Anyone who goes out driving with me knows I’ll identify two times of day most dangerous for poor driver behaviour.The morning peak hour and the evening peak hour. In the AM, drivers are all pretty much in drone mode – “I don’t want to go to work, do I really have to go, I don’t want to go” but of course they know that “Hi Ho, Hi Ho, it’s off to work I go, because I owe”. Inattention, poor observation skills and very slow reaction times abound.
The period I regard as the most dangerous however, is the evening peak. Have a look at these two videos and you’ll see exactly what I mean. Drivers will quite literally come close to running you off the road in their bid to just ‘get home’. Watch the red SUV and the black hatch in the first vid, and then look for them in the second one. The time and distance between the two vids is maybe 12 minutes and 8 klicks. The camera car (me) arrived at the traffic lights in the second vid less than 30 seconds behind both, yet both were prepared to sit behind fast moving traffic less than one car length over that distance and time.
Then watch the Gold coloured Mazda on the second vid. The dopey driver had either remembered he had to get milk on the way home, or wanted a six pack from the Koala Tavern. Either way, changing lanes in the manner he did is just plain wrong, extremely dangerous and creates a major hazard for the drivers around him.
It’s easy for me to talk to students about these behaviours, but the proof is in the viewing, and in the being there. Until you have to drive amongst these people, you really can’t imagine just how deadly these behaviours can be.