Pet Peeves Ahead
Everyone has a pet peeve related to driving, right? I know what mine are, but I was curious about what others might say if I asked, so I did. My faithful weekly newsletter readers responded without hesitation and I want to share their thoughts with you.
The top complaint involved space margins. Dislike of drivers who follow too closely was equalled by drivers who move in too soon after passing. Drivers who try to bulldoze others out of the way received special mention along with those who force other drivers to make a gap for them to facilitate a lane change.
Anticipation, planning and preparing ahead of time will prevent you from finding yourself in the wrong lane at the wrong time.
A variation on this would have pedestrians point their way to safety. Signaling drivers that you wish to cross by pointing along the crosswalk may increase the possibility that they will yield.
Third place is speed related, and if you grouped all the related behaviours together this peeve should probably top the list. Between simply traveling over the speed limit and being slower traffic that failed to keep right there were enough votes to come first.
Special mention was made of drivers who accelerate to the speed limit at the start of a passing lane and then slow back down again after it ends along with inappropriate speed limits, either too high or too low.
It's now a toss up between noisy exhaust and failing to come to a full stop in the proper place. Not stopping properly is one of the behaviours I discuss in Don't Let This Become Your Default Setting. Bad habits can be both dangerous and hard to break.
Cyclists who don't follow any traffic rules received a vote. It will be interesting to see how the Motor Vehicle Act will be amended to reflect modern cycling considerations. This is currently has enthusiastic support from municipalites and health authorities are also lending support.
In a way, I've saved what might be the best observation for last.
One commercial driver expressed the thought that many drivers fail to take the time to analyze before acting. If you are aware of what is going on around you as you drive, you may never find yourself in an unsafe situation.