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I'm seeing more craziness out on the roadways than ever. Since it's my sacred duty as a middle-aged suburban male to teach everyone else how to drive, I've decided we could use another one of these (plus it's fun).

In the first installment I stereotyped, ahem, "categorized" these folks by what they drive. This time around we'll look at some of the crazy stunts I've seen out there.

Better buckle up, this could get interesting.

1. The Weaver

Good luck with that.
They've got places to be and things to do that are obviously more important than you. That's why they constantly changes lanes like an NFL running back heading for the end zone. Left, center, right, center, right again, you get the idea. Turn signals are strictly optional and usually not employed.

In rush hour traffic all this extra effort puts them maybe three car-lengths ahead of you, getting them to their destination roughly 30 seconds earlier than they would have otherwise.

That looks like a lot of extra work. Sure hope it was worth it.

2. The Left-Lane Hog

Sums it up nicely.
This person drives #1 crazy. They're unsure of the concept that the left lane is mainly for passing so they like to camp out there all day. They either don't have much grasp of what's going on around them, or maybe they just don't care. Either way they're not helping.

3. The Passive-Aggressive

This person behaves a lot like #2 except they know exactly what they're doing. They're either trying to be the self-appointed enforcer of the speed limit or they're just doing it to mess with driver #1. Are they a jerk or just an idiot? You decide. They may not have road-rage, but they're probably causing it.

4. The Just Plain Aggressive

Yikes!
AKA - everybody in Boston. Don't make eye contact, they'll take it as a challenge. Don't signal, it just gives away your intentions and lets them speed up to cut you off. Be sure to carry plenty of insurance.

They are at least have the benefit of being predictable.

5. The Cautious to a Fault

Just got passed by a kid on a skateboard
This person is "too much of a good thing" personified. They're often found in the center lane, driving 10-15 mph less than everyone else. You'll see freeway traffic parting in a laminar flow around them on either side.

Oh, and if the pavement is a little wet or heaven-forbid has snow on it? Fuhgetaboutit! Hope you weren't in a hurry to get anywhere.

Look, it's good to be safe, but if driving is that scary just think how safe you'd be if you never left the house.

6. The Last-Second Decision Maker

This won't end well.
Hey! That's my exit over there! Extra points if you cross at least three lanes of traffic getting to it.

I saw someone hit the median once while pulling this stunt. It wasn't pretty.

Don't. Just don't.

7. The Rolling Roadblock

What you'll be seeing for the next half hour or so.
OK, I understand, driving a truck is a tough job and the pay sucks. Still, there's nothing more frustrating than getting stuck behind the truck going 56 mph who's trying to pass the truck going 55 mph. It's like watching two glaciers drag race.

Now I've been told that many trucks are governed to where they can only go one or two miles over the speed limit. Fine, I'll grant you that, but then why bother passing?


8. The Squid

Look ma! No brains!
I had to look this one up. Apparently "squid" is motorcyclist slang for "squirrely kid". Doesn't matter what he's called (and it's almost invariably a he), you've seen him. Young guy riding more bike than he's able to handle. Also loves to do wheelies and other "hey look at me!" maneuvers.

Safety gear? Not needed. He's invincible. How would you see how cool he looks if he was wearing a helmet, or a shirt.

Assuming he lives he'll likely end up as the poster-child for skin graft research.

9. The Kamikaze Lane-Splitter

Motorcycle lane splitting is legal in california
What could possibly go wrong?
"Lane splitting" is when a motorcyclist rides between the lanes of traffic. It's actually legal in some states. Since I'm not brave enough to ride motorcycles any more I'll let others debate whether or not this is a smart move.

This guy isn't your garden variety lane-splitter, however. He'll come rocketing between lanes of traffic so fast he's a blur, engine wound to the red-line, his modified exhaust screaming. First time it happened to me it took a second to even register what it was. Sometimes they travel in packs so watch for his wingmen.

I guess someone needs to keep ambulance drivers in business.

10. The Fearless Urban Cyclist

Soon to be one less hipster
NAFD - No Apparent Fear of Dying

Look, I like bicycles. I enjoy riding mine very much. I don't enjoy it when they dart out into traffic in front of me. Some drivers hate us enough as it is, we don't need to be pissing them off by breaking traffic laws.

11. Memphis

Needs no caption
I've saved the best for last. I've driven everywhere in the country. Chicago, New York, LA, Miami, Dallas and yes even Boston. Memphis is in a class by itself. I don't know what they're putting in the water down there, but they can't be matched for sheer unpredictability anywhere this side of Italy.

I've seen it all. Giant dually pickups barreling up the left lane at 90 mph passing elderly couples going 45. People coming at me wrong way on an exit ramp. Ten miles per hour over the limit will just get you tailgated - by a cop.

Be sure to watch out for the guy running the red light, and the other two cars following him.

And whatever you do, if they happen to get that rare once-a-year snowfall do not drive that day.

Be careful out there folks.

Originally posted to Major Kong on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 01:22 PM PDT.

Also republished by Central Ohio Kossacks and Community Spotlight.

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  •  Tip Jar (241+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dance you monster, Santa Susanna Kid, Youffraita, Gordon20024, Demi Moaned, a gilas girl, poco, Domestic Elf, TDDVandy, tampaedski, undercovercalico, BachFan, wheeldog, radarlady, jwinIL14, No one gets out alive, old wobbly, T100R, underTheRadar, Free Jazz at High Noon, WiseFerret, NoMoJoe, Lost Left Coaster, SteelerGrrl, Cassandra Waites, Archie2227, surfbird007, markdd, Jbearlaw, Sorta Randle, oceanrain, RiveroftheWest, carpunder, ArchTeryx, Involuntary Exile, angry marmot, annieli, citizen dan, badscience, Wee Mama, implicate order, Avilyn, Joy of Fishes, jeff in nyc, viral, SeekCa, Buckeye54, highacidity, tapestry, Alexandra Lynch, Ekaterin, myrmecia gulosa, Captain C, kathny, Hey338Too, basket, slowbutsure, Nebraskablue, Polly Syllabic, Kevskos, bonehead, GAS, RonV, quill, VTCC73, magnetics, jakedog42, Sun Tzu, Nailbanger, Bronx59, ruleoflaw, Alumbrados, rmonroe, sfbob, TheDuckManCometh, OleHippieChick, salmo, yojimbo, greenbird, Yasuragi, Bluebirder, IndyinDelaware, duhban, thenekkidtruth, PaloAltoPixie, Alfred E Newman, Simul Iustus et Peccator, pixxer, lenzy1000, Pat K California, greycat, wildweasels, mookins, Loonesta, Curt Matlock, elfling, kingneil, emmasnacker, carolanne, doinaheckuvanutjob, dewley notid, blue91, alice kleeman, Jonathan Winters Talbot, xaxnar, wader, Michael Vykun, fallina7, Josiah Bartlett, subtropolis, envwq, midnight lurker, hester, JVolvo, Mentatmark, vcmvo2, DaveinBremerton, jnhobbs, high uintas, Trotskyrepublican, notrouble, Freedomfreak, Bluefin, emeraldmaiden, OldSoldier99, owlbear1, deha, rb608, sawgrass727, itzadryheat, Beezzley, jeannew, PsychoSavannah, dansk47, foresterbob, dharmasyd, samoashark, grover, ApostleOfCarlin, Larsstephens, Wreck Smurfy, politik, TrueBlueDem, barbwires, cany, GeorgeXVIII, NoMoreLies, janmtairy, pcl07, Isara, Bud Fields, Ice Blue, YucatanMan, Marko the Werelynx, Azazello, virginwoolf, Thinking Fella, Trendar, cinnamon68, twigg, anodnhajo, Otteray Scribe, rbird, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, Shockwave, Dbug, begone, Celtic Merlin, Puddytat, ColoTim, petulans, 207wickedgood, eyesoars, marleycat, operculum, wozzlecat, oldliberal, chantedor, riverlover, rasbobbo, melo, DRo, prfb, EJP in Maine, CSPAN Junkie, Tinfoil Hat, banjolele, jbob, Bexley Lane, david78209, Emerson, msdobie, hlsmlane, nuclear winter solstice, Dauphin, thegoodstraw, Ed in Montana, mamamedusa, Brian B, hazzcon, CwV, Tim DeLaney, FindingMyVoice, basquebob, MKinTN, Oh Mary Oh, Statusquomustgo, Knockbally, 3goldens, Bob Friend, imicon, profundo, shanikka, p gorden lippy, lineatus, SherwoodB, artmartin, Dr Arcadia, kerflooey, SueM1121, checkerspot, Random Brainwaves, rubyclaire, lulusbackintown, MinervainNH, llywrch, rebereads, seefleur, kat herder, BlackSheep1, BlueMississippi, Munchkn, Hirodog, bunsk, Lilith, hwy70scientist, Knucklehead, PaDemTerry, bastrop, kurt, ozsea1

    If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

    by Major Kong on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 01:22:51 PM PDT

  •  Brilliant! (25+ / 0-)

    T&R. Wonderful diary, thanks, Major Kong.

    Irony takes a worse beating from Republicans than Wile E. Coyote does from Acme. --Tara the Antisocial Social Worker

    by Youffraita on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 01:37:27 PM PDT

  •  In regards to #2... (27+ / 0-)

    Out here in L.A., the #1, or fast lane, is becoming the "texting" lane, and of course, driving no more than 50 MPH while doing so. The texters have taken over the Prius "pace cars" for the top honors now...SSK

    "Hey Clinton, I'm bushed" - Keith Richards

    by Santa Susanna Kid on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 01:38:21 PM PDT

    •  I don't know about (12+ / 0-)

      the Prius 'pace cars' - they can do 70 just fine - but the cars I see in the fast lane are generally trying to do 80 or more.

      What scares me are the drivers going around corners, or driving through parking lots, while holding a phone to their ear. (The boom cars are another hazard to everyone around them.)

      (Is it time for the pitchforks and torches yet?)

      by PJEvans on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 01:50:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  In LA, the 'fast lane' is often the slow lane (19+ / 0-)

        Despite my username, I relocated to LA a while back, and it's a completely different 'universe' out here when it comes to driving. The 210 freeway will typically move at least 75-80 mph during off-peak hours, though the carpool lane on the far left will be moving at 61, with a Prius or japanese minivan trundling along, with a whole raft of folks who want to do 80, and will cross the double yellow separating the carpool lane from the rest of the lanes to make very dangerous passing maneuvers.

        I'll be the first to say, I'm almost a #1 on this list - but I never do it in heavy traffic. There's no point - I'd end up beating the guy I just passed by 30 seconds if that. One thing I am anal about: turn signals. They're the only thing that brings order to the chaos out here.

        It wouldn't be necessary to be "the weaver" if people would simply adhere to the signs on the freeways that are posted prominently and frequently: "Slower Traffic Keep Right". I don't care that you may be going the speed limit, or even 10 above the limit - the fact is, you're slower than I am. Merge right. Or I'll pass you on the right at the first opportunity I get. My biggest single pet peeve is that...

        •  We really need to rid the world of "fast lane" (6+ / 0-)

          It is not the "Fast Lane", it's the "Passing Lane".  "Fast" is subjective - my fast is a whole lot faster than my husband's fast - but "Passing" is not.  You're either passing the cars to your right, or you aren't.  And if there aren't any cars in the right lane to measure this against, then you shouldn't be in the passing lane anyway.

          They always talk about how crazed the drivers are in Italy, but I'll say this for them - they understand this concept better than anywhere else I've every driven.

          DOMA delenda est. DOMA: September 21, 1996 - June 26, 2013

          by lineatus on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 07:24:41 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Unless you're in Texas on a non-toll road: then (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kurt, lineatus

            that far left lane, where there's NOT potholes big enough to swallow a full-size pickup? Yeah, that's where you wanna be ...

            LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

            by BlackSheep1 on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 01:47:52 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  We need autobahn rules on the interstates (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            lineatus

            The autobahn is far fars safer than any american highway and that is because their sane laws are enforced whereas in the us traffic laws are usually deternmined by extremist groups of one sort or another (like all of our laws)

            A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

            by cdreid on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 03:21:20 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  70 is not "fast" in Los Angeles when 405 is wide (5+ / 0-)

        open.

        And Prius drivers know it. They need to get out of the way.

        © grover


        So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

        by grover on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 07:57:09 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  In Fairfield, CA (12+ / 0-)

      No one stops at stop signs.  It is amazing.  They just look you in the eye and drive right through, if you are stupid enough to stop at yours.

      •  Unbelievable.. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        hester, cdreid

        That's going to cause accidents. Do they do any enforcement out there? Cut tickets to stop sign runners?

      •  I've been guilty of the California Stop myself... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sawgrass727, rebereads

        Though I do have the good sense to slow down at the stop sign to ensure I can look both ways before I break the law...

        •  In New England, it's called the "rolling stop" (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Ice Blue, 3goldens

          And people do get tickets for it, though the only place I know it happens a lot is the town of Dover, MA, which, as far as I can tell, gets all its revenues from traffic tickets.

        •  Actually, in Fairfield, they don't even (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          PaloAltoPixie, Simplify

          California stop. They sort of slow down. That's it.

          It's a strange local thing. You don't see it in Vallejo or Davis. It's very local to Fairfield, Suisun City and Vacaville.

          © grover


          So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

          by grover on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 08:00:23 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  While in San Francisco... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kurt

            ..look for the "slow turn."
            You approach an intersection where another car, on the right, has the stop sign.  He waits till you're about 50 yards away before he s-l-o-w-l-y pulls a right turn in front of you.
            Maybe they think I won't notice...?

        •  Slow Tap On Pedal (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          NE2, artmartin

          I have to confess to almost always doing this while cyclist, but as anyone who cycles on streets knows, it's extremely disruptive to have to completely stop at each sign. You might as well be walking. Slowing down to the point where you're barely moving, looking both ways, yielding if necessary (and actually stopping to avoid falling over if required), is almost always good enough, from a safety point of view. But cars are much easier to stop and start, and because of their size, heft, power and design, with the driver several feet back of their front end, should always stop. Some states even have laws that allow bicycles but not cars to do rolling stops.

