Traffic and road safety was a prominent issue on the editorial page of The Interior Journal 40 years ago, on May 24, 1973.
A dark editorial cartoon by Jerry Alexander depicted the grim reaper preparing his scythe for highway fatalities; a businessman made a wildly incorrect prediction about the future of automobile manufacturing; and a local columnist discussed the creation of the Camp Nelson bridge that crosses the Kentucky River between Garrard and Jessamine counties.
Here's the businessman's prediction and the excerpt from Robert T. Baughman's regular column, "Hereabouts:"
Auto body repair may go the way of the buggy whips and high-button shoes, if industry forecasters' predictions come true.
In 1985 you might be driving a car that doesn't dent, scratch, or break on moderate impact, according to Thomas E. Salisbury, president of the Firestone Synthetic Rubber & Latex Co., because car makers will rely heavily on rubber.
"Rubberized impact-absorbing bumper systems and grilles are just the beginning," he contends. "In future years, large quantities of rubber and rubber-plastic alloys will be used to construct automobile bodies."
By the 1980's rubber and plastic-modified rubber will be used in panels for doors, trunks and hoods, as well as many of the smaller parts, he predicted.
…Brooklyn Bridge in New York was opened May 24, 1883, and this reminds me that work is progressing on the new bridge across the Kentucky River at Camp Nelson. When they started on the Camp Nelson bridge, I was sure that they could never get the supports connected, but now I believe they can do it. It will make the road better, however, the bridge may be so high that I will be afraid to drive over it.
- - -
Interior Time Machine is curated by IJ Editor Ben Kleppinger. Send comments to email@example.com.