I’m a bit late in posting today. For reasons, see my previous entry
Following on from my rant yesterday, I’ve been thinking a bit further on the subject.
Reading back, you’d think that I put all accidents down to inexperience. I don’t. There are many reasons for the carnage on our roads.
The first is the roads themselves and signposting. The roads have improved a lot over the last few years but still leave a lot to be desired.
Signposting is a laugh. Again, I mention my experiences in France. There you don’t really need maps. Everywhere is clearly signposted with advance warnings of all junctions. They warn you when speed limits are about to happen, so you don’t whack around a bend at 90 and suddenly find you are in a 50 limit. Here everything is confusing, and a confused driver is a dangerous driver.
There are also several classes of driver in this country.
The first is the Ego driver.
These are the ponces and gobshites who drive around usually in 4 wheel drives, but occasionally in company provided executive cars. They think because they have a few bob that they own the place. They think that being behind an “ordinary” car makes them somehow inferior. If they want to double park outside the newsagents, then that is their right. Speed restrictions don’t really apply to them, only to the common people [i.e. the rest of us]. They are a very dangerous crowd as their vehicles tend to be big and strong. Therefore they are unlikely to come out of an accident badly. I can’t say the same for their victims.
They tend to drive in the fast lane all the time because, of course they do own the road.
The next is the “it-doesn’t-apply-to-me” brigade.
We see them all the time. Mostly motor cyclists and pedal cyclists. They think that rules of the road apply only to cars.
Pedal cyclists are particularly bad and they are the most vulnerable. Traffic lights mean nothing, especially pedestrian lights. Lights are for wimps [both traffic lights and the kind that shows you exist in the dark]. One way streets? What are they? Cycle lanes? Fancy bits of paintwork on the roads, but they aren’t for real cyclists.
Motor cyclists are in it for the speed. A real motor cyclist has to travel at maximum throttle at all times. If there are cars ahead in several lanes, then just weave through them without slowing. It’s clever, and you make the motorists jealous. And the louder your bike, then the better.
They tend to drive in any old lane that suits them, and that will change from second to second.
Then there’s the Doddery Driver.
They used to drive Morris Minors in the good old days. That was good because you could spot them a mile off. Now they tend to drive any car of the small variety. This is confusing because there are a lot of good drivers driving small cars too.
The Doddery Driver does not know what other people are doing. They don’t know what they are doing. They pootle along in the hope that they will get there in the end. They are not sure what Stop signs mean, and are likely to stop suddenly in the middle of the road, because they have just seen Grace from the hairdressers.
They tend to drive in the fast lane all the time because they don’t know the difference. They will stay in the fast lane until the very last second before cutting across the other lanes to their exit.
The Boy Racer.
We all know them. They drive souped up VW Golfs and the like, with “go faster” stripes, wind spoilers, purple lights underneath [are they for catching insects?] and of course the mandatory loud thumping music. Tinted windows are preferred.
They think that because they have these cars, that that makes them brilliant fast drivers. Wrong. That makes them stupid drivers in stupid looking [and sounding] cars. They are probably the most likely to end up wrapped around a tree trunk. [And who says Darwin is wrong?].
They always drive in the fast lane because they think they are faster than everyone else. Wrong again. Everyone else is just driving at a sensible speed.
There are a few other categories [such as the dreaded Tractor Driver, the Trucker and the Taxi Driver] but I don’t want to bore you.
I’m not offering any solutions to the above. However, if you read the above and recognise yourself, then please do yourself a favour. Please think hard. Is your life that worthless?
Footnote to the above…..
I was a refugee for the day [thanks, E.S.B.!!] and did a fair bit of driving. I met ALL the above, and all were true to form.
I was parked at one stage and a bitch in a 4WD reversed into me. Bang. I went and knocked on her window.
“Oh, don’t tell me I hit your car?” says she.
“Yes you did hit my car you moronic bitch. Have you a clue how to drive? Are you so unaware of what you are doing that you can hit someone and not know it?”
Well, actually I didn’t say that. What I said was “Yes, you did hit my car, as if you didn’t know. Luckily there is no damage. Now can you move forward so I can get out?”.