          "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

          by kovie on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:19:19 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  wow--that's Italian! (0+ / 0-)

        Seriously.

        In Italy, eye contact is considered giving the other person right of way. And stop signs are optional, as are red lights.

        You have to stop, but you don't have to stay stopped, you just have to successfully time your passage through the lights to avoid collisions with other cars, bikes, pedestrians, and the occasional donkey cart.

        Gentlemen, congratulations. You're everything we've come to expect from years of government training (Zed, MIB).

        by GreenMother on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 05:44:41 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  That's the equivalent of a flashing red light here (0+ / 0-)

          I wonder what accidents stats are like in Italy, excluding drunk and high drivers.

          "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

          by kovie on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:20:23 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The ones they have are bad, but the drivers (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            lineatus, kat herder

            there are a lot more attentive and aware of the road than in the states.

            They drive a lot faster there, and are more pro-active. If you can drive well there, then barring some place like India, you could probably drive well anywhere.

            Gentlemen, congratulations. You're everything we've come to expect from years of government training (Zed, MIB).

            by GreenMother on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:55:12 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  I should add, that Italy has really great public (0+ / 0-)

            transportation. So I didn't see drunk driving incidents there, barring people in the US service who were stationed there. I saw drunk Italians one time the whole tour, the rest of the time--not at all. They drink a bit of wine with dinner and stroll around town socializing. If you are going to go out drinking, take the bus.

            Gentlemen, congratulations. You're everything we've come to expect from years of government training (Zed, MIB).

            by GreenMother on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:57:06 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  Years ago (0+ / 0-)

        in Cheyenne, WY, I was surprised to find uncontrolled intersections in residential areas. No stop signs, no yield signs, just first guy there has the right of way. As I was on a motorcycle, I found it to be a little unsettling.

        "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

        by happy camper on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 07:51:12 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I've got a beef with #2 also (4+ / 0-)

      In plenty of states the left lane isn't the a passing lane.  It's meant to be driven on by cars (trucks are not allowed to use it).  Many of us need to use it because our exit is on the left (yes, there are some of those around).  Slower traffic is to remain in the right lane.

      Some of us aren't hogs.  We're using the left lane as our state laws state.  And truckers who use the left lane should roast over a slow pit (yeah, jerks, I'm talking to you!  Move your big-assed, 55 MPH moving heap over to YOUR OWN LANE).  

      P.S.  Nothing.  Crickets.  Nada.  Zip.  What about the biggest pain in the ass caused by idiots behind the wheel?  I'm talking about those roundabouts, circles, or whatever they're called in your area.  THAT'S where you will see the most loony drivers.  It's like they never read the drivers handbook.

      There already is class warfare in America. Unfortunately, the rich are winning.

      by Puddytat on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 10:12:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  roundabouts and 4-way stop signs around here in NH (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MinervainNH, Puddytat, Icicle68, kurt

        and a lot of them are fairly new so we have people arriving at the intersections who used to know how to go but now hesitate or act polite, but that also screws up traffic. Ain't it weird, around here it can be politeness and people waving "Oh, you go first" that can also mix it up?

        But then again I will totally admit to being #5, and if any of the rest flash by me- well I'm rattled for half an hour. So how do I drive in Boston? By parking at Alewife & catching the T.
             Meanwhile, my daughter can drive an 18-wheeler across Boston and through the mountains of West Virginia in an epic snowstorm. She looks a lot like me but she got her Dad's bold driving genes I guess.

        We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

        by nuclear winter solstice on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 05:00:25 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  There's a certain rhythym to driving in Boston... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          nuclear winter solstice

          As long as I know exactly where I'm going, and am mindful of the time of day, it turns into routine for me. Lately I've noticed that driving in Manchester is really getting to be like driving in Boston, especially South Willow St. after 4 pm.

          Everybody got to elevate from the norm....

          by Icicle68 on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 05:22:27 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  In Oklahoma they passed a law about blocking the (3+ / 0-)

        left lane. If someone is creeping up on you, the law says that you have to move over to let them pass.

        I believe that this has reduced a lot of road rage incidents in this state. Now we just need to get the truckers to adhere.

        Gentlemen, congratulations. You're everything we've come to expect from years of government training (Zed, MIB).

        by GreenMother on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 05:46:14 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I've always understood the left lane (4+ / 0-)

        as being for passing and fast traffic, in that order, so if you're in it and going fast, and someone wants to pass you, you move over to let them, even if they're speeding (and who wants to be tailgated by some idiot doing 80?).

        "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

        by kovie on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:23:00 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  In the real world (0+ / 0-)

          It isn't this way, at least in southern California, where the passing lane is ANY lane that allows you to get in front of the roadslug in front of you.

          In southern California the #1 lane is a traffic lane, nothing more, you drive in it, you are under no mandated onus to pass anyone, but it is assumed traffic flows faster in the #1 lane than the #2 and so on.

          Further if I'm travelling along in the #1 lane at 75 to 80 some three or more car lengths behind a car in the same lane travelling at the same speed, I'm not pulling over into the lane next to me so the douchebag going 90 can continue to go 90 for an additional 1/10th of a second.

          This is called traffic and you slow down for it.

          Honesty may be the best policy, but it's important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy.

          by fauxrs on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 12:17:08 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  "pride" + driving = death (0+ / 0-)

            It's as simply as that. Can't say that I'm perfect on that score, but not pulling over out of a misplaced sense of vanity is simply asking for trouble. One picks one's battles in life and this simply isn't one of them.

            On the other hand, when I'm on by bicycle, if a driver or even pedestrian cuts into my lane or otherwise endangers me through an illegal action, you'd better believe I'll let them know it, rudely, because, again, my life is more important to me than THEIR vanity (or laziness, irresponsibility, etc.).

            In the end it comes down to life and health trumping pride. Always.

            "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

            by kovie on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 04:00:06 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I dont follow where pride or vanity enters... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              RiveroftheWest

              I'm saying, simply that if I am in traffic in the #1 lane then so is the person behind me.

              If there is traffic to the right of me regardless of whether it is flowing faster or slower than the one I am in, there is greater hazard merging into a lane that is moving (faster or slower) than there is for the person behind to slow up.

              If there is no traffic in the lane to the right of me I'm probably in it already.

              Honesty may be the best policy, but it's important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy.

              by fauxrs on Sat Sep 28, 2013 at 02:48:27 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  If you're going slower than traffic to the right (0+ / 0-)

                of you then you're a bad and selfish driver, period, end of discussion. And if some jerk tailgates you to get you to pull to the right to they can pass, and you don't, clearly vanity is at play, for both of you, and your refusal to "give in" makes you no less a bad driver than the jerk behind you.

                Unless you're an actual cop, don't play one in real life.

                "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

                by kovie on Sat Sep 28, 2013 at 06:11:41 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Under that definition.... (0+ / 0-)

                  There is no such thing as a good or unselfish driver in California. (which shouldn't surprise anyone who's driven here) At any given moment the lane one is in could be going faster or slower than the one to the right of it, we call it traffic. By your definition each and every person who finds themselves going slower than the lane immediately to the right should immediately merge to the right - slowing traffic even more. anyone who doesn't is being prideful and vainglorious.

                  By your definition "he who drives the fastest owns the road"

                  Honesty may be the best policy, but it's important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy.

                  by fauxrs on Mon Sep 30, 2013 at 12:04:55 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  That's actually the law, not just my opinion (0+ / 0-)

                    Of course, in California, everyone is his own lawmaker, I suppose.

                    "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

                    by kovie on Mon Sep 30, 2013 at 01:02:18 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Citation please... (0+ / 0-)

                      If its the law, please cite code & section and I will gladly revise my position

                      Honesty may be the best policy, but it's important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy.

                      by fauxrs on Mon Sep 30, 2013 at 06:05:23 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  OK here it is.... (0+ / 0-)

                        Ca. Vehicle Code Section 21753 "Yielding for passing" states>

                        21753.  Except when passing on the right is permitted, the driver of an overtaken vehicle shall safely move to the right-hand side of the highway in favor of the overtaking vehicle after an audible signal or a momentary flash of headlights by the overtaking vehicle, and shall not increase the speed of his or her vehicle until completely passed by the overtaking vehicle. This section does not require the driver of an overtaken vehicle to drive on the shoulder of the highway in order to allow the overtaking vehicle to pass.
                        So you are absolutely correct under certain conditions - and I stand corrected in those cases. However those conditions vindicate me on Southern California Freeways.

                        "EXCEPT when passing on the right is permitted" - this is permitted by VC 21754

                        "Upon a highway divided into two roadways where traffic is restricted to one direction upon each of such roadways."
                        which effectively means if he can pass on the right I am not obligated by CA Vehicle code to move over for him.

                        Also there is a visual or audible signal required (which occurs from time to time to be sure, but not always)

                        You might also note that VC 21754 also states:
                         

                        "The provisions of this section shall not relieve the driver of a slow moving vehicle from the duty to drive as closely as practicable to the right hand edge of the roadway"

                        Now we could argue about the definition of slow-moving vehicle and whether the "speeder" automatically makes all other vehicles "slow moving" under the vehicle code or not but that seems silly to me.

                        Thank you for a thoughtful discussion.

                        Honesty may be the best policy, but it's important to remember that apparently, by elimination, dishonesty is the second-best policy.

                        by fauxrs on Mon Sep 30, 2013 at 06:37:55 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Shorter version (0+ / 0-)

                          Every highway I've driven on has had signs telling slower traffic to keep right. I'm guessing that they didn't put them there just for the hell of it, but because the law sanctioned it. I've never seen an unlawful official road sign.

                          Including this one:

                           photo ButtHoleRoad.jpg

                          "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

                          by kovie on Mon Sep 30, 2013 at 09:05:22 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

    •  i am (again sadly) (0+ / 0-)

      a professional truck driver with a lot of years of experience and i can guarantee that texting while driving is far more dangerous than drunk driving. But drunk driving has a lobbying organisation whos leaders make  a insane living off of and its hard to demonise twd as it's common

      Ive encountered fare far more near accidents due to twd.

      A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

      by cdreid on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 03:18:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  T&R'd (28+ / 0-)

    for the recognition that Memphis drivers deserve their own class.

    As a native Memphian, I could not agree more.

    29, white male, TX-07 (current), TN-09 (born), TN-08 (where parents live now)

    by TDDVandy on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 01:53:59 PM PDT

  •  Regarding #9 (14+ / 1-)

    I positively seethe when I see the "Look Twice Save a Life / Motorcycles are Everywhere" signs and bumperstickers. Why is it MY responsibility to look twice and save the life of idiot motorcyclist #9, exactly, when he clearly has no regard for it himself, hmmm?

    “No, Governor Romney, corporations are not people.” ~ my Senator Elizabeth Warren

    by Domestic Elf on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 01:55:18 PM PDT

  •  Variable-speed drivers (49+ / 0-)

    This applies on limited access roads (i.e., freeways and tollways) in moderate to light traffic when there's plenty of space for people to pass and go their own speed.

    I always use cruise control when I can and I appreciate it when others do. So, once I get on a freeway I set my speed and only change it as required by traffic conditions.

    There are several variants:
    1) The person who comes up agressively behind you in the left lane. You move over, figuring he's going to pass you quickly, but then he just kind of hangs there behind you in your blind spot.

    2) The leap-frogger. Someone ahead of you going slower. You pass staying in cruise control the whole time. The other person speeds up and passes you, then slows down. I had one do this to me in New Mexico once, driving from Albuquerque to Taos. The road was almost empty. He did this leap frog maneuver about five times. Finally, I just sped up to an unreasonable speed until I got well ahead of him. Didn't see him after that.

    "The smartest man in the room is not always right." -Richard Holbrooke

    by Demi Moaned on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:02:04 PM PDT

  •  Left out tailgaiters (37+ / 0-)

    Like, drivers who are 2 feet from your rear bumper when you're going 70 mph. Obviously they are not aware of the laws of physics, which will cause them to plow into you if you have any reason to slow down or, God forbid, stop. And most of these are serial tailgaiters: move out of their way, and they will be 2 ft. behind the next car ahead of you.

    That said, nothing in the US compares to some overseas locations. Bangkok had the scariest traffic I have ever seen in my life.

  •  Memphian here... (29+ / 0-)

    I moved here from somewhere else, I was appalled when I first arrived by what passed for driving and now I have adjusted. Essentially everything here is considered "optional" by many drivers, signaling, stoping, driving a reasonable speed limit in parking lots, all of the generally accepted rules here in Memphis do not apply.

    And it would be fine if drivers were both aggressive and skilled but they are just aggressive. Then slightly less than awesome weather hits think light dusting of snow and you get massive chaos.

    My ex-husband who was an excellent driver and took some advanced driving courses just for the fun of it literally saved our lives a few times with his quick thinking when we were about to be t-boned or hit head on by somebody who blatantly ignored traffic lights or rules of the road. The two car accidents I have been in were of the kind where the other person hits me and thinks I was in the wrong only to get a lecture from the cops.

    I swear people actually aim for cyclists here. The Mayor has actually done a nice job of expanding bike lanes much to the annoyance of car drivers who do not get they are actually required to share the road.

  •  #s 5 and 7. (15+ / 0-)

    We used to call #5 "cautious to a fault" drivers "Moses drivers" because all the other cars were parting around them like the Red Sea around Moses.

    Regarding #7, the reason truckers pass another truck going just a mile or two per hour slower has to do with momentum, gear ratios, wind drag, and topography.

    •  #7 You sound reasonable (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      nuclear winter solstice

      but the reason truckers have a federal license, validated by the States is because they are considered and expected to be professional drivers, controlling not only their lane but also all directions around them at all times. I understand the "downhill plunge" and the uphill "drag".

      Delivering the freight anywhere beside the point (loading dock) of destination is just a very, very bad idea.

