What’s the rush?


To the Editor:

I sent the following letter to the boards of selectmen in Chilmark and West Tisbury:

This afternoon around 5:15 pm, I was driving down Middle Road from Beetlebung Corner to West Tisbury. I was observing the speed limit and enjoying the scenery, which is gorgeous. Between Tabor House and Tea Lane, a tour bus came up behind me and started tailgating. It was an obvious attempt at intimidation and to make me speed up. I happen to love Middle Road and the views, as well as the residents, animals, and birds along that peaceful Island road, and I also know how much the residents and farmers along that road appreciate any effort to prevent reckless driving. So I maintained the speed limit and ignored the bus grill in the rearview mirror.

By Hillman’s I came up behind a bicyclist, and with over a mile of very narrow and curvy hilly road, I had to slow down and stay behind. There is nowhere to pass, and there was traffic in the other direction. The bus tailgated me all the way to the end of Middle Road. At the intersection in West Tisbury with Music Street, I turned right, and so did the bus. I proceeded through the village, and the bus was stuck waiting for traffic. No matter, it caught up behind me by the intersection of Old Country Road (again I was doing 25, the speed limit) and Edgartown Road, and passed me with a total reckless disregard for safety in a rush and zoom of acceleration.

First of all, it is my understanding that there is a longstanding ban on tour buses on Middle Road, and also on Music Street. Obviously the driver either didn’t know or didn’t care. The tour-bus company operators need to have their memories refreshed. Also, overtaking a vehicle, and bikers/pedestrians/farm vehicles on narrow, winding country roads, or even on State Road in town, is dangerous. The driver should be lectured about that. This is an island; slow down and enjoy it.

Virginia C. Jones
West Tisbury