For commuters used to driving the nearly 24 miles of the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway, these cheeky phrases have become part of their daily routine, displayed in bright letters on the bridge’s electronic traffic boards.
When the phrase the dark aide is mentioned, it could be in reference to many different subjects. For example: Star Wars (i.e. Darth Vader), Transformers movie (ship’s name in the television series), Physicists (an affiliation of researching dark matter), Tales from the Dark Side (1990 horror movie), several different books, or albums (Dark Side of the Moon from Pink Floyd). Safe driving is usually not in those that immediately come to mind but it should. According to a study conducted by e-driving, aggressive driving contributed to the 5 million accidents in 2018. Over 50% of fatal collisions are caused by aggressive driving.
What should you do when confronted by an aggressive driver?
Stay calm and relaxed
Make every attempt to get into the other lane safely
Don’t escalate the situation
Do not challenge an aggressive driver by speeding up or attempting to hold your position in your travel lane
Avoid eye contact
Ignore harassing gestures and refrain from returning them
Aggressive driving leads to the dark side. If you encounter an aggressive driver on the Causeway Bridge, contact Causeway Police Dispatch at 504-835-3116 (or *CP on a cellular phone). Although we cannot control how others drive, we can control our own reaction.
Anyone that has traveled the Causeway Bridge, or anywhere else in the area by large bodies of water, recently has seen the unusually large swarms of midges. The bugs can be seen on hundreds of pictures posted on Social Media recently. The midges have become such a local problem that the City of New Orleans sent out a press release. Among the information given, experts said:
An inspection of the sites where the calls were coming from…. revealed that the swarming insects were in fact non-biting midges, family Chironomidae, a fly that superficially resembles mosquitoes.
Non-biting midges breed in water just like mosquitoes, but prefer polluted waters that are high in organic material. The larvae grow in the bottom of bodies of water, which may be lakes, ponds, streams, canals or even containers, and are usually red in color and are called bloodworms.
The adults mate in swarms soon after emerging from the pupae, after which they lay eggs on the water. Because the adults do not feed, they die after only 3 to 5 days.
Although the squished bugs are a nuisance, the good news is the midges are not harmful but, swarms spattering on windshields are problems. Over the weekend (June 15th and June 16th), Causeway received over 50 calls for assistance due to visibility. Causeway MAP and Police assisted commuters by providing water to refill windshield washers. If any commuters find themselves in a similar situation, contact 504-836-3116 (or *CP on most cellular phones) for help.