in Finland isn't better than ours, but there is no such horror there. The road equipment is distributed along highways and people work "depending on weather", not on the kick from administration. No one knows the Minister of Emergency Situations of Finland. I don't even mention that there are whole small towns for drivers at large crossroads, there the drivers can both to park the truck, to eat well, to spend night and even have fun - everything. What do we have? A sign of "a drunken fir-tree" and a platform poured over with lubricating oil at a roadside, plastic toilet at best.

Why not to enter traffic service like air traffic one on federal highways? We had enough brains to establish turnstiles of paid sites of roads, why not then to monitor and accompany cars? Especially on highways beyond the Urals and on Far North? After all it’s a commonplace to die there in winter on the highway... Then it would be at least clear why they took a fare. And, by the way, free WiFi throughout federal road – also safety requirement. In our country even mobile communication doesn’t work steadily everywhere.

Highway M-4 is also situated in places where snowfalls are not rarity, but the most part of the road runs along the steppe. There the road often becomes impassable due not to the snow falling from above, but to snow drifts when snow is brought by the wind with a high speed and even smallest obstacle becomes the reason of formation of huge snowdrifts - at the clear sky.

How do you think, how many protection fences are placed alongside the new, "Olympic" piste? Not a meter! While they placed everywhere metal fenders meeting with which for a car and the driver means deadly risk. Certainly, every winter these fenders turn into enormous snowdrifts reducing road cloth at least by 1 strip.

There are also heavy rains in steppes, they even can turn the road into the river and visibility to zero in few minutes. You think there are drains on the road? Or the road cloth absorbs moisture? Aha...

We shouldn’t forget about the winds – which are capable to take a car down from the road. Sites where removal from the road because of the wind is possible are known. There is also road sign warning about strong lateral wind. There are a lot of such dangerous places in Finland. While it seems that there are no such places on the highway M-4!

One more question - safety. There are chains of “spending the night” cars every night on illuminated sites. I don’t say that the number of illuminated sites is too little. After all in south regions of the country the fogs are so dense that nothing can be seen... Why not to organize safe lodging for the drivers at night? What’s the obstacle to do it? There are a lot of traffic police posts, but none of them has big asphalted platform for a lodging. It seems there’s nothing easier.

It would seem, everything can be solved. There is nothing difficult in it. While nothing’s changing. It isn't necessary either to the government, or local administration, police. EMERCOM needs to raise a rating. While EMERCOM enters the game when there’s some emergency situation. So, there are no structures which are interested in such state of things when there are less emergency situations?

Just think - the first snowfall of the winter not only stopped movement in the capital, but also created huge jams on all access highways to Moscow - it is possible to say that ordinary snowfall paralyzed the largest transport knot of the country. Paralyzed - as always. All roads where snow fell stopped. Simply snow which fell every winter, which capacity is one and the same on average. The great power which sent people into space and Putin into G7 cann’t cope with it.

Anatoly Baranov

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