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Drivetime Mahatma by Frank Fellone
RSS for Drivetime Mahatma by Frank Fellone

A weekly column about Arkansas drivers and the roads they traverse.
Send your questions to Mahatma@arkansasonline.com

Drivetime Mahatma: Speeders' phone data not tapped

posted: 05/19/2018 3:10 a.m. Discuss

Dear Mahatma: You have written about how the Arkansas Department of Transportation uses a Google service to track the speed of vehicles via cellphones in those vehicles, and then uses the data to tell users of the iDrive website when highways are in slowdown mode. Does the Arkansas State Police use the same or similar program for speed enforcement? -- Cynical Guy

Drivetime Mahatma: Van spaces in lots soon decals-only

posted: 05/12/2018 2:44 a.m. Comments 9

Dear Mahatma: Parking is difficult for us in wheelchairs who need a wide area to open our lifts. The law that says van-accessible spots are for those who use wheelchairs was improved by Act 799 of 2017. Decals are now required to park in van-accessible spots. The law will be enforced starting Jan. 1. Any exposure you can give is appreciated. -- Carol

Drivetime Mahatma: Temp tags get abused across U.S.

posted: 05/05/2018 3:14 a.m. Discuss

Dear Mahatma: I have found the ongoing discussion on temporary tags very timely. After a 1,200-mile trip recently, I was surprised how many paper tags are out there in the states I traveled. -- Kathleen

DRIVETIME MAHATMA: I-30's holes on summer repairs list

posted: 04/28/2018 4:30 a.m. Comments 2

Dear Mahatma, one with knowledge of all things: Can you predict if Interstate 30 north of the Arkansas River bridge will ever have the potholes, buckles and cracks repaired, including the I-30 and Interstate 40 interchange on- and off-ramps? Or must we who have blown tires and bent rims wait until we reach our golden years when and if ever when the new mega-interstate is built? -- Old Jerry

Drivetime Mahatma: A theory: Scofflaws tax-addled

posted: 04/21/2018 3:24 a.m. Comments 2

A wise perceptive letter was printed on the Voices page the other day. It was written by John Brayman of Little Rock. He remarked on our column about people who drive with expired temporary tags. Our advice was to get information from the tag, visit a city attorney and ask that a warrant be issued.

DRIVETIME MAHATMA: U.S. 67/167 'corduroy' on fix-it list

posted: 04/14/2018 4:30 a.m. Discuss

Dear Mahatma: Is there any plan to repair or reconstruct the outside (truck) lane between Cabot and Searcy on U.S. 67/167? Some of it has become quite corduroy in places and very rough to drive on. -- Letter Writer

Drivetime Mahatma: DRIVETIME MAHATMA: Left turns on avenue often blind

posted: 04/07/2018 4:30 a.m. Discuss

Dear Sir: Why is it so difficult to see to turn left heading south on University Avenue. If there is a car in the opposite turn lane you must wait until it has turned to see. My main difficulty is between 12th Street and Asher. -- Derek

Drivetime Mahatma: DRIVETIME: Here's how state's online map can report live traffic conditions

updated: 04/02/2018 4:30 a.m. Discuss

Sir: How does IDrive know when there are traffic slowdowns at intersections, interstate highways and other locations around the state? -- Buller from Conway

DRIVETIME MAHATMA: How to report bad driver of state car

posted: 03/24/2018 4:30 a.m. Comments 2

Dear Mahatma: Is there a website or a phone number to report state-owned vehicles speeding on the interstate? -- Solid Citizen

DRIVETIME: U.S. 67/167 road work getting old

posted: 03/17/2018 4:30 a.m. Comment 1

Dear Mahatma: Got a call from an Arkansas State University teacher who lives in Little Rock and commutes to Jonesboro. (Insert several exclamation points.) She's fed up with the construction work through Jacksonville that's been going on for years. I never see anybody working, and the cops don't patrol the area. She is scared to drive slow through there because people tailgate. How much longer? -- Old (and growing older) Friend.

Drivetime Mahatma: Computer, not swami, opens bids

posted: 03/10/2018 3:10 a.m. Discuss

Dear Mahatma: In the newspaper, the Arkansas Department of Transportation is always "opening low bids" on projects worth a gazillion shekels. This amazes me. Do they have a staff swami who holds the bids to his head and declares "This is the one?" How does the Mahatma feel about having a swami working his town? -- Impressed

Drivetime Mahatma: Use 2 lanes to merge, go in peace

posted: 03/03/2018 2:44 a.m. Comments 3

Dear Mahatma: I often encounter the convergence of two lanes of a highway or access road to one, with signage seeming to give ownership of the resulting single lane to one row of vehicles. The result is often a long line of cars proceeding slowly in one lane and refusing entry to those in the other. Wouldn't peace and safety be enhanced by requiring both lanes to merge carefully rather than attempting to give precedence to one or the other? -- One Seeking Guidance

Drivetime Mahatma: No signs on on-ramp? Accelerate

posted: 02/24/2018 2:35 a.m. Comments 2

Dear Mahatma: I have tried several times to get a definitive answer to this question and hope you can help. If you turn from a county road with a speed limit of 35 mph onto an entry ramp that is approximately a half-mile long, merging into a divided highway with a posted speed limit of 60 mph, what is the speed limit on the ramp if no speed limit sign is posted? -- Nick

Drivetime Mahatma: Sweepers, hands snag road debris

posted: 02/17/2018 2:55 a.m. Comments 2

Sir: With the frequent use of concrete bunker-like lane dividers on our four- and six-lane highways, the trash problem increases, an unintended consequence, perhaps, of that design. How is the above addressed? Slow-moving street sweepers, human or mechanical, must be hazards. -- Jennie

Drivetime Mahatma: Buckle up: 'Nuff said about that

posted: 02/10/2018 2:48 a.m. Comments 2

Oh Wise One: In viewing deadly traffic accidents published almost daily in the newspaper, I've noticed an unusually large number of these untimely ascensions to the hereafter have occurred with the occupants being ejected from their vehicle. In your humble opinion and after contacting your multiple sources, do you think all these people are unbelted or are we seeing a certain percentage of seat-belt failures? -- Puzzled But Belted

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