Killing two birds with one stone


It appeared as though the man had simply seen a need for someone to assist motorists while the traffic lights were out and stepped in. Some applauded the man while others condemned him – saying he was being reckless and irresponsible. What if there had been an accident as a result of this man’s actions? What if somebody had died?

These are all valid questions. While it is amazing that this man wanted to help, trained pointsmen should have been there, not an untrained individual.

That said … if there is a need and someone is willing … why do we not train this man? For one, he would be empowered, and secondly, motorists would get some relief when traffic lights were out during peak-hour traffic.

There is clearly a need for more manpower on Johannesburg’s roads. The Metro police don’t seem to be able to keep up with the volume of traffic and the drivers who simply don’t obey the rules of the road. Using people who are unemployed to direct traffic (after they have been trained and equipped, obviously) or to remove illegal advertising seem to make perfect sense – doesn’t it?

If the City were to implement something such as this, not only would we be getting a few people off the streets, we would be assisting them with new skills which would, hopefully, encourage them not to go into a life of crime. We would also be aiding with traffic congestion because, let’s be honest, we all know that out-of-order traffic lights will be something we are going to have to accept for a while.

Watch a video of the man directing traffic

I am no expert when it comes to traffic control, but I do believe that ordinary citizens hold the solutions to making Joburg a better place.

Let’s open the discussion for debate. Do you think my suggestion would work or do you have a better solution?


Megan Tyack

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