Friday, April 3

Fun Fact Friday -- Tope!

Today's Fun Fact is one of the first things we learned when we visited Mexico years ago.

Anyone who has ever traveled by bus or car in Mexico has seen a sign which looks something like this:

What is a "tope"? Well, it's pronounced TOH-peh and the English equivalent is "speed bump". But you've never seen a speed bump like this in the States!

A tope is designed to slow down traffic. It definitely does its job! Who needs a policeman parked on the side of the road with a radar detector? Just put a 6 inch tall cement hump in the road!

People around here make topes wherever they want to slow people down. The highway department puts topes at the entrance and exit of every small town along the road. In the States you see "Speed Zone Ahead" signs. Here you see "Tope a 100m". If you don't slow down in the States, you might get a ticket. If you hit one of these things going more than about 15 miles per hour, you will be airborn. I would call that self-critiquing behaviour!

In small, rural villages, residents sometimes put topes in front of their houses to slow traffic down. Here's the one we made last week to try to slow down the weekenders who love to go "off-roading" near our house. What do you think your neighbors would say if you suddenly decided to dig a trench across the road in front of your house? In the States you might get sued because someone spilled their coffee when they hit it!

It has succeeded in slowing people down a bit, and some people are avoiding the road all together! Yeah!

Yes, we have acclimated.

1 comment:

Jim said...

That's great! We don't need topes in front of our house. However, there's been quite the war over cement pillars on a nearby road. They're trying to keep out the big trucks. :)