Concept of the month October 2022: Hatched markings


This time around, I am writing about a word that has fascinated me for years. It refers to what seems to be a sacred part of a public road. Anyone could ride it, yet they leave it alone. It commonly precedes a gore point, a triangular unpaved zone in a bifurcation or exit. I came across the word in a traffic sign, which is quite rare. No wonder it stated that on this occasion, crossing was permitted: hatched markings.


So, what do these hatched markings entail, apart from being a sacred part of the infrastructure amidst racing traffic? They bring peace. They provide calm and space. They are an oasis. Just for a moment, they make war and misery go away. Their plane surface reflect their neutrality, they don’t sow discord. They offer second chances to those who are late entering or exiting the road. Hatched markings provide hope in confusing times.


From the sky, hatched markings look somewhat like a zebra crossing. This is reflected by the Spanish word, which could be translate as ‘zebrafied road surface’. An area where drivers should be at the brakes. In Dutch, they call it a ‘driving-out surface’. Literally speaking, that makes perfect sense. One should drive out of or away from this area. But please let’s not interpret it as ‘expelling’, as more enough people are being driven out of their homes and countries nowadays. Drive with care.


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