      Be safe, driver! :)

      Nurse Kelley says my writing is brilliant and my soul is shiny - who am I to argue?
      Economic
      Left/Right: -7.75
      Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -4.51

      by Bud Fields on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 08:53:07 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Regarding #7... (23+ / 0-)

    It's much worse when the rolling roadblock is on I-80 going up Donner Summit, where a truck going 31 just has to pass a truck going 30, with a speed limit of 65.

  •  A variation of #7 (15+ / 0-)

    People driving slowly on two lane highways that don't use the pullouts as required by the CA vehicle code.

  •  The anger management candidates. (17+ / 0-)

    They are driving 60, you pass them at 65, they pass you right back going 80, then slow back down to 60.  It's usually a steroid pick-up truck with gun rack.

    Living the austerity dream.

    by jwinIL14 on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:24:57 PM PDT

  •  I have to admit, I was number 3 yesterday. (17+ / 0-)

    Normally I'd move over if someone's coming up behind me, except I was already doing 75 in a 60 in the left lane passing everybody, when some asshole comes flying up behind me, brights flashing, horn honking, and if I had to guess, no more than a foot from my bumper. That's when I slowed down a bit and refused to move, and he was stuck behind me for a good while because there were cars in the next lane over.

    I'm not trying to be the speed limit enforcer, but if you're going to be a total dick, then I'll be an even bigger one.

    "How come when it’s us, it’s an abortion, and when it’s a chicken, it’s an omelette?" - George Carlin

    by yg17 on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:29:12 PM PDT

    •  I have to admit I did that once (11+ / 0-)

      Similar situation.

      Even better, my car has a very bright rear fog light.

      If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

      by Major Kong on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:35:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  It's understandable to do that (8+ / 0-)

      but still risky in our angry and armed society. But I totally feel you. I can't stand the people who think they own the road and owe no obligation to anyone else to drive safely.

      "As the madmen play on words, and make us all dance to their song / to the tune of starving millions, to make a better kind of gun..." -- Iron Maiden

      by Lost Left Coaster on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:38:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, it's understandable, but risky. (5+ / 0-)

        While driving I've been followed/hassled/etc. by angry assholes who have perceived some slight. All have been men, FWIW.
        None of these escalated into anything worse, maybe because I refused to play their games.
        I have pulled over and reported dangerously aggressive maniacs to the troopers via phone. Let them do the work.
        As a trooper once told me,

        "too many drivers want to take the law into their own hands. It leads to road rage, which can lead to tragedy. If people really want to enforce traffic laws, they're welcome to come into State Patrol headquarters; we're always accepting applications."
    •  sounds like you were going too fast too. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      basket, Kevskos

      15 over will get you a ticket some places.

      “Conservation… is a positive exercise of skill and insight, not merely a negative exercise of abstinence and caution…” Aldo Leopold

      by ban nock on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 03:21:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Just An Idea (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      lulusbackintown, kurt

      but those symptoms usually indicate to me that someone has a legitimate emergency, and is trying to get to a hospital or medical care. They usually get the attention of police, who then (when inquiries are complete) lead the way for them. Not always, on either score.

      Nurse Kelley says my writing is brilliant and my soul is shiny - who am I to argue?
      Economic
      Left/Right: -7.75
      Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -4.51

      by Bud Fields on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 09:01:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Being Passive Aggressive is nothing to brag about. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PaloAltoPixie, Ice Blue

      Further, in Colorado, if a State Patrolman sees you do this, you will be cited for obstructing traffic in the overtaking lane, and also possibly under the road rage statute.

      A decade or so ago, the commander of the State Patrol said that the number one cause of road rage incidents was passive aggressive drivers attempting to control the speed of other drivers, and that he had instructed his officers to explicitly watch for that behavior, and ticket it.

      Legalities aside, you have no way of knowing who is driving that vehicle, or why they are going that fast. You are assuming a situation that conveniently justifies your passive aggressive tendencies.

      Your attitude would change rapidly if you found out that the driver was an off-duty law enforcement officer, with no cigarette lighter-powered magnetic emergency flasher, or perhaps a volunteer firefighter in the same circumstance, or maybe a person with a medical issue, or someone with a personal emergency to deal with.

      Tell us, exactly what would your reaction have been if, in mid hah-hah-hah-I'm-fucking-that-asshole-over self-satisfied reverie, you had looked in your rear view mirror and seen him holding up his shiny silver badge?

      But let's suppose the driver is just someone breaking the law worse than you. You're saying that you decide for others just what is the appropriate level of speed law breakage?

      Or perhaps you don't like that the individual used his lights and closed up on your bumper. Did you see that person coming soon enough to make a quick right lane change to allow them to go by without having to slow down (a process called "being courteous")? Or did you not notice until you had already killed their momentum? (This is called "being inattentive".) Or did you deliberately kill their momentum? (This is called willfully being a dick.)

      Freeways are not the Indy 500, and you don't lose money or points or trophies by giving up a position to someone who is clearly going faster than you, for whatever reason. Further, in Formula One, blocking is illegal. In Indycar, it is illegal, within certain limitations. Only in NASCAR is blocking technically legal.

      But in NASCAR, if you block long enough, or block the wrong driver, he'll just "get up under you and put you into the wall".

      See? In the only premier racing series where blocking is allowed, it causes road rage. But in NASCAR you have a roll cage, a helmet and HANS device, a badass seat with a 5-point harness, SAFER barriers softening the walls, and none of the other drivers carries a gun.


      "Politeness is wasted on the dishonest, who will always take advantage of any well-intended concession." - Barrett Brown

      by 3rdOption on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 09:52:31 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We had someone go pull out in front of, and go (5+ / 0-)

        slow in front of the car while I was well in the throws of labor, and on my way to give birth, somewhere other than the effing highway. The pain in the first stages of labor is pretty intense. Luckily the idget was not in arms reach for me to pull their lip over their head.

        I am sure they felt smug by slowing us down. I won't relay to you what my thoughts were. They were pretty dark thoughts. I was on all fours in the backseat trying to breath through some very intense contractions and would have loved a stress-squeeze toy that had eye balls that popped out every time I gripped it hard.

        Gentlemen, congratulations. You're everything we've come to expect from years of government training (Zed, MIB).

        by GreenMother on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:05:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Your speedometer said 75 but (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BlackSheep1, kurt

      How fast were you going?
      My speedometer reads about 10% faster than my actual speed on both my work van and personal car, both with factory original tires. I've blasted through speed traps at an indicated 72 MPH several times but never got pulled over because it's actually only 65.

      I once had a car come up behind me much as you describe, lights flashing, no horn but in a big hurry, when I let this lunatic by I saw there was a kid, maybe 6 years old laying down in the front seat, I imagine on the way to the hospital.

      If someone wants to go faster than me I let 'em.

  •  2012 mileage (13+ / 0-)

    Bike:  10,200 miles
    Car:  approx 2,000 miles

    Bike to car mileage ratio:  approx 5

    Looking forward to raising that ratio to 10 this year.

    And yes, the hipsters can be annoying, but at least they're not piloting thousand pound vehicles.

    •  Yes (12+ / 0-)

      I'm a bicyclist and don't even own a car (although I occasionally rent or use car share). No one gets madder than I do about poorly behaved bikes. They make it harder for the rest of us. Even so, though, they mostly put themselves at risk (not always -- in particular pedestrians have been severely injured by careless bicyclists). Poorly behaved drivers are still worse, because they have thousands of pounds of steel to throw around.

      It is a two way street, of course, and I show cars the respect that I ask them for. But I will take my turn at the stop sign, I will use the appropriate lane, and if I am going a little too slow for you and there is no space to pass, well, tough shit.

      "As the madmen play on words, and make us all dance to their song / to the tune of starving millions, to make a better kind of gun..." -- Iron Maiden

      by Lost Left Coaster on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:41:10 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Oh don't get me started on ignorant bikers (22+ / 0-)

        I once had a guy on a bike behind me in my car. I signaled to make a right turn into a parking lot. As I started to slow down to make the turn, the biker tries to pass me on the right (aka, the shoulder). Needless to say, he came about this close to implanting himself in my passenger side. He decides to follow me into the parking lot and start yelling at me, something about how because he's a biker, I need to respect his space and  look out for him and that I almost killed him. I'm just like "Dude, you passed me on the right when I signaled for a right turn, that was your fucking fault". As I was walking into the store, he started riding circles around me and was like "There, how do you like it if I try to cut you off" and acting like a child.

        Look bikers, I don't care if you ride a bike, good for you. Frankly, I wish I had that kind of energy to and wasn't so lazy. But if you're going to ride it on public streets, you are not exempt from the rules of the road.

        "How come when it’s us, it’s an abortion, and when it’s a chicken, it’s an omelette?" - George Carlin

        by yg17 on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:47:15 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Someone in NYC died that way recently... (9+ / 0-)

          ...she apparently tried to pass, on a bike, a signaling-for-a-right-turn truck on the right side, and got crushed.  At least one facebook friend of mine was outraged by this (that the truck, which had right of way and probably didn't even see her, didn't sense the biker via ESP or suchlike); I decided to be tactful and not explain that, if you're dumb enough to blatantly break a traffic rule like that (i.e. don't pass a right turner with right-of-way on the right, and when they can't see you), it's probably your fault that you got killed, even if it's also a very sad thing.

          It's amazing how many cyclists think they're exempt from the rules of the road, and immune from the laws of physics.

          •  Yes, in most states, (2+ / 0-)

            passing on the right is unlawful...SSK

            "Hey Clinton, I'm bushed" - Keith Richards

            by Santa Susanna Kid on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 04:21:13 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  exactly! (0+ / 0-)
            It's amazing how many cyclists think they're exempt from the rules of the road, and immune from the laws of physics.
            here where i live in NC, they LOVE to bike our 55mph hilly, twisty country roads.  i don't blame them - but when you turn a corner where you can't see around and there's two bikers riding abreast giving you bad looks when you suddenly blow by them - people just don't exercise common sense.
          •  This has been a serious problem in Portland (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            RiveroftheWest, kurt

            Most streets have bike lanes on the right side, so it is easy for cyclists to pass stopped traffic on the right, using their bike lane.  Right-turning trucks have produced a number of fatalities.  Now at dangerous intersections, they have moved the stop line for vehicles back about 10 feet and painted a big green area in the roadway between the cross-walk and the stop line, so cyclists can move up to the head of the traffic line instead of being constrained to the bike lane on the right.  Seems to work well.

            I'm still mad about Nixon.

            by J Orygun on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 10:32:57 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  the 7/10th of a mile that is the wide main street (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            RiveroftheWest

            of my small town has that problem. There are signs reminding people not to pass on the right, and people walk all over that section of road. There are two crosswalks less than 100 yards apart and, gee, most of us here respect that. If you don't you may very well find out the hard way why everyone else stopped.
                 Leaving work at rush hour, my co-worker and I have it choreographed. She walks home. I get in my car to back out and the timing is just right and we can see each other, so she checks for traffic, but even if they look like they weren't planning to stop she steps into the crosswalk. At the same time I back out into the road from my diagonal parking space and stop to head away in my direction. Many times I've seen the other driver, who was going to blow through the crosswalk go 'oh shit' there's a car, and hit the brakes. She just smiles sweetly at them and walks on by. (I asked her once if she had a death wish, and she said no, just the right of way which she was keeping.)

            We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

            by nuclear winter solstice on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:02:10 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  I live on a road, that has 55 mph limit (5+ / 0-)

          and one day I had a bicyclist cross the white line just I was going to pass him. So I gave a beep on the horn to let him know to watch his lane. I pulled in my drive just up from where  this happen, and he stop and started to bitching at me for beeping my horn. I told the guy, the last thing I wanted to do was to hit him. Then he got on a rant about car drivers, and how we are a bunch of assholes. Ended up him telling me that he was going to kick my ass so I got a pickax out of my garage and told him come on. Then he called the police on me. The guy was a lot bigger then me. The police showed up got my side of it and nothing came of it.

      •  I wish we spent transportation dollars for you to (3+ / 0-)

        have designated car-less roads. Cars and bikes can just be too lethal. Many of our bike paths are too slow, more for leisure, and many pedestrians. The roads have bike lanes but are still very dangerous.

        “Conservation… is a positive exercise of skill and insight, not merely a negative exercise of abstinence and caution…” Aldo Leopold

        by ban nock on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 03:24:51 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Wanted to congratulate you.... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RiveroftheWest

        Believe it or not, nobody is more unforgiving on discourteous, stupid, or dangerous truckers...than truckers. Check it out sometime with, say any DOT official and see what they say about getting reports on truckers by truckers. CB is a wunnerful thing. :)

        Nurse Kelley says my writing is brilliant and my soul is shiny - who am I to argue?
        Economic
        Left/Right: -7.75
        Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -4.51

        by Bud Fields on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 09:05:07 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Win! (5+ / 0-)

    Extra points for this caption:

    Soon to be one less hipster
  •  I sometimes commute a two lane highway (13+ / 0-)

    that goes through the hills. I'm familiar with truck races. Sometimes the truck trying to pass gives up because it can't.

    What I can't figure out is that when there is one truck, drivers will slow down a little to pass, but if there are two they slow down more, and almost slow to a crawl for three or more. I try, especially after reading diaries by by The Baculum King to linit my time next to trucks.

    This signature left intentionally blank.

    by underTheRadar on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:39:28 PM PDT

    •  the Baculum King! Thanks, I was trying to remember (4+ / 0-)

      that name because I read his diary twice and just thinking about it makes me want to cry again. Everyone should read that- can someone link to it for those who haven't seen it? He probably has many diaries- I mean the one with the kids under the truck.

      My daughter drives anything from a car to an 18-wheeler for work, but when I asked her why she turned down a good steady job as a long-distance bus driver, she said it was because an accident that leaves produce all over the road is one thing, but she didn't want to worry about hurting passengers.

      We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

      by nuclear winter solstice on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:10:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  #1 Lane-weavers self-defeatingly slow prevailing.. (5+ / 0-)

    ...speed of traffic in the lanes they weave through, as they force other drivers to defensively adjust to their aggressive maneuvers.  Which only tends to provoke increasingly aggressive maneuvers by the lane weavers.

