It is a fact that 98% of all accidents in this country are caused by Other People.
The other 2% are the solo artists who manage to wrap themselves around a telegraph pole at two in the morning when there is no one else around. They are invariably teenagers, who are merely setting out to prove that Darwin is right.
For the rest of us, it is always the Other Bloke [or woman] that causes the accident.
Other People can broadly be divided into two categories – those that are driving cars/buses/lorries etc and those that aren’t. I will refer to the latter as Pedestrians, even though cyclists and motor cyclists are included.
Pedestrians are a great nuisance on Irish roads. They have tried to obtain rights, but fortunately they have only gotten as far as getting the odd Pedestrian Crossing installed. Irish motorists, of course, are delighted with these crossings as they afford a great opportunity to mow down a few more Pedestrians. The government has now started installing Pedestrian Bridges, as their income tax revenue was being affected.
The great rule of Irish driving is the POP rule – Priority Over Pedestrians.
Motorists have complete rule of the road and associated footpaths. Footpaths are there to be parked on and any pedestrian who complains should be run over immediately. Similarly, if a motorist actually wants to drive on the footpath he or she is fully entitled to do so.
Cyclists are a huge hazard on Irish roads and are rightly treated with the utmost contempt. They rarely, if ever use lights or adhere to the rules, so they get all they deserve. In particular, those people who insist on wearing that nauseating nylon cycling gear with a bunch of bananas of their head. It is perfectly acceptable to plead in court that the sun was reflecting off the gigantic black shiny arse that was wobbling in front of you. You can also claim clemency under the indecency laws.
Motor cyclists are to be treated with the same contempt as ordinary cyclists. The only difference is that they go 50,000 times faster.
Other drivers should be treated with caution. You never know when they might have a skinfull of beer on them. Or, worse still, they might be tourists. The only ones that are relatively safe are the SUVs. The latter are a class in their own as they tend to be complete dimwits who are only compensating for their personal inadequacies by driving such a yoke. They invariably haven’t a clue how to drive and are relying on their vehicle to keep them safe. They are safer, simply because you can spot them a mile off, and can expect them to do the least expected.
So the rule of thumb is, whenever possible, to drive when there is no one else around. And if there are Other People around, then treat them like idiots who are out to get you.
Because the chances are – they are.