Tricky timber traffic light stack - Steven's Story


About 25 years ago I was travelling north up Punt Rd. I was stopped at Toorak Rd by a red light. I was the first car at the lights so could see eastbound down Toorak Rd. The traffic was heavy and a steady stream of cars crossed Punt Rd. Three cars entered the intersection: a sedan, a station wagon and a ute. The ute had some carry bars on it, to hold a large amount of timber above the driver’s cab and the tray – probably a builder’s or carpenter’s vehicle.  

The sedan came to a halt immediately after crossing Punt Rd. The station wagon didn't notice at first so had to brake suddenly. This forced the ute, immediately behind it, to also brake suddenly.  At this point, the load of timber on the carry bars, all strapped together, slid forward off the ute and straight through the back window of the station wagon.

I will always remember the look on the station wagon driver’s face as he got out of the car to inspect the load of timber now sticking out of his car. It was one of utter disbelief. The length of the wood meant that although it had slid forward, it was still resting on the front carry bar of the ute, so the two vehicles were now joined together by the shared load of timber. 

At that point my light turned green and I continued on my way, though the south bound lanes were now blocked.