  •  The gapers (15+ / 0-)

    I had heard of gapers blocks from a young age in Chicago. I currently live in the San Francisco Bay Area where traffic generally moves if there's an opening.

    But I spend a lot of time in Charlotte, NC, for work. I can't believe how susceptible the people here are to gapers blocks. I mean if there's a big ugly scene of wreckage at the side of the road, it's deplorable, but understandable to expect some slowdown. But here, traffic slows down to a crawl if someone has been pulled over for a traffic violation... in the lanes going the opposite direction!

    "The smartest man in the room is not always right." -Richard Holbrooke

    by Demi Moaned on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:41:36 PM PDT

    •  St. Louis is notorious for that shit too. (14+ / 0-)

      Some guy getting a speeding ticket? Lets all slow down and watch. A guy mowing the grass on the other side of the fence? Wow, never seen that before!

      People here will even slow down for an emergency vehicle going the opposite direction on a divided highway with a concrete median. Look, I understand you're supposed to slow down for emergency vehicles, but the ambulance isn't going to do a U-turn at 70 miles an hour and bust through the median like the fucking Kool-Aid Man.

      "How come when it’s us, it’s an abortion, and when it’s a chicken, it’s an omelette?" - George Carlin

      by yg17 on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:49:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  yg17: it's the law some places (0+ / 0-)

        even if you're on a Controlled Access Highway.

        If it's on your SIDE, you damned well BETTER give way for

        a TxDOT truck / crewman
        a traffic stop with DPS/ SO/ PD vehicles
        a school bus stopped with flashers on
        a disabled vehicle

        some places double the fine in work zones, too.

        LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

        by BlackSheep1 on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 02:24:31 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I've often thought that the cops ought to (4+ / 0-)

      erect big camouflage screens so that you can't see the stopped vehicles.

      But of course cops (and others) routinely get killed by drivers who don't even notice the flashing emergency lights.  

      Back in the day, when you were stopped by a cop, he would come up to the driver's window to ask for your license and registration.  No more.  Now they come to the passenger's window (unless, of course, you've stopped on the shoulder next to the median).

      We must drive the special interests out of politics.… There can be no effective control of corporations while their political activity remains. To put an end to it will neither be a short not an easy task, but it can be done. -- Teddy Roosevelt

      by NoMoJoe on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:52:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Some actually do. For example, some places (4+ / 0-)

        in California have inflatable yellow "walls" that screen accident scenes so there is literally nothing to see.

        Rubber-neckers with nothing to see don't slow down as much. Keeps traffic moving and reduces air pollution from cars being stalled in traffic jams.

        "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

        by YucatanMan on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 08:46:02 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I wish they'd do that in Colorado. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          YucatanMan
          •  Safety screens (0+ / 0-)

            Here's one website which sells pop-up screens for exactly this purpose.  

            Rubbernecks – motorists who drive slowly past an accident to gape and get a better look at what is going on - are responsible for millions of miles of traffic congestion every year. But worse still, their behaviour is often the cause of countless rear-end collisions and even far more serious accidents which can occur when a motorist fails to notice the backlog in traffic which has developed at the spot where the original accident occurred and ploughs into the vehicles in the tailback.

            Research carried out accident prevention agencies have shown that the quick deployment of free-standing safety screens significantly reduces rubbernecking and the potentially high risk of danger that comes with it. In fact it can even eliminate such behaviour altogether because there is simply nothing to see.

            I've seen inflatable ones too, but cannot seem to find a reference online right now.

            "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

            by YucatanMan on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 11:35:06 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Gaaah! Rubberneckers are so damned obnoxious! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Demi Moaned, GreenMother
    •  some places have laws that you ARE supposed to (5+ / 0-)

      pull over on both sides of the road if you hear sirens/see lights. Our area recently changed and many do it, although some aren't aware of the change yet.

      Meanwhile on a long straight stretch of highway in Florida, my Dad got caught in a leap-frog State cop sting. The law there was that if someone was pulled over you had to get as far over away from that as you could. Well, Dad was talking with us and had naturally moved from the right lane to the middle lane but not all the way to the left and so that was an apparent violation even though it was a clear day with plenty of room, very little traffic, and visibility for all. The policeman who had someone pulled over radioed ahead to the next one, who pulled over my Dad. While we were being processed we watched more people getting the same treatment, as our guy radioed ahead. They were stationed up and down the highway with nothing better to do it appeared.
           I don't condone not following the law, and Dad paid the ticket because it was true, but up north I have always experienced warnings, not tickets, and it seemed to me they could have had more discretion but instead they wanted $165.00

      We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

      by nuclear winter solstice on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:22:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Texting? Or stoned? (5+ / 0-)

    Here in Vancouver, BC, this is the game I play with most drivers, whom I mostly interact with as a bicyclist or pedestrian (occasionally rent a car or use car share). Drivers here, for the most part, are polite and follow the speed limit (exceptions in neighbourhoods with high numbers of Lexus and above vehicles -- to over-generalize, it seems that the richer the driver is here, the less regard they have for other drivers). But I often see drivers drifting into traffic, pulling in front of others without even stepping on it, crossing the centre line over and over again, and just rolling through cross-walks and stop signs, again at fairly low speed, in ways that suggest that rather than being over aggressive, they're just inattentive.

    The question is: are they texting? Or stoned? Or texting stoned? Harder to tell if they're high; I can often see them with their smart phones in hand, which I find to be terrifying. But a lot of them must be high too, I swear.

    "As the madmen play on words, and make us all dance to their song / to the tune of starving millions, to make a better kind of gun..." -- Iron Maiden

    by Lost Left Coaster on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:44:10 PM PDT

  •  My DW does a variant of #2 (7+ / 0-)
    • Multi-lane limited access highway
    • DoT decides to close one or two lanes (usually for non-existent work)
    • traffic backs up as vehicles attempt to merge
    • often, as the point where the lane closure becomes visible, most drivers will have already merged, leaving an empty lane leading up to the closure
    • there are always some, however, who speed along the empty lane, get to the merge point, and force their way in, thus slowing things down even more
    • DW attempts to position herself half in one lane and half in another, in an attempt to block the line jumpers; when it's the right lane that's closed, the lane jumpers just go onto the shoulder and zoom by, often providing a single-digit salute

    We must drive the special interests out of politics.… There can be no effective control of corporations while their political activity remains. To put an end to it will neither be a short not an easy task, but it can be done. -- Teddy Roosevelt

    by NoMoJoe on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:45:41 PM PDT

    •  In theory (9+ / 0-)

      remaining in two separate lanes until the merger point is the fastest option. The two lanes are supposed to zipper together. In practice, humans cannot perform this task so I advocate for merging as quickly as possible.

      •  !! (9+ / 0-)
        humans cannot perform this task

        We must drive the special interests out of politics.… There can be no effective control of corporations while their political activity remains. To put an end to it will neither be a short not an easy task, but it can be done. -- Teddy Roosevelt

        by NoMoJoe on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:53:46 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I used to think it was rude (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Tinfoil Hat, RiveroftheWest, kurt

        to cruise down to the end of the merging lane, and I got mad at people who did it, but the moment after I found out it would be more efficient if everyone did it, I became one of those drivers!

        All that empty lane out there; don't let it go to waste...

        Government and laws are the agreement we all make to secure everyone's freedom.

        by Simplify on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 02:58:30 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I WILL EAT YOUR HEART IN FRONT OF YOUR CHILDREN (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          18038

          Uhhh, I mean....I have a different opinion on this matter, and in fact this issue may or may not be the only thing, outside of politics, that raises my blood pressure on a regular basis.

          I live in Toronto and sometimes have to drive places, and therefore I've put a lot of thought into this issue - mostly while stopped at merging-traffic bottlenecks.

          Imagine that there are 6 cars in a lane, and the lane ends in 500 m. Traffic's relatively heavy. All 6 of those cars are going to need to find a car-sized open space in the next lane. If each one merges as soon as they see an opening, they're not likely to force anyone else to slow down or stop. However, if they don't attempt to merge until the end, then you have six vehicles that are suddenly running out of blacktop. Unless car-sized gaps open up at precisely that moment, they're going to have to slow down or stop, and then, in order to let them merge, someone else is going to have to slow down or stop as well.

          In other words, it seems to me that staying in the closing lane until the very end can only be more efficient if you are able to merge, at the speed of the other lanes, right when you hit the end of your lane. If you have to slow down or stop when you hit the end of your lane, and thereby force someone to slow down or stop when you merge, then it's slowing everyone down.

          In heavy traffic, the thing to conserve is the speed of the overall mass of vehicles.

  •  you're missing the guy who drives on the shoulder (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Alexandra Lynch

    to pass one or two cars.

    missing the driver who overreacts and causes others to crash.

    missing the driver who drives a two full buses behind the person in front of them.

    -You want to change the system, run for office.

    by Deep Texan on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:50:55 PM PDT

    •  Shoulder drivers. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Deep Texan, ColoTim, Ice Blue, llywrch

      I never knew anyone would do such a crazy thing. Then I was sent to Florida for business for several months. It happened every day during rush hour.

      Whew! Scary stuff.

      © grover


      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

      by grover on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 08:07:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It's legal in some places, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        nuclear winter solstice

        especially during rush hours. NJ, MA, etc. come immediately to mind. And, it's not usually posted. AND, it's always a hoot when they come upon a guard rail. They'll usually celebrate a birthday there. Personally, I am amused, and not sympathetic.

        Nurse Kelley says my writing is brilliant and my soul is shiny - who am I to argue?
        Economic
        Left/Right: -7.75
        Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -4.51

        by Bud Fields on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 09:09:20 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Some friends from college once carpooled from (0+ / 0-)

        Boston down to DC on the evening before Thanksgiving. They saw someone do that every few minutes. That is, until all those shoulder passers came upon a real live breakdown and had nowhere to go. Then half the normal drivers shouted catcalls and/or pelted them with garbage.

        Any jackass can kick down a barn, but it takes a good carpenter to build one.--Sam Rayburn

        by Ice Blue on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 08:41:48 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  you ain't seen nothin' 'til you see the (0+ / 0-)

        San Antonio on-ramp surfers.

        Why it's light-colored ragtops I don't know, unless kids do it for kicks ...

        they'll zoom across from the far left to cut onto one of those airborne on-ramps, and go up the concrete barrier like skateboarders at X-Games....

        LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

        by BlackSheep1 on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 02:29:17 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I was crossing the street (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NE2

      And a car stopped for me like they're supposed to here in California, so the car behind them goes roaring through in the shoulder. Good thing I didn't get hit by that asshole.

      "Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the president to explain to us what the exit strategy is." - George W Bush

      by jfern on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 12:37:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  #2 gets a bit complicated... (5+ / 0-)

    ...when you are on an interstate with left-lane exits.  Ohio and Michigan are infamous for them; at some point you HAVE to hog the passing lane to be assured of making your exit (thus avoiding a #6!).  Yet people still honk and throw me the bird and just get nasty about it.

    Is that an inversion of the passing-lane-hog type of driver?  The idiots that don't realize that there are such things as left-hand exits?

    •  FWIW (0+ / 0-)

      The on-ramp from Sante Fe Drive onto SB I-25 in Denver is a left-handed access to the Interstate (or was last I was there). At one point, it was rated by DOT as the most dangerous intersection in America.

      Nurse Kelley says my writing is brilliant and my soul is shiny - who am I to argue?
      Economic
      Left/Right: -7.75
      Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -4.51

      by Bud Fields on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 09:23:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think it's now been fixed. Haven't been (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bud Fields

        through there recently, but that was trouble because you could merge left onto the highway or wait a quarter mile and get there on the right.

        One of my standard commutes is also bad, as there's my onramp onto a four lane highway (6th ave) just as there's an exit about 100 yards in front of my onramp.  Followed by the right exit (with two turning into three lanes) to get onto I-25 NB or SB.  Lots of collisions as cars that had been going 65 are suddenly braking and going right while other cars are merging and there's no clue as to which exit people are shooting for.  I gave up the NB Santa Fe route for this one at Federal and Sixth, so sometimes there are no good choices.  

        •  Green Mountain was my haunt for a while (0+ / 0-)

          and I used to make that route every day. Are ya missing the mousetrap...yet? :)

          Nurse Kelley says my writing is brilliant and my soul is shiny - who am I to argue?
          Economic
          Left/Right: -7.75
          Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -4.51

          by Bud Fields on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 03:25:28 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  must be the meth in Menphis (4+ / 0-)
    This person drives #1 crazy. They're unsure of the concept that the left lane is mainly for passing so they like to camp out there all day. They either don't have much grasp of what's going on around them, or maybe they just don't care. Either way they're not helping.
    Why the Aston Martin DB-5 with wing cannons was invented

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:52:16 PM PDT

    •  wing cannons? are those available aftermarket? (0+ / 0-)

      They'd fit beautifully right under the headlights on my Dodge ...

      LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

      by BlackSheep1 on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 02:31:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  don't forget the asshole (7+ / 0-)

    who changes lanes in front the semi with not enough space for the semi to slow down.

    how about the idiots who ride parallel or in the blind spot of semi's.

    -You want to change the system, run for office.

    by Deep Texan on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:53:36 PM PDT

  •  Most Insane #9 motorcycle stunt I ever saw was... (13+ / 0-)

    a trio of motorcyclists traveling together on a limited-access portion of US Hwy #1 south in the vicinity of Cary/Apex, North Carolina going 70 mph down the highway, passing me at 70mph while doing sustained 45-degree wheelies (i.e. only the back tire was on the pavement) lasting at least 15-20 seconds at a time.  And then after passing, one of them put his front wheel down, pulled into the right lane ahead of me about four car-lengths in front of me, and then again popped another sustained wheelie.  Had he lost his balance and fallen at 70mph that would have been bad enough on a highway otherwise empty of traffic, but there would have been no way I could have avoided running over him (and wrecking myself).  And this was at a time of day (7pm) when rush hour traffic was just beginning to taper off, but there was lots of traffic.  Any accident these fools would have caused would have had high probability of involving multiple cars running over any fallen cyclist and then crashing into each other.

