Top Post Dawg
- Aug 3, 2003
- Saint Paul (ex-San Diego)
- 2003 Golf GL 5-spd, red; 2003 Golf GLS 5-spd, indigo blue; 2003 Jetta TDI wagon, Candy White (SOLD); 2003 Jetta TDI wagon, silver
From the Detroit News
http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060322/OPINION03/603220335/1149/AUTO01 .Please do fellow drivers a good turn and use blinkers
I have a fairly straightforward list of pet peeves about drivers today.
Tops are cell phone users behind the wheel, followed by left lane hogs and people who slam on their brakes when they think another vehicle might be getting too close behind them.
But lately, another issue has been rising to the top: American drivers who don't use their turn signals when changing lanes.
I see it every time now when I'm on a freeway. They just don't care
I thought I was just unlucky. But a survey of drivers conducted by auto insurer Response Insurance and released last week confirmed my observations.
In fact, the survey found that 57 percent just don't care to signal other drivers for lane changes.
The excuses they gave are astounding.
Forty-two percent of the non-signallers said they didn't have enough time to signal. This leaves me wondering just how much thought they put into changing lanes. It sounds like they go from one lane to another on a whim.
Another 23 percent admitted they don't use their blinkers because they're lazy! Hey, at least they're honest. But this doesn't make me feel any better driving alongside them. It would be better if they were simply too lazy to drive at all.
Seventeen percent said they eschew the turn signals because, well, when they put them on they often forget to turn them off. So, in their minds, it's better just to avoid the issue.
To this I wondered: If these people can't even figure out a car's blinkers, how are they coping with cell phones and computers? Never mind. I don't want to know.
What I'd really love to know is how these people got their driver's licenses.
Other excuses cited from the survey are just as silly.
For example, 11 percent of non-signallers said they don't think letting other drivers know about a lane change is important.
Eight percent sounded like immature kids, saying that they don't signal because they've seen other drivers not signal. I wonder if these folks would go off a cliff if they saw another driver do it. (I can only hope.)
But the most bizarre excuse has to be this one: Seven percent of drivers surveyed said they don't use their blinkers because it "adds excitement to driving."
This last group of drivers clearly has been watching too many X-Games on TV. They may want to imperil their own lives, but they have no business seeking thrills and excitement on the highways, where the rest of us count on some amount of driver sanity and etiquette.
And yes, this etiquette includes using those turn signals to tell the rest of us what lane they intend to occupy.
Ann Job is a California-based freelance writer and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org