War on Cars Watch for April 17, 2019

Welcome to the War on Cars Watch, a weekly blog to bring together all the stories that affect motorists with regards to street planning such as road diets, and traffic calming as well as programs such as Vision Zero and Complete Streets.

Please read this blog and let us know what you think by commenting below! Check out the NMA’s War on Cars Watch Facebook Page where we feature a story a day!

NMA Communications Director Shelia Dunn compiles the list, and the italicized comments throughout the Watch comes from NMA Member Michael Jabbra (marked with an MJ). NMA Foundation Executive Director James C. Walker gives us his considerable wisdom at the end of this week’s list.

Information from April 10-16, 2019


MJ: The author of this article doesn’t want China to spy on our cars. I don’t want our government (federal, state, or municipal) or our corporations to do so either. And yes, hacking a lot of American cars would be a fun way for China or other hostile nations to cause a lot trouble in the United States without firing a shot. Strange that the Silicon Valley crowd never seems to be concerned about this.



MJ: Nobody, neither corporations nor governments, seem to take cybersecurity seriously. Of course, no one at the DMV will be fired or imprisoned or otherwise punished for this. The rest of us now have to watch out even more. Yay, DMV.









New York


MJ: Are they sure 2,000 signs are enough? Why not 4,000 or 10,000? Never miss a chance to nag drivers about their speed!


Rhode Island





Commentary from NMA Foundation Executive Director James C. Walker

The issues of shared scooters, bikes, electric-assist bikes, etc. have gotten very messy with a number of negatives that were not taken into account when they arrived.

If you really don’t want your travels to be tracked and entered into a database that can be hacked and/or sold, you have to sharply limit the ways you can be tracked. That means not having your cell phone on most of the time, not synching your phone to your car’s electronic systems, not allowing manufacturer systems like GM’s OnStar to be operative, paying tolls in cash wherever possible, not using systems like EXPass when there are other choices, etc. It is hard to achieve total anonymity, but you can limit the exposures to being in the databases.

RE: the Midland, MI road diet article: Road diets that increase accident rates can in no way be considered safety programs.

Portland lowered the limit on many streets from 25 to 20 and are likely to get the same results as in Boston – an actual change in travel speeds of 0.0 mph.

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