    At least they were all wearing helmets, so the faces on their traffic-decapitated heads wouldn't have been mangled.

    •  Some of the higher-risk (3+ / 0-)

      rice rocketeers out here are doing the rear wheel up wheelies while driving at speed. They have to drop the rear wheel down more often to regain the speed and traction, though. Apparently, front wheel off the ground is for squares...SSK

      "Hey Clinton, I'm bushed" - Keith Richards

      by Santa Susanna Kid on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 04:32:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  A salesmen told me West Coast sportbikes (4+ / 0-)

      last an average of one year. I used to see big groups of squids out of Tacoma on I5, always on new bikes, until the crash of 2008. Since then, virtually no young men on sportbikes.

      A magazine once said 'squid' refers to the squidlike way they move- dart, stop, dart- nothing skillful about it. It went on that of course no one will admit to being one, even the punk "so squidly he smells of brine".

      "The war on drugs followed by the war on terror has eliminated protections we have had since the Magna Carta." -Horace Boothroyd III

      by mookins on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 05:57:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  There was an article a while back about the (4+ / 0-)

        actual falling demographics of young California men in the HS-college age bracket due to the numerous deaths on "rice rockets / crotch rockets / your-preferred-term-here."  Apparently, they were particularly deadly on mountain roads where young, unskilled riders were going far too fast for curves and the laws of physics took over.

        I don't know if that trend has continued, but there's no shortage of those bikes around here (Texas) and shooting off curved elevated highway ramps & bridges is a common news item.

        "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

        by YucatanMan on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 08:51:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Combine #3 and #5... (4+ / 0-)

    and you've succinctly described the hazards of DWMN (driving while "Minnesota Nice"). Egads...

    Real stupidity beats artificial intelligence every time. (Terry Pratchett)

    by angry marmot on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 02:54:08 PM PDT

  •  then there are the tailgaters who come up behind (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Alexandra Lynch

    you in the #1 lane tailgating as you're passing a semi in the #2 lane, so you have no place to go or else forcing you to go 80+ to get back to the #2 lane - Makes one want to own a Death-Proof car. Yes, it is the equivalent of Gub-Nuttery, but I don't actually own one (yet)

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 03:01:51 PM PDT

  •  One you don't list that drives me crazy (15+ / 0-)

    Are the tailgaters afraid to use the left lane to pass someone.  The people who, if I'm in a middle lane passing people in the right lane, ride my ass while the left lane is open and they could pass me safely and easily.  But no, they'll ride my ass until 2 inches of space opens in the right, and then zip around on the right hand side.  W.T.F.  I don't get those people.  See it far too often.  

    The Girl Who Loved Stories
    I’m a feminist because the message is still "don’t get raped" not "don’t rape"

    by Avilyn on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 03:07:04 PM PDT

  •  I apologize for that bicyclist (9+ / 0-)

    I spend a lot of time on the road with two wheels and I make it a very big deal to obey all the rules of the road and all traffic stops.  All the time, every time.

    I have my music but I'm alert, and I'm always cool with drivers. Once in a great while I meet a jerk, but they've got 3,000 pounds on their side, I let it slide.

    Bikes are a great invention with great utility and fun.  Being on one does not grant immunity from road rules or good plain safe behavior.  I've found that as I always stop for stop signs drivers respect it and give me appreciative glances.  I'll take all of those in life I can get.

    I see it as a social thing, being a good rider means everyone feels better and is safer.  You cannot leave it up to the drivers, no way, they have their own agenda. Many would feel better about sharing with riders if they were respected with easy rules.

    You know, I'm not a rules person at all, no way, but in this one instance I do play. Every time.  Getting blasted off the road by metal is nasty, it's happened, no need to chance it.

    •  "they've got 3,000 lbs. on their side" (4+ / 0-)

      Or, to put it another way, all the witnesses saying "the bicyclist was in the right" won't matter much to them if they're dead.
      I hear ya.

    •  There is a corollary to this: trains. (4+ / 0-)

      I tell my students to never argue with a train: He's way bigger, way heavier, and he won't stop for a quarter mile or more after hitting your 2000 pound car.

      An average locomotive weighs nearly 400,000 pounds, and freight cars can weigh up to 286,000 pounds, each. Put four or five locomotives with 120 cars on a track at even just 35 miles an hour, and he still can't stop too well.

      Even an Abrams tank would have a hard time at a grade crossing.

      And yeah, I know tarantulas don't really act like that at all, so no snarking, this is the internet damnit!

      by itzadryheat on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 07:43:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  My first rule of driving (7+ / 0-)

    Other drivers suck.  This is what I tell any new or soon to be drivers.  I think it should be on the front of every drivers' manual in the country in big, black letters.  Or maybe red.  Great diary, thanks for all the LOLs!!!

    •  I've decided just to assume that everyone is (4+ / 0-)

      driving "impaired".  This helps me keep my sanity, otherwise I think "what person in their right mind would.....".  You see where I'm going with this.

      Folks are driving impaired IMHO if:
      - under influence of alcohol/drugs
      - holding a phone for any reason
      - not paying attention to traffic
      - are road raging that day

      Of course there's no way I can tell what's going on with another driver so it works for me to assume the worst and stay alive.

      Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead -

      by FlamingoGrrl on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 05:11:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I got on a highway where the posted (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Kevskos

    speed limit is 65mph.  The car in front of me was going 20, and I needed the next exit.  I feel lucky to be alive!

    ...Son, those Elephants always look out for themselves. If you happen to get a crumb or two from their policies, it's a complete coincidence. -Malharden's Dad

    by slowbutsure on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 03:34:12 PM PDT

  •  There's a maneuver I've only ever experienced... (20+ / 0-)

    ...in Arizona.  Often it happens on a quite empty highway.  I'd be barrelling down the right lane, probably doing 5-10 over the speed limit (which, unless you're near the center of a city, is probably at least 65), when someone will come flying up behind me, switch lanes to pass me, and then swerve back into the right lane to barely catch the exit that they would have made 2 or 3 seconds later if they'd just stayed behind me.  I was tempted to follow one of them to their destination, and then say "hey, you were in such a hurry, I figured you were going to an amazingly cool place, and I just wanted to see what it was," but given how paranoid and gun-crazy a lot of Arizonans are (think Florida without the humidity and coastline), I always decided it was a bad idea.

  •  Part 1? (7+ / 0-)

    Hey, can we have a link to A Field Guide to Bad Drivers - Part 1?

    ‘‘For Barack, success isn’t about how much money you make, it’s about the differences you make in people’s lives.’’ ~ Michelle Obama, DNC, 4 Sep 2012

    by harchickgirl1 on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 04:00:43 PM PDT

  •  Most (6+ / 0-)

    accidents occur when the driver is going 20% over or 20% under the speed limit.  And the ones going under cause more and worse accidents because it is harder to judge that they are that much slower than the other traffic.

    Boston has the most aggressive drivers I have seen but Chicago has the rudest, they start laying on the horn the second the light turns green if your not moving.

    "In short, I was a racketeer for Capitalism" Marine Corp Brigadier General Smedley D. Butler

    by Kevskos on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 04:02:21 PM PDT

    •  Diggin' your sigline! (N/T) (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Kevskos, nuclear winter solstice

      "Hey Clinton, I'm bushed" - Keith Richards

      by Santa Susanna Kid on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 04:35:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  This. (4+ / 0-)

      Driving over the speed limit is far safer for you and everyone around you (given a straight highway with no messed up road conditions) than driving significantly under it.  

      Chicago?  Heh, try NY.  The 'New York Minute' is the amount of time it takes from when the light changes to when the guy behind you starts honking -- see 'Planck Time'.

      •  That's crazy. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        djMikulec

        Because people can see you coming in their mirrors and assume you MUST be going over the speed limit.  eyeroll

        I swear, the things people say to rationalize their own speeding.

        •  Hey... (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          GeorgeXVIII, Kevskos, PaloAltoPixie

          ...I'm not saying it's safer than doing the speed limit.  I'm merely saying that speeding is less unsafe than someone tooling along at 45 on a highway where the speed limit's 55 and the prevailing traffic's going 65-75.  The slowboater causes a snarl of slow-downs and sudden lane-changes from those who get stuck behind them and emergency-braking from those who aren't paying as much attention as they should.  Speeders' behavior is generally predictable; slow-boaters engender less-predictable behavior in all of those who're behind them and overtaking them.  

          Also, frankly, if you're driving on a highway in NY and you see someone in your mirrors who's getting closer, it's quite safe to assume that they're doing over the limit, 'cause odds are you are too.  And it's not like people think in terms of MPH when they're assessing closing velocities.  Assuming you're on a non-windy road with good surface conditions, it doesn't matter that the guy in the lane next to you is doing 55 or 90.  On the other hand, the guy in the lane next to you doing 45 may fuck your day up when the guy who's stuck behind his slow ass decides to veer into your lane, and doesn't check his blind spots.

          •  Apparently, you missed my point. (0+ / 0-)

            If you're spending so much time looking in your rear-view mirror as you're going 90 mph...

            ...yeah, the consequences are fairly predictable.

            Blaming someone going the speed limit for rear-ending them isn't going to cut it in court, and it's not going to cut it with me, either.

            And, yeah, it does matter if the guy in the lane next to me is doing 55 or 90.  The guy going 90 can easily hit something--like the median--and flip over it, crossing the entire freeway.  It happens every morning on the 91 here in Southern California (don't try to lecture me about "driving on the highway in NY"--your "highways" are amateur hour compared to the 91, the 101, and the 110 freeways in Los Angeles).

    •  On an overpass (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Kevskos, nuclear winter solstice

      heading into downtown Chicago in the right lane-- bumper to bumper but moving fast. Had a semi start passing us in the left lane and decided he wanted to be where we were. We didn't have anywhere to go. Leaned on the horn but he just kept coming.

      We figure at least three drivers behind us pulled over at the next stop to change their underwear.

      I hate driving in Chicago.

      Not that driving anywhere is a lovely experience.

    •  and (0+ / 0-)

      they learned that tactic from Philadelphia drivers.

      I join in - anytime I hear a honk at an intersection, I honk too. Confuses the becheeses out of the original honker.

  •  While living in Tucson, AZ I twice had the fun (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    emeraldmaiden, foresterbob

    experience of having a car ahead of me come to a complete and abrupt stop in the middle lane of three lanes of same direction traffic on Speedway Blvd. and no where near an intersection with a signal.  In both cases the driver stopped cold and waited for traffic to clear and then changed lanes.

  •  In Arizona you often get an interesting mix... (8+ / 0-)

    ...of Chicago-born drivers who are used to bumper-to-bumper driving at 85 sharing roads with Sun City* residents who think that going 50 in the left lane of a 75 zone is living dangerously.  Unsurprisingly, the accident reports on AZ news radio are often quite long.

    *a retirement community

  •  Red Light Runners (8+ / 0-)

    I thought I'd seen everything living in the SF Bay Area for 35 years, but people there have got NOTHING on drivers where I live now, Sacramento, when it comes to red light running. I've never seen anything like it.

    Running red lights in Sacramento is routine. And I don't mean running a yellow light that turns red -- I mean driving straight on through a light that's fully red. I bought myself a dash cam and I now record my daily short commute downtown because I know it's just a matter of time before I'm T-boned by some idiot who didn't stop. At least I'll have the evidence for the insurance claim.

    "It's the Supreme Court, Stupid!"

    by Kestrel on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 04:20:33 PM PDT

    •  OMG (3+ / 0-)

      Western Washington drivers are getting horrible about this. A lot of lights are set up with a 3 second yellow, then 3 seconds of red while the other direction is still red, and then the other direction gets the green. I often see 3 cars go through after I have the green.

      If the driver was going 35 mph (a bit fast if they are planning on turning, but likely the posted limit) their light turned yellow 300 feet before they ran the red light. Any car can safely stop from 35 mph in 300 feet (if it can't it isn't in any legal condition to be on the road.)

      A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward. Franklin D. Roosevelt

      by notrouble on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 07:31:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Mork calling Orson. Come in Orson? (0+ / 0-)

        Orson: Okay, Mork what have you learned?
        Mork: Red means Stop, Green means Go, and Yellow means Go Faster.

        We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

        by nuclear winter solstice on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:53:46 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  King County Transit... (0+ / 0-)

        is worse than anyone at running red lights, even when they can't possibly make it through the intersection.

        "[I]n the absence of genuine leadership, they'll listen to anyone who steps up to the microphone...They're so thirsty for it they'll crawl through the desert toward a mirage, and when they discover there's no water, they'll drink the sand."

        by cardboardurinal on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 08:58:16 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  That's why pretty much every single light in Sac (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      nuclear winter solstice

      on a major road has a red light photo enforcement camera.

      Smile as you run that red light!

      :)

      © grover


      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

      by grover on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 08:09:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  watch out for scams. We went through a tiny NY (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kurt

        town on our motorcycle, and a month later I got what appeared to be an official traffic ticket by e-mail. Except that it was for a date and time that I could prove we were elsewhere. When I followed it up, the town had a big warning on it's website about how they were being used by scammers and don't pay that ticket.

        Another time I got a parking ticket at a college when I could, again, demonstrate that I wasn't there that day. The word from the Parking Dept. Supervisor was "Well our software recognizes license plates within a range of numbers." And he politely deleted my record. But it left me wondering how many everyday students were having this sort of a thing tacked onto their bills without realizing it might not be true. At this school parking places were at a premium and many of us played parking meter roullette running out between classes and competing with the city people. An incorrect $5 ticket or two might never be noticed.

        We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

        by nuclear winter solstice on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 07:01:54 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  $5 ticket? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          nuclear winter solstice

          Here, the cheapest I've seen is $361 (waaaaay out in the sticks) according to the signs posted. Most are in the $470-499 range.

          They take pictures of the license plate AND the driver too; and they send you both photos. If it's not you, you know it. If it's obviously your car (the license plate is clear), then you have to give up your friend who was driving it, or they hold you responsible. "It's not me" doesn't cut it. This is revenue we're talking about.

