One of the defining moments of my traffic safety education was a story in Road & Track magazine a million years ago which reported on research indicating that traffic drives at the speed of the road was designed to handle, not according to a random number painted on a sign by the side of the road.
No, it doesn't go as fast as it possibly can - drivers seem to have a built-in sense of survival.
But if the road is designed to accommodate, say, 100 km/h, that's about the speed at which most drivers will choose to drive.
I don't know if that research has been replicated since.
But a perfect example of the concept is currently on display on the 401 eastbound near the Hurontario Street construction. It remains three lanes wide as you enter the signed construction area, although there is no evidence that any construction is being done, other than that the 'Jersey Barrier' - the trapezoidal cross-section concrete wall - is moved closer to the edge of the left lane, thereby removing the shoulder.
The speed limit changes at that point from 100 km/h to 80 km/h.
But does anybody even lift from the 120 - 130 most everyone is doing there?
I think it supports that old research - the road doesn't change, it still looks like it was designed to be driven at 130, and that's what most people will drive.
Unless there's a police car there, but with no shoulder to park on, that's unlikely.
A neighbour of mine - the person who got me into this business in the first place, as a matter of fact - became a municipal politician. At the time, the municipality had recently rebuilt a stretch of a major road to 'modern' standards - wider, smoother, with bigger shoulders - but they found cars were going faster than traffic planners wanted.
To paraphrase the Kevin Costner movie catch phrase, "Build it faster and they will come faster."
She asked me if there was anything they could do to slow people down.
"Sure!'' I said.
"Dig a one foot wide, one foot deep ditch across the road every 100 yards or so."
"We can't do that!" she exclaimed.
"I know," I replied.
"But you asked me how to slow people down, and that's the only way to do it. Even speed bumps just provide a challenge to good suspension."
So if you want people to drive slow, don't build fast roads.
If however you do want people to get where they are going quickly, efficiently and safely - and isn't that what our road network is supposed to do? - then build good roads, apply relevant speed limits, and use our scarce police resources to ensure people drive properly on them.
Yes, it really is that easy.
So, why don't we do it?
Maybe you should ask our new Minister of Transportation, the Honourable Glen Murray.
I already have, and am awaiting his response...