Blimey. I know I was complaining about the pedestrian crossing lights at Vauxhall Cross yesterday, but I wasn’t expecting them to switch them off altogether. The lights were out coming and going today, and it’s a tricky junction at the best of times. Particularly coming out of the station where the traffic comes under the railway line and approaches the crossing on a blind bend. The technique this evening seemed to be for everyone to gather on the curb until enough pedestrians had built up to form some sort of a moral imperative. Then we waited, watching the people on the traffic island, who could at least see what was coming. Once one of them was bold – or foolish, or homicidal – enough to step out into a gap, then we all surged across, working on the assumption that they wouldn’t run us all down. The effect is similar to those wildlife programmes where the migrating zebra have to cross the crocodile-infested Zambesi, but with fewer stripes.
Anyway, that is definitely the last time I say anything disparaging about the lights on that particular junction. Oh, and drivers? If you’re approaching a crossing andthe lights are out and a pedestrian decides to cross rather than spend the rest of their life on a traffic island – don’t honk. They’ve got at least as much right of way in the circumstances as you do.