Background: the inventor of the traffic rules

Rules are rarely fun, but without restraints would the traffic be chaos, and that was the ever. To an American businessman the gang in the street got sick and the road traffic regulations invented. Few know William Phelps Eno, but everyone his rules.

The best stuurlui staan aan wal: it is not known who that saying has been invented, but what we do know, is that the inventor of safety never has the car driven. Involved in the movement was William Phelps Eno (1858-1945), in contrast, already at an early age. Bill was only nine when he is on mother's hand surprised about a traffic jam in New York City. A coaches and paardenchaos, that is, because we write, 1867, and Henry Ford would milk even cows on the farm of his parents. Not that anyone was that notion took of the little William, because it was not until after the turn of the century before in NYC something of a highway. The gang on the street was bigger than ever, and Eno was his childhood not forgotten. He wrote an article in which he argued for a legal working rules, clear communication, and enforcement. There was butter to the fish: shortly thereafter, he wrote himself a set of regulations and workplace travel plans, not only for New York, but also Paris and London.

That was nothing to be asked. On Columbus Circle, the famous roundabout at the southwest corner of Central Park, you could in those days to speak with cola and chips on your folding chair accident. Traffic teemed there, criss-crossing and sometimes against each other in a total anarchy. Eno thought that now everyone in a circle in the same direction, clockwise, the square had to be: the world's first roundabout was a fact. Two years later, the chaos around the Parisian Arc de Triomphe in the same way resolved and also Picadilly Circus in London was to Eno's plan decorated.

Other ideas of William Phelps Eno of himself or where he worked - which we now take for granted, are traffic lights, one-way streets, traffic signs, driving on the right, fines, vluchtheuvels, vehicle registration and driver's license. Eno was after the First world War by the French even military distinguished, because the traffic system had been created to 60,000 soldiers in time of Verdun, general P├ętain, the German advance to Paris was standing.

William Phelps Eno never took place behind the wheel, he distrusted cars

In addition to the road traffic thought Eno also think about other forms of transport. He devised a subway system for New York and was involved with the shipping industry and the development of railways. In the twenties he did a study on the future developments in the aviation industry, for which a strong growth is provided. Also the current Eno Center for Transportation, a Us think-tank, comes out of his sleeve. The funny thing is that William Phelps Eno himself never behind the wheel sat down; he distrusted cars.

Eno was not the only one that the flow of traffic and road safety improved with his inventiveness. His compatriot Edward Hines also wore a lot of pebbles to what we have today as normal. In the 1890s he founded in Michigan, the Good Roads Organisation, which strongly made for better road links in the countryside, initially for cyclists. Through his efforts and those of Henry Ford, was taken in 1909 in Detroit, the first whole mile uncovered constructed. According to tradition, was a dairyman with a leaking milk churn in which he had the idea brought of the interrupted half-way line. Maybe it frustrated him that his new invention during the icy winters in Michigan under a blanket of snow disappeared, as also the invention of the snow removal is on the Hines' account.

And we? Has the Netherlands, yet the country of order and regularity, than nothing at all contributed to the modern movement? Sure did: the Dutchman Maus Gatsonides invented the speed camera.

This story appeared earlier in the Season 36/2018.