          I'm sure if it's a total stranger, you could argue that to a judge, under oath. But my roommate driving my car doesn't get me it of a ticket unless I tell them who she is.

          © grover


          So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

          by grover on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 10:21:16 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I'm' a #1... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Alumbrados, PaloAltoPixie

    ...when traffic is light to moderate.  I work the lanes, look for the reasonably open spots, and take them.  It actually does get me to my dstination faster, and I can do it perfectly safely for everyone.

    This only works, however, below a certain traffic density.  Above that, I usually sit in the lane I'm in, unless there's a compelling reason to change.  If I DO change, traffic in my new lane seems to inevitably slow doen, letting the line of cars I just left speed ahead.  The trick to workign the lanes is knowing when it will profit you to do so, while still driving safely.

    The road to Hell is paved with pragmatism.

    by TheOrchid on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 04:25:07 PM PDT

    •  You might think it gets you to your destination (4+ / 0-)

      faster, but it is only by a few seconds.

      I deal with those everyday in rush hour traffic.  I very frequently see them pull their traffic swerves for a couple miles or more, then end up pulling up next to them or behind them at the first traffic signal after my exit.  For all their swerving, they haven't gained anything on me at all.

      If you calculate the distance and the speed difference you are able to achieve, it isn't even possible to get there much faster than a few seconds, unless you're traveling many miles. One thing that lane-changers don't realize is that they are adding distance to their trip with each lane change.  The more you deviate from a straight line, the longer your trip actually is.

      In fact, in pursuit training, we learned we could actually catch up with cars in traffic by driving slower than they did.  How?  By not wasting time and distance swerving around corners and jerking lane to lane, the patrol car traveled a shorter distance and maintained better control, thus able to keep up with a car driving "faster" and more recklessly.

      Common drivers are surprisingly unaware of simple things like physics, distance, velocity, and other basic calculations.  But their driving "feels" better to them, so they rationalize it.

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 09:00:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Adding distance? (0+ / 0-)

        I had to laugh at that one.  Any "added distance" would be as negligible as you think the time savings for not changing lanes would be.  In light to moderate traffic, relative to cars adjacent to me in traffic, I'm not slowing down when I change lanes; my speed relative to them remains the same (by sight).  I routinely see cars disappear behind me after I've passed them, indicating I'm outpacing them pretty healthily (I usually do so while merely keeping pace with the rest of traffic).  For example, if the average speed of a freeway is 75 and I feel like doing a little over that, you can't tell me I'll get there just a "few seconds" slower if I voluntarily park behind someone doing 65 or even 70.  And your example is about someone fleeing pursuit who's not thinking straight, not someone who's driving normally.

        I did say "light to moderate traffic".  I also said that in heavier traffic (like rush hour), changing lanes so much doesn't pay off.

        The road to Hell is paved with pragmatism.

        by TheOrchid on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 05:03:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  It so happens that I have posted (8+ / 0-)

    a diary/poem that relates to this.
    You could add number 12, the Ugly Savage Monster to your list:

    A driver who swerves, not to avoid, but to intentionally hit small animals, sometimes going off the pavement to do so.

    Yes, there are people who do this.

    I started with nothing and still have most of it left. - Seasick Steve

    by ruleoflaw on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 04:29:55 PM PDT

  •  A couple types not mentioned... (7+ / 0-)

    First would be what the folks over in the newsgroup rec.autos.driving would call a "Duckling" where a driver will imprint on you like a baby duck and follow you (usually by tailgating) everywhere in a trance-like state. Speed up, slow down, change lanes, it doesn't matter because they'll match your every move. It takes something extremely drastic (like changing lanes and slamming on the brakes) to dislodge them.

    Second type was described perfectly by Pemco Insurance, so I'll just link to 4-Way Stop, You Go. No You Go. No You Go. Guy: http://youtu.be/...

  •  Italy and France (4+ / 0-)

    I was promised some of the worst drivers in the world.

    What did I get?  Drivers who weren't as bad as New York, let alone Boston.  Very few shitboxes doing 70kph on a 130kph autostrade.  Lots of fast cars doing about 200kph in the left lane, but always polite about it -- they'd politely flash their lights if they got behind you, and were generally civilized as long as you got out of their way as soon as it was safe (by Italian standards).  And the roads were better maintained than many US states (granted, this is a low bar for any European country), some parts of the autostrade weren't even covered with badly patched potholes.

    In France, sidewalks are something you park on.  In Boston, they are a replacement for the French motorway system.  And French drivers have been cowed into submission by wall to wall photo speed radar: the Gallic tradition of assuming that their speed limits are in mph, not kph, is, sadly, no more.

    •  I just visited Vietnam recently. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      foresterbob

      Traffic in Hanoi was pure controlled chaos. Nobody stops for stop signs or red lights. The only saving grace is that the traffic is about 90% scooter or small motorcycle, which provide a certain level of agility. The advice for cross a street as a pedestrian was to simply start walking, walk at a constant pace, and never stop or back up. In theory, if you followed that procedure, traffic would avoid you.

      In Saigon, there has apparently been some sort of enforcement crackdown, because people actually stopped for red lights.

  •  The left lane is for passing??? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Noisy Democrat, PsychoSavannah

    Are you sure about that?

    I'm pretty sure the left lane is for going 75 down the expressway to the Cape before it's completely dahk.

    Lisa ;)

    All Kossacks are my allies, but if you can't express your thoughts in a civil and kind manner, I won't be engaging in a conversation with you.

    by Boston to Salem on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 04:50:01 PM PDT

  •  Note to left lane hogs: (4+ / 0-)

    Drunks love to go the wrong way in that lane. Just saying'..

    The USA and the rest of the world face a dangerous enemy that not only threatens our freedom but our very existence. This enemy is deeply embedded within society and is actively working towards our annihilation. That enemy is ignorance.

    by Ex Con on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 04:50:10 PM PDT

  •  The latest plague in New England (2+ / 0-)

    Teenage girls are slaughtering bikers. In Hopkinton, a 16 year old girl killed a 13 year old boy on a bike. In Hew Hampshire, a 19 year old girl without a license killed 2 women & injured 2 more. Another biker from here got killed in Ohio.

    I just take comfort that A: I'm getting too old to bike & B: The ratio of drivers to bikers is on a permanent decline.

    Still, very scary.

  •  A high school friend died splitting lanes on MC (5+ / 0-)

    I know there is supposed to be some lightheartedness in this, but the decades have not changed my reaction to lane splitting.  A week short of graduation, a classmate friend died doing exactly that.  Nothing about that had even a whiff of humor.  It still doesn't.  

    •  I've ridden motorcycles for 16 years and (5+ / 0-)

      can't even begin to fathom the courage/foolishness to lane split.

      No. Way.

      So sorry for your loss.

      As of 9pm 8/30/13: RETIRED Pie Warrior. Substance over Sh*t Flinging (as best as I am able) ~ JV

      by JVolvo on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 07:46:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You'd hate the rest of the world then (3+ / 0-)

      Lane splitting is the norm throughout the rest of the world. It's only here in America where riders are mostly not allowed to do it, except for California and DC.

      First they came for the farm workers, and I said nothing.

      by Hannibal on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 10:38:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  In my experience (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RiveroftheWest, Margouillat

        Sport-bike riders in Europe are even crazier than those in the US.

        I was driving on the A7 in France at somewhere around 180 kph and had a couple of sport bikes split the lane between me and the car I was passing.

        I don't really care if they want to stare death in the face but I'd just as soon they leave me out of their little suicide pact.

        If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

        by Major Kong on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 04:48:59 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  After 40 years of motorcycling in France, (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          RiveroftheWest

          I appreciate your precise wording "Sport-bike riders"... :-)
          Those are often the wheelers one too !
          Still, we have a sort of tolerance in the lane splitting thing when it's on the furthest split (between the left lane and the next on at right), when going at about the same speed then the mean traffic one. This is about to be written in code !

          I've seen it through forty years of time span, nowadays there is a "gentlemen agreement" between four wheels drivers and two wheeled ones about this peculiar  lane splitting situation (the emergency lane is an absolute no) and in rush hours, even with no bikers in view you'll find a wider space gap then on the other lanes...

          The time when you could do 180 Km/h on a french highway is gone forever ! It's 130Km/h now ( and 110 Km/h when in foul weather). Most of the everyday bikers have also changed their "habits" or even their bike choices, mostly because of those speed limits, sometimes because of the crisis (less fuel gurgling bikes), ABS is almost generalized, and protection clothes and helmets are a must (we do have a great choice in those, from the city fashionable vest to the hard weather one). Helmets must (by law) be changed every two years (they have a date tag), because of the wear of the straps and the occasional bump when dropping it at a counter or banging it around like a satchel bag.

          Because of traffic in the cities there are much more bikers then before (less parking space, less fuel consumption, less traffic space). Some of those used to be bikers when younger and know the danger and have those reflexes quickly kicked back in, other go through the long process of getting a full license (we have several driving licenses linked to the "horsepower" of the machine), while others go along with scooters (often allowed with a car driving license) and are the "scum" of the two wheeled community until they finish at the hospital (worse even then some of those "sport-bikers")...

          We had a government study (Livre blanc des deux-roues), very detailed about all the two wheeled accidentology (including bicycles) that shows very well the categories, the ages, the practices that are accident prone (seems that I'm out of those red areas :-) )!

          We have smaller roads that offer more curves and bends, shorter distances, peculiar weather that changes in less then an hour and a social history on motorcycles (started with workers before being a café-racer). Big cc's cylinders is not really our trip, 500cc used to be our police forces "heaviest" bike (BMW R-50-3) when most of us were in the 350cc league.
          Nowadays the 600-700 cc is the usual lot with torque at low rev (traffic, speed limits) with a tendency toward low consumption (3 liters for 100Km) and all the security gadgets one can think of...!

          Maybe because we're a small country, education works (slowly alas), regulations helps, mutual understanding between road users grows. I can't recount how many times in foul weather truckers signaled me to "nest" in between them, protection of speedy cars in low visibility, shielded (a bit) against winds and heavy rain...

          A WWII fighter pilot once said to me: "The best ever pilot isn't the one who does those difficult stunts, it's the one who stays alive the longest !"...

          Thanks for this very interesting (and educative) thread... :-)

          "What can I do, What can I write, Against the fall of Night" A.E. Housman

          by Margouillat on Sat Sep 28, 2013 at 05:46:01 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  There's a similar saying (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            RiveroftheWest, Margouillat

            "A superior pilot uses his superior judgement to avoid situations requiring his superior skill".

            If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

            by Major Kong on Sat Sep 28, 2013 at 10:55:29 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  If they have psychic powers, then I say go for it (3+ / 0-)

        Lane splitting as long as they can call with accuracy when a car is changing lanes ahead. Some guy going 40 to 60 MPH on a small vehicle coming up behind me---I am not going to see them as quickly as a car because of their size--and I do watch for bikes.

        On a highway that is a good way for a bike to hit a car changing lanes.

        Gentlemen, congratulations. You're everything we've come to expect from years of government training (Zed, MIB).

        by GreenMother on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:10:02 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  tipped and recced (0+ / 0-)

    the over cautious drive me absolutely nuts I must admit but really the only thing I truly dislike is when people can't decide what speed they want to go.

    Maybe that was in part 1, I'll have to go look now.

  •  Worst accident I've ever seen #9 (10+ / 0-)

    A motorbike blew by us.. up ahead was an accident, and they were using a scraper lift to evac the car off the road (it's like a forklift but instead of forks it's a mesh that goes under the car and catches everything).

    The motorcyclist came through fast and the scraper had no ability to move the lift.  The biker couldn;'t move in time and had nowhere to go since traffic was stopped and he was between cars.

    He drove straight into the evac and was decapitated.  Brutal, terrible incident.  The guy who was driving the evac vehicle that was trying to clear the first accident had a really hard time with it; he took a leave from his employer because while he knew there was nothing he could have done and it wasn't his fault, it still messed him up.

    That's what I say to people who do stupid things: you may kill yourself and that's on you.. and what you do to someone else, that's also on you.

    Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

    by Chris Reeves on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 05:16:25 PM PDT

  •  I'm not seeing "The Speeder" anywhere on here... (4+ / 0-)

    ...and yet he's the most dangerous driver of all, even if he blames everyone else around him for going "too slow".

    He might even categorize them as "The Left-Lane Hog", "The Passive-Aggressive", "The Cautious To A Fault", and "The Rolling Roadblock" on blog sites, all while ignoring the fact that he's going too damned fast.

    •  Was about to note the same thing... (3+ / 0-)

      Seems like obeying the fucking law on the road these days (turn signals and speed limits) is a damn option. These people are a danger to everyone else on the road.

    •  No Turn Signal (2+ / 0-)

      No, the speeder isn't the most dangerous driver. Most drivers are going fast enough to kill or maim in a collision.

      It's drivers who don't signal, including stopping too short, who are the most dangerous. It's acceleration that is dangerous, and any turn is acceleration. Lane changers at low speeds are much more dangerous than speeders who always signal well enough.

      "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

      by DocGonzo on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 08:59:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  When you look at climate impacts (0+ / 0-)

      the speeder probably is the most dangerous.

      warning: snark above

      by NE2 on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 12:50:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Depends (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      nuclear winter solstice, T100R, kurt

      On the road, the car, the driver, the weather conditions, the traffic, time of day.

      The law in many states also says SLOWER TRAFFIC KEEP RIGHT or KEEP RIGHT EXCEPT TO PASS.

      If you're going to be a stickler for the law then you don't get to pick and choose.

      If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

      by Major Kong on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 05:00:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I had a memorable encounter with one once (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RiveroftheWest, Lasgalen Lothir

      Portland has the climatic idiosyncracy that when it snows, driving is worse here than anywhere else.

      Part of the problem is that it never really gets cold enough here for snow to stay snow: instead all of that compressed snow turns overnight to ice.

