Motorists got a shock this week while driving on the Viale near to Porta San Mamolo. Roadworks had commenced at the intersection for the entrance to the Carabinieri station, but traffic was often intermittent due to the attention this robotic worker was receiving.
One driver thought it was so funny he got out to take some photos. He said, “This is incredible. I’ve never seen anything like it.” And before jumping in his car again as the lights turned green, he laughed before adding, “I want one for my garden.”
Indeed, it is a strange sight as Marco (the name given by his co-workers) actually moves. His robotic arm waves the flag up and down, while its head turns to meet the eyes of curious drivers passing by.
Road worker: “Furthermore, he’s a distraction to drivers and even to us… People keep stopping to take photos, which slows us down and creates chaos for drivers.”
However, Marco’s colleagues and trade unions are not so enthusiastic at his job prospects. A worker told us, “It all seems funny but really, Marco is replacing one of our workers who would normally direct traffic. So, there’s an element of safety at stake. Furthermore, he’s a distraction to drivers and even to us.” He stressed, “People keep stopping to take photos, which slows us down and creates chaos for drivers.”
A spokesperson from CGIL feared that it wont simply stop there. “Once they find other uses for these dummies, they’ll start replacing even more people. They’re a hazard to future employees.” No-one from the comune was available for comment.
Angela, an office worker stopped though to give her appraisal. “It’s fantastic. I can see that road users will take notice of this new initiative and may be be more careful at least around areas where traffic is restricted for a limited period.” When pushed on how this technological idea may affect job loses, she replied succinctly, “That’s progress for you. Move on or die, no?”