Friday 12 November 2021

'Slow Cat Crossing' sign is nice

I like this sign in Kentucky, USA. The picture is used to illustrate an article about toxoplasmosis infecting wildlife and because the domestic cat, once only, deposits toxoplasma gondii oocysts in their faeces they are criticised for spreading a 'brain disease' to wildlife. This criticism happens all the time but nobody takes any notice and I'm pleased about that because the stories are often exaggerated. To emphasis 'brain disease' in that way is clickbait and scaremongering.

Slow cat crossing sign
Photo: Timothy D. Easley (AP)

But the picture is nice I think because it shows a respect for the cat on this person's property. I believe that this is a private road. Perhaps it has to be a private road because I don't think the authorities would allow anybody to erect a sign like that on a public road in America. I'm not sure about the rules in America in that regard but it is certain to be prohibited (wrong? Please tell me). I think it would be effective, however in slowing people down especially when passing through small villages in the UK. There've been numerous stories of cats killed on the roads in villages because the cars are speeding.

RELATED: Young male cats far more likely to be involved in road traffic accidents

One of the advantages in London, UK is that there is now a universal 20 mph speed limit across much of London and its environs. So all traffic over a very large area is limited to 20 mph. I think that this will save the lives of domestic cats notwithstanding that it is highly irritating because a lot of the roads are quite suited to 30 mph.

The 20 mph speed limit gives domestic cats greater forewarning of the arrival of a vehicle and therefore time to get out of the way if they are on the road. I have this gut feeling that cat lives are being saved but there will be no survey or analysis of this so we will never know.

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