      Another problem is that a surprising number of people here have no effing clue of how to driver in snow. And it snows here enough that I figure a few years of driving will give one enough experience to be a passible driver in those conditions. I figure the reason there are so many bad snow drivers here is that they all come her from California, & never have driven in snow. (I'm not making a hasty statement here. The majority of people in Oregon are arrivals from other parts of the country, most of wom come from Washington & California. Assume that 90% of California drivers are competent in drivng in snow, & that still creates a large supply of unskilled snow drivers that is replenished on a regular basis.

      Anyway, years ago it snowed one December. Normally I would stay at home, but I had something at work that had to be done, telecommuting didn't exist then, so I had to drive in. Did that part safely, did the work, started home. My path at the time took me through the Tewilliger Curves (which are notorious for accidents even in good weather), blazing along at 35, 40 mph on packed snow, passing a truck going 25 mph. So far, so good, everyone is safe.

      That's when a hothead appears from behind & starts tailgating me because I'm driving below the speed limit because of bad weather. And I can't pull over to let hothead pass because of a truck in the left lane. After what felt like several minutes, I finally pull far enough ahead of the truck so I can let hothead pass. He promptly pulls up alongside of me, starts yelling at me thru his closed window, then speeds down the freeway to tailgate another hapless motorist.

      I was surprised that evening not to hear that he was involved in some nasty fatal accident on the evening news.

  •  I get a kick out of the dear souls who... (7+ / 0-)

    ...cut you off then honk and give you the finger like you're the one who committed the offense.

    Interestingly, something like 90% of drivers consider themselves better than average drivers.

    Reminds me of what George Carlin said.  "You ever notice that anyone driving faster than you is a maniac and anyone driving slower than you is an idiot?"

    Arguing with idiots is like playing chess with a pigeon. As good as I am, the bird is going to shit on the board and strut around like it won anyway. –jbou (2013)

    by Simul Iustus et Peccator on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 05:25:46 PM PDT

    •  I don't gesture at people (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RiveroftheWest, kurt, Margouillat

      even if they try to hit me.

      Too many people out there carrying guns and looking for an excuse to use them.

      If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

      by Major Kong on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 05:02:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Around here, we have our own word for squids... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    patbahn, GreenMother

    Organ donors!

  •  When commuting between Denver and Fort Collins... (5+ / 0-)

    I caught one guy driving while reading his Bible.

    There's a man with a lot of faith...

  •  add "The Shoulder Surfer" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    foresterbob, Marko the Werelynx

    the person who needs to go somewhere fast enough that
    running down the shoulder is a critical need.

  •  The Road Rager (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Marko the Werelynx

    the person who needs mood stabilizer raging behind the wheel?

  •  LOL (5+ / 0-)
    It's like watching two glaciers drag race.
    That describes it perfectly.

    Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

    by elfling on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 05:41:40 PM PDT

  •  Then there's the one where you've pulled (3+ / 0-)

    into the left lane to pass. The driver behind you, who is at a safe distance, decides they have a sudden need to accelerate. Although it's clear you're planning to move back into the other lane after passing, they can't wait, so they pull into the right lane and block you from getting back in your own lane and out of the way.

    I'm amazed by people's courage and kindness in the face of everything and life.

    by LaraJones on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 05:53:27 PM PDT

  •  Sounds like good reasons to have a dash-cam (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DocGonzo, decisivemoment

    I happen to live in a state close enough to the northern CONUS border that we get a sprinkling of drivers from Quebec. They can usually be recognized A) by their speed and B) their weaving. And C) they don't (so I'm told) understand English if and when they get pulled over. Although, I'm also told they understand it well enough when a traffic court judge bangs his gavel and says "$500 fine." It's amazing how much English they know then.

    And since I can't resist, Memphis!

    http://youtu.be/...

    "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

    by xaxnar on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 06:14:23 PM PDT

  •  Hey ... don't forget The Fader ... (4+ / 0-)

    This is, unfortunately, all too common in my experience. The driver fades waaaaay to the left before he makes a right hand turn. Or fades waaaaay to the right before he makes a left hand turn. Woe betide the poor soul over in the next lane when The Fader does his thing!

    "Long term: first the rich get mean, then the poor get mean, and the rest is history." My brother Rob.

    by Pat K California on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 06:17:39 PM PDT

  •  What's even more fun: Russian drivers! (7+ / 0-)

    Just go on Youtube and look for Russian driving videos.

    The cops there are so corrupt that traffic law enforcement is useless. And there are lots of people trying to scam insurance companies by arranging "accidents" by cutting in front of you, or having a guy "accidentally" step into the road in front of you.

    So if you want to keep your insurance premiums from skyrocketing in Russia, your insurer will ask you to keep a dashcam running in your car.

    Thus cometh dashcam videos!

  •  "...two glaciers drag race..." (7+ / 0-)

    Now I have this damn perma-grin stuck to my face in spite of the fact that I'm in a bad mood and am headed to the gym.  Now I get to sit on the exercise bike with that Mona Lisa smile while bystanders wonder if I just farted.

    Thanks, Major Kong, thanks.

    "First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win". Mohandas K. Gandhi

    by DaveinBremerton on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 06:44:37 PM PDT

  •  Michigan has decent drivers (4+ / 0-)

    except for the speed.  The speed on expressways is 70 mph so everyone goes 80 except for some schmuck in the left lane.  It's pretty flat so that makes it a lot easier in a snow storm.  The first snow brings a lot of fender benders and then people remember how to drive in snow.  

    I pulled over for an ambulance in northern Jersey on a two lane road and the driver behind me went nuts. I moved there in the early 80's and was appalled at their driving stunts - reading while driving on I-287, backing down exit ramps, backing up shoulders of expressway.  For some reason, NJ drivers can't or won't read the big signs on expressways that tell you how far away your exit is.  They stay in the left lane til less than an 1/8 mile and then try to cut over three lanes. They do not know how to drive in snow.

    In Philadelphia, do not immediately start through an intersection when the light turns green.  The car opposing you will turn left in front of you the second the light turns green.  This is accepted, the driver is not being rude.  Why wait for traffic to clear?  They also do not pull into the intersection while waiting for the traffic to clear to make a left.  They also cannot drive in snow.  The lack of shoulders on roads, two lane windy roads with trees and ditches right next to the road makes it really dangerous to be out among them in a snow storm.

    •  I notice this down in Indiana. (3+ / 0-)

      Do not go anywhere on the day of the first significant snowfall of the winter; no one will remember how to drive on snow just yet. Give it a day, and it'll all be fine.

      When you come to find how essential the comfort of a well-kept home is to the bodily strength and good conditions, to a sound mind and spirit, and useful days, you will reverence the good housekeeper as I do above artist or poet, beauty or genius.

      by Alexandra Lynch on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 07:46:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The HSQ Index. Highway Stupidity Quotient. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Marko the Werelynx, BlackSheep1

    I coined the term decades ago to quantify and rate on the fly what I saw on the road while putting in a lot of windshield time. Had to rationalize it somehow, to keep from mounting a surplus GAU-8 30mm from an A-10 Warthog on the roof.

    I used to live in a place that is overrun with (#12) Snowbirds and (#13) Mexican Nationals, especially in the winter season, let alone the natives: the Rio Grande Valley of Texas.

    But it wasn't necessary to look at the license plates to classify either group, both very high HSQ scoring cohorts.

    We always wondered what the actual success rate was amongst the Snowbirds completing their migration. Surely at least 10-20% of them couldn't have survived that long bi-annual trek from and back to MN, N&SD, MO, IA, WI, OH, MI, NE, etc., all the way down to the bottom of Texas the way they drive. Highways to the North were surely littered with the bones of massive RV's driven by them.

    The Mexican Nationals are usually a totally different style, just as lethal.
    Of course the Mexicans just drive that way at home too, if you spend any time there you just adapt to it, and what appears as raw aggression is just the efficiency of jamming as much traffic into a given space and moving it as fast as possible.
    And you rarely saw accidents, although out on the highways, some of which, like in the Yucatan, had no speed limits, you might see some really spectacular wrecks.

    Oh yeah, #14's (like my ex).
    They zoom down the freeways, in usually the right lane, at up to 115mph or so, without noting the slower vehicle(s) ahead in the same lane until a few feet from it's rear bumper (driver can be seen through rear window preparing to die); then severely braking, making a two-wheeled lane change, and accelerating off again until tailpiping the next vehicle obstruction ahead.
    As a passenger, you just make your peace with the universe and hang on...

    We’re Ready, Wendy’s Ready! WTF Are We Waiting For? Bring ‘em on! The revolution has begun! Come and take it!

    by Bluefin on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 07:59:42 PM PDT

  •  Well, it looks like it's confession time. (2+ / 0-)

    I'm a bit of a #1, the Weaver. However, that's only if the pace of traffic permits the inoffensive passage of a non-descript Toyota truck through it, otherwise I hold back on my chromosonal need to pass those slackers. I do not excessively speed (aforementioned truck is not that fast!), I simply and smoothly maintain my cruising speed, which is that fastest speed that does not overtly attract the attention of John Law.

    I've motorcycled too, and lane splitting is, shall I say, "interesting." I was living in California, where it is legal, and had my share of near-misses, and even an attempted hit, from automobiles. Yes, someone deliberately tried to steer into the gap, but I was moving faster than they were, so it was all for naught. Gave me a big adrenaline rush for about 20 minutes though.

    I don't ride any more, mostly due to a neck issue which makes even driving a car or truck long distance somewhat taxing, so supporting a helmet is not going to work too well, no matter how light it is.

    I was never a "Squid", thank FSM, that simply wasn't my style. Having far more horsepower than brains, they are prime examples of Darwin Award winners.

    And yes, I became an Organ Donor when I started riding way back when, and I still am.

    A nice diary, Major, and great comments too! I went back and read #1 as well. T'd and R'd.

    And yeah, I know tarantulas don't really act like that at all, so no snarking, this is the internet damnit!

    by itzadryheat on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 08:05:29 PM PDT

  •  squids should be required to sign a donor card.... (0+ / 0-)

    as a condition of their being licensed to be douches..

  •  Now my blood is boiling. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Marko the Werelynx

    I had to make a simple trip of about 20 miles each way on a limited access highway in daylight last Monday.  TWICE on the first leg of the trip I was cut off by people who think that when entering such a highway, they do not need to yield to the traffic already on the road.  Apparently, they expect highway traffic to come to a halt for them.  Anyway, the first one was a truck carrying a wide load - could have killed a whole mess of people just barreling out from the ramp- the other was a woman in a minivan who gave me the finger when I honked at her for pulling out just inches (it seemed) ahead of me.

  •  This guy: #6. The Last-Second Decision Maker (5+ / 0-)

    may just be a native Washingtonian.

    We were AMAZED at last-minute lane sweeps to exit when we first arrived in WA. Everyone seemed to do them.

    My husband finally chatted with someone who used to be a drivers ed instructor. He said that it was standard curriculum to teach students to get on the freeway, get into the fast lane and stay there until they were ready to get off the freeway.... And then exit (I don't think they intended to teach that people should exit quite so abruptly. But that was the result).

    Apparently, that's why in WA, you find people parked in the fast lane going 54 mph (in a 60 zone), why they'll get into the HOV lane and go 50 because they're entitled to because they have a passenger, and why they do lane sweeps.

    WA was a lot less populated then and freeways had fewer lanes. Hopefully, parents aren't teaching their kids to drive the same way now.

    © grover


    So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

    by grover on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 08:15:56 PM PDT

    •  That does explain... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      grover

      a lot.  I see people treating the fast lane like the cruising lane (with no one in the cruising lanes and everyone in the fast lane).  Whoever taught these people like that should get ticketed every time one of their students does this...it is not a suggestion to maintain the left lane as a passing lane.  It is a law, but unfortunately is not enforced in this state (WA).

      "[I]n the absence of genuine leadership, they'll listen to anyone who steps up to the microphone...They're so thirsty for it they'll crawl through the desert toward a mirage, and when they discover there's no water, they'll drink the sand."

      by cardboardurinal on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 08:57:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not "students." (0+ / 0-)

        "Citizens." It seems to have been the standard of the public school curriculum when drivers Ed was still taught there.

        I guess if everyone does it, it is, ipso facto the law.

        I figure the offset is that NO ONE jay walks up here. That law is enforced rigorously, especially is Seattle. Not a single foot steps off the curb until the light turns green. You can't say that about pretty much any other major US city.

        For entertainment, you can sit in a downtown restaurant and watch tourists try it. Mostly, being so polite, we try to hold them back and warn them. But some tourists are slippery or in such a dang rush (on vacation: I know...) and get through. And well...

        :)

        © grover


        So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

        by grover on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 10:12:50 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Maybe I should have said... (0+ / 0-)

          former students.

          "[I]n the absence of genuine leadership, they'll listen to anyone who steps up to the microphone...They're so thirsty for it they'll crawl through the desert toward a mirage, and when they discover there's no water, they'll drink the sand."

          by cardboardurinal on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 11:02:09 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  don't forget about the dusk drivers! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Marko the Werelynx

    These are the people who think their headlights are for seeing the road with. They don't realize that, in lower light, they are virtually invisible. Sure, they can see just fine, but no one else can see them

  •  Everybody's got their favorite story.... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Marko the Werelynx, BlackSheep1

    One of mine, from my years of driving a big truck across this fair land occurred in LA (NOT Lower Alabama) at about 7 PM on a Sunday evening. It was a lane splitter.

    Not your average lane splitter, mind you. This was a Harley Hog, driven by one of your above-mentioned research candidates (epic, btw!).

    I saw him coming up, and decided to hug the shoulder in the slow lane. Not enough, he moved closer as he came up beside me. Suddenly, all I saw was his right hand trying to find a hold on my bumper. There was a witness: his pal on the side of the road waiting for him. He uprighted himself, cut me off and hit the shoulder.

    In my right rear-view, I saw his pal punch him to the ground.
    I should have thanked him, but.... Sometimes, things just work out. Me? 80k pounds, plus two in the drawers.

