Stupid Implementation of Useful Information

The Washington State Department of Transportation maintains extremely useful rest areas for drivers. The WSDOT website has a list of rest areas with good filters.

However, the WSDOT folks are getting an award from this site for Stupid Implementation of useful information.

Every mile on the Interstate is a milepost sign with a number. These are extremely useful markers. And that they appear every mile helps a driver know where he or she is.

WSDOT, however, lists and sorts the rest areas by name. This has to be one of the stupidest methods to present information to drivers. How many drivers know where “Bow Hill” rest area is? Maybe those who live nearby know. But visitors to the state won’t know. Check out this screen capture taken July 27, 2021.

Only after clicking on the rest area name does information appear that includes the milepost number. Finding which rest area is next on the road is a total hit and miss activity. We gave up driving north from Portland on July 26, 2021.

The other problem is this: not all rest areas have their names posted. For example, driving north on Interstate 5 from Tacoma you see a couple signs for a rest area ahead. Nowhere on these signs is the name of the rest area. So, rest area names on the website is nearly useless information.

There is an easy fix to this, if the bureaucrats are willing to get out of their own heads and pretend to be drivers.

Precede each rest area with the mile post number, such as:

Mile Post 054: Toutle River – I-5 northbound

Mile Post 238: Bow Hill – I-5 northbound

or use MP 054:, MP 238:.

By padding each mile with a leading zero for number less than 100, the sort will always be correct.