Here then is a video at about 16:50 on a weekday evening. The tax dodger is cycling up Nugent Hill, while some children are returning home in the other direction. Given the 15% gradient, that family is earning its school dinners.
Then, down to Arley Hill to count the no. of vehicles phoning or texting in the traffic jam. Arley Hill cuts through from Cotham to Cheltenham Road, where, if you tuck into the bus lane and then go up to turn left towards Ashley Road, gets you to the M32 at the St Pauls Roundabout -without having to go to the bearpit roundabout or nearby. This makes it a nice little route from Redland and Clifton to the M32 at peak hours -too nice, and too widely known.
If you look, there are a set of different actions taking place in the vehicles
- despair. driver holding onto the handle above the door, disbelieving that it can take so long. Tourist?
- phone: talk, text or facebook.
- eat. Not just junk food either -a couple of people are eating prepared meals from plastic containers. These are locals who know it takes 10-15 minutes to traverse Arley hill at peak hours.
- enjoy the music. Only a couple of people are doing this -but they seem happy.
It comes out to seven vehicles: P217UWS, HG10AKP, KM59KML, FA04VZL, G869UAM, KF54EHH, BF08DJP.
Fluke! the Cliftonians cry! Pure Chance!
Possibly. Lets try that again, shall we?
Heres the next video, from the bottom and back up again.
There's been enough of an interval that the cars at the tail of the previous survey are now at the front: KF54EHH, texting at the end of the last video, is now the second car in line, still texting happily. Now the car behind, MF56VJC, has joined in.
Carrying on up, we encounter the van BF05VZT, gsfcarparts.com, a large grey van WV13YHA on the phone, and then the white BMW WN13CCE with the driver texting.
The driver in the "don't cook just eat" car is hand-rolling a cigarette -false alarm.
After the speed bump comes the renault megane HV03WNR, then, after a small gap, the Honda Civic WJ06ZBN with its driver speaking on his phone. Finally, just after the RAC van comes white van W9MWM. At this point the vehicles are moving, so the driver here is left with a problem: how to text while driving over a speed bump.
The solution is obvious, put the phone onto the steering wheel and hold the wheel while you text with your thumbs.
After that: no more. Note that the normal scapegoats -taxis and minicabs- are not joining in. They work in the car, there's no need for them to text ahead saying "I am stuck in the traffic jam that stretches from Arley Hill to M32 and which appears here every evening".
Looking at the numbers from that last video and comparing with Clifton, in that initial stretch from Nugent Hill to the lights, there are 13 cars, of which five are on the phone: one speaking, four texting.
Thats 38% of our sample set. Discount the speaking and focus on texting: 30%.
Those are numbers clifton doesn't even come close to. Here we have a line of traffic and over one driver in three is on the phone.
Clifton? DNC: Did Not Compete.