Sunday, August 14, 2011

Interstate Dictionary

Courtesy Google Images
Gawker Delay (noun) /ɡɑːkə(r) dɪˈleɪ/

Traffic backed up for miles because people are slowing down to look at an accident scene. The subsequent delay may be an hour or longer depending on the traffic.

The congestion,if in the lane running opposite to the accident and on a summertime Friday afternoon, is unnecessary and thus unbearable. "People are people," shrugs Fred Feldman, a New York traffic engineer. "Even when a guy knows that rubbernecking made him sit for half an hour in traffic, when he gets up to the scene he'll be damned if he's not going to take a look himself." (NY Times Archive [1993])

Alternate names: rubber necking, gaper block


Came across this word courtesy Hari Acharya. An accident on I-495 South on 12th August significantly slowed the northbound traffic, something we could have done without in our drive to Mt. Katahdin, Maine.

As a side note with irrelevant information, the second car in our group was a Toyota Sienna.


  1. It's a universal affair we have seen and accepted as a part of life, but didn't know it had this name :)

  2. mp... some things cut across all racial and ethnic boundaries.

  3. @mp: satyam. ithinu saayippu perum itto?? haha

  4. Thanks SiS.
    Nice one maybe, but not when one has to face its brunt :(