    Nurse Kelley says my writing is brilliant and my soul is shiny - who am I to argue?
    Economic
    Left/Right: -7.75
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -4.51

    by Bud Fields on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 08:35:48 PM PDT

  •  The Jersey Swerve (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Simplify, llywrch

    In NE NJ, most suburbs were carved out of farmland with century-old winding roads connecting them. NJ decided to run "Jersey barriers" of linked concrete along the center dividers of the (mysteriously and nearly anonymously) numbered roads, for miles and miles. Little developments are islands unto themselves, linked by long threads between. So in NJ, when you miss your turn, you've got to keep going many miles, and then many miles back. Or get hopelessly lost among the extremely badly signed but excellently paved roadways.

    So NJ drivers learn that they'd better make that turn. Even when they're in NYC, because they're from NJ. But in NYC those turns come up quick, a few seconds after the last wrong turn. So in NYC we're always seeing a yellow NJ plate blurring across all the lanes as it swerves to make its turn at (or just past) the last  possible second before it's too late. Even though it could just make the next turn and circle back. Because this isn't Jersey.

    But they sure drive like it is.

    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

    by DocGonzo on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 08:37:16 PM PDT

  •  That's great. I call The Weaver, The Skier. (0+ / 0-)

    On ski slopes, faster traffic has the right away. Apparently, that guy never got the message that he was back from his winter vacation, or he still fantasizes about doing the slalom down snow covered mountains.

  •  And then, there's Vegas. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    trueblueliberal, jhecht

    It's in a class all by itself.

    "There is nothing more exhilarating than to be shot at without result." - Winston Churchill

    by Dingodude on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 09:22:02 PM PDT

  •  The folks who work the emergency rooms (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RiveroftheWest

    call them (organ) donor-cycles.

    “The answer must be, I think, that beauty and grace are performed whether or not we will or sense them. The least we can do is try to be there.” ― Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

    by 6412093 on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 10:13:36 PM PDT

  •  The worst are the kids (0+ / 0-)

    who dart out into the street to retrieve a ball they failed to catch. Haven't their parents taught them that motorist privilege includes being able to drive as fast as one wishes?

    warning: snark above

    by NE2 on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 03:36:04 AM PDT

  •  #11 Should be the entire state of TN. (0+ / 0-)

    Everything you've described fits Nashville to a 't'. And Knoxville, and Chattanooga, and everywhere in between.

    The more we are, the less we need.

    by Fiddlegirl on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 04:34:09 AM PDT

    •  I'm not sure (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BlackSheep1

      I've driven in Nashville and I still think Memphis is significantly worse.

      Maybe I just haven't spent enough time there to get the full experience.

      If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

      by Major Kong on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 05:04:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  On Thursday morning on the way to work (3+ / 0-)

    In our small town at 8AM, I saw two people run red lights in front of me and one idiot run a stop sign  with traffic going both ways on the street in front of them.  The crazy... it burns!

    "I come close to despair because so many of the pieces of the country are broken, and when you see that, you have two choices: You can give up, or you can do something about it." Elizabeth Warren

    by Ed in Montana on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 05:06:35 AM PDT

  •  I would have loved to have written this diary, but (0+ / 0-)

    unlike you, I don't believe I could have done so minus the curse words.

    Beautiful!

    And I learned a new term: Squid! as opposed to a R.U.B. which are what bikers call the upper middle class folks that ride really expensive bikes and wear lots of tough looking leathers.

    It stands for Rich Urban Biker. :) shades of Wild Hogs.

    Gentlemen, congratulations. You're everything we've come to expect from years of government training (Zed, MIB).

    by GreenMother on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 05:42:07 AM PDT

  •  I'll take you on your word on Memphis (0+ / 0-)

    But I've lived and driven around in NY, SoCal, and Baltimore for nearly 30 years without an accident.

    I moved to Chicago three years ago.

    And have been hit three times since.

    Not seriously, thank the FSM.

  •  My current pet peeve (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cassandra Waites

    Drivers who either don't signal, or signal at exactly the moment they start turning, which is about as helpful as using a condom after sex. Of the two, I find the latter far more bewildering.

    If you don't signal then you're just rude or ignorant, and often dangerous (especially to us cyclists who NEED to know if you're going to make that right or left turn right in front of us).

    But if you signal at the moment you start turning, you're telling the world that you are, by definition, a literal moron, because the signal at that point is clearly of no help to anyone because they can SEE you turning! You're supposed to signal before you turn, to let everyone know, not AS you turn, you idiot!!!

    I suspect that a lot of younger drivers believe that turn signals must accompany, not precede turns. Which by definition makes them morons, because they've presumably recently been taught or learned how turn signals work and why you use them. Plus, it's freaking common sense. Why else would you signal, and what purpose does signaling as you turn serve?

    These people need to punished by having this sticker put on their cars:

    "Caution, moron driver inside"

    "Reagan's dead, and he was a lousy president" -- Keith Olbermann 4/22/09

    by kovie on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:14:28 AM PDT

  •  NYPD needs a special category! In almost 20 (0+ / 0-)

    years in NYC, I can literally count the few times I can remember a cop car actually stopping for a red light. They just barrel through, and you, the civilian with the right of way, have to yield to them, even if you are going fast and already dangerously through the intersection.  They often do it with no lights or sirens, and when they do use the code 3, they shut it off after going through the intersection, as there never was an emergency in the first place.  NYPD just cannot be bothered to follow the law.
    This is the immutable culture here.

    Ayn sucks. Please know I am not rude. I cannot rec anything from this browser. When I rec or post diaries I am a guest at some exotic locale's computer.

    by Floyd Blue on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:43:37 AM PDT

  •  Remember the George Carlin routine?? You ever (0+ / 0-)

    notice that you are the only driver going the right speed???

    (mimes driving as he honks the horn impatiently at the person in front of him) Come on, speed up, you moron!!!!!

    (suddenly mimes turning his head to see a guy passing him by at a high rate of speed) Whoa!! Look at that maniac!!!

    Ayn sucks. Please know I am not rude. I cannot rec anything from this browser. When I rec or post diaries I am a guest at some exotic locale's computer.

    by Floyd Blue on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 06:46:55 AM PDT

  •  Can Memphis be worse than Madison? (0+ / 0-)

    My favorite Madison driver move; driving 5-10 miles below the speed limit in the left lane, and than running the light when it turns red.

    I'm no philosopher, I am no poet, I'm just trying to help you out - Gomez (from the song Hamoa Beach)

    by jhecht on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 07:26:31 AM PDT

  •  I would often play "idiot polo" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ApostleOfCarlin, llywrch

    on the 2 hour drive from Phoenix to Tucson and back.  Most parts of that stretch of I-10 now have a full three lanes in each direction but for the longest time it was only 2.  If you wanted to make good time the logical thing was to stay in the left lane and keep up to speed with the flow of traffic.  If you wanted to go slower you stayed in the right lane and, if you needed to pass, you waited for a sizable opening, moved over without holding anyone else back, sped up to the flow in the left, passed and got back to the right when you were done.  If EVERYONE did that, the traffic would simply flow nicely with very few slowdowns.  

    Since there is no restrictive law in Arizona keeping slow trucks out of the left lane though, sometimes they would pass others slowly.  Heaven forbid if there is at all a rise in elevation during their maneuver.  Still, if that occurs, common sense just says you stay in the left lane, put up with the temporary drop in speed and in a mile or so you'll be back to cruising as fast as the lane and occasional cops will allow.  Invariably though there is that impatient prick that decides they're going to make the end around maneuver and pass the line of cars on the right, a scheme that always just makes the situation worse for the rest of us because they wedge their way in at the last second and suddenly everyone behind has to brake suddenly.

    This is where the polo game comes in.  As soon as you see them speeding around you, you close the gap between you and the car in front of you, ensuring they can't wedge themselves in.  Others, seeing what you're doing, will use the tactic as well.  If you are the controlling gap, the idiot comes up against the back of the the obstruction in the right lane and you see them forced to fall back again.  As soon as they do you go back to a safe following distance again.  I have seen these morons try this over and over, gain ground, lose it back, etc, etc. and actually end up behind me in a 100 mile stretch.  

    •   Passive aggressive driving is still aggressive (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kurt

      The maneuver you describe sets up a dangerous situation, since inevitably most of the morons in the left lane are speeding at 5-15 mph over the limit with insufficient following distance.

      Consider: A) You probably don't have enough following distance, B) You're accelerating to close a gap that's probably already too small, C) you're trying to block someone else from getting into your lane, so you're trusting on their alertness and fear of accident/injury/death to keep you out of trouble. D) For all your trouble, you just gain (or keep) one car length, while you wait for the rest of the pack to push around whatever the real impediment to travel is.

      The cool thing to do is just let the faster car into your lane, fall back a bit to give them a safe distance, and maybe get over into the right lane if you realize that you're the roadblock.

      Unless there's a checkered flag at the end of the trip, driving isn't a contest.

    •  That (0+ / 0-)

      is a very dangerous and aggressive manuever, just to keep someone who is driving in a way that you do not approve from merging. Has it ever occurred to you that you are behaving like, well, a prick?

  •  Aggressive drivers can be useful. (1+ / 0-)

    Occasionally when I'm going on the interstate, and know there are cops lurking about, I'll notice an especially fast and aggressive driver (#1 & #4, which almost applies to #8...)

    I'll deliberately follow such drivers, at a decent distance, say several hundred feet, especially if I notice they have radar detectors. I appoint them to be my speed monkeys, and use them to spring speedtraps in my stead.

  •  There's a trick to getting Boston's masshole (3+ / 0-)

    drivers to give you a wide berth. Drive a beat up old '70s American land yacht. One look at you and they know you couldn't care less if their brand new Lexus is the reason for your car's latest dent. Hell, you might not even notice. I went to college in that area. I had friends who swore by this.

    Any jackass can kick down a barn, but it takes a good carpenter to build one.--Sam Rayburn

    by Ice Blue on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 09:25:03 AM PDT

  •  I dont know if you're a professional driver (0+ / 0-)

    but these are actually, seriously excellent tips.

    Add in use your turn signals,never cut people off, and do NOT lock up your breaks in front of a semi.

    A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

    by cdreid on Fri Sep 27, 2013 at 03:15:32 PM PDT

  •  About Rolling Roadblock Trucks (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cassandra Waites, kurt

    The driver of the rolling roadblock wants to be in that situation about as much as you want to be stuck behind him.

    Once upon a time I held a CDL. As a new driver, I was given one of the crappiest trucks in the fleet, all of which were governed as about 5 miles above the speed limit (then 55 for trucks in most states) for safety and fuel efficiency reasons.

    The problem is that some fleets governed their trucks at just at the speed limit, especially places that pay their drivers by the hour (most truckers get paid by the mile).

    To repeat, most truckers get paid by the mile, so most drivers have every incentive in the world to speed. Imagine any other job where you can get a 5-15% pay raise by boosting your speed by the same amount!

    Also, heavy trucks, when they have a load on take a while to accelerate. There are either 8 or 16 gears (depending on model) that you have to go through to get to top speed and up-shifting and down-shifting means that you lose momentum. If you're not good at shifting gears quickly, you can lose a lot of speed, which can take miles to regain.

    Furthermore, heavy trucks lose a lot of momentum going uphill in addition to the momentum you lose having to manually shift gears the whole time. Having to lose a lot of speed at the beginning of a long uphill climb can turn what should be an easy climb into a car into a long, slow haul for a truck.

    And, finally, governing truck speed means that acceleration is governed, too. So, crappy top speed = crappy acceleration.

    But, the laws of probability being what they are, inevitably you have a situation where the slowest truck on the road (A) gets in front of the second slowest truck (B).

    So, when A meets B, this is what happens.

    A isn't going to slow down further, since if he loses his speed (especially on an up-slope) he's never going to get it back, and B is trying to keep his speed since if he loses its speed he's never going to be able to pass A.

    So, B will usually see A about a mile away on a decent road in good weather conditions and will know what he's in for. If the traffic and terrain is favorable, he will try to put the pedal to the metal and zoom past A on a downslope, using every bit of momentum he has, listening to the overspeed warning peeping at him, and hoping that no 4-wheelers or other impediments to commerce force him to slam on the brakes before the "mating dance" is complete.

    Otherwise, B just pulls out into the left lane, everything else be damned, and tries to pass A as fast as he can, running just about neck and neck with A for several long minutes, with maybe with a twinge of conscience as he looks in his side mirrors and sees all the traffic stacked up behind him.

    In this situation, the most dangerous thing for B is the "4-wheeler guillotine" where some jackrabbit scoots around B just as B passes A, getting in front of A before B can get over in the right lane where he belongs. This risks truck A rear-ending the jackrabbit for some reason, or truck B driving him off the road or hitting him as B tries to get back in the right lane.

    Otherwise, B just hangs out as far behind A as he can, matching A's speed, swearing about the stupidity of truck manufacturers, cheapass trucking company accountants and all the damned slow trucks on the road, and continues to plot his attempt to pass A with the fevered intensity of a Hashshāshīn.

    Of course, all this assumes that the speed limit is the same for cars and heavy trucks. In many states, it was lower for trucks (due to the machinations of railroad lobbyists and misguided traffic safety concerns), making it even harder for B to get around A as the four-wheelers zip by.

  •  I dunno (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Minnesota Slim

    about all the "passing lane" stuff, I have just as much right to drive at or near the speed limit in the left lane as you do to speed. More, in fact, since you are breaking the law and I am not. I will get out of your way if it is safe to do so but don't expect me to make any extra effort just so you can continue to speed. Although I once drove across town at 5 mph under the speed limit, with my left blinker on, just to see what it would be like when I got old. You people actually kiss your spouses with those mouths?

  •  Gamers (0+ / 0-)

    A lot of comments here link reckless behaviors to alleged personality disorders or privileged mindsets. Yes, I'm an old fart, but I attribute much of this misbehavior to drivers -- usually male -- who came of age playing racing games at the arcade or on a gaming console or pc. Speeding, weaving, tailgating, cutting-off, blocking, etc. -- all to gain some imagined advantage over anyone and everyone else on the road.

    It's not an effing game. When you've crashed you don't get another "life." Grow up, boys, or stay home.

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