When the drivers stop to give a pedestrian in a crosswalk the right of way, unless there is a compelling reason not to, the pedestrian should take it and proceed. Yesterday I stopped along with the driver to my left to enable a man standing in the middle of 4 lanes of traffic to cross.
Have you taken the Drive Smart Refresher Test yet? A passing mark is 80%, can you do it? According to ICBC, of the first 45,000 tests taken 40% have resulted in a fail.
Give it a try, you might be surprised!
ICBC, the Oceanside RCMP, Central Island Traffic Services and our Speedwatch volunteers will be taking part in Distracted Driving Awareness month. According to ICBC, 9 people die in collisions on Vancouver Island each year from driving while distracted. In addition approximately 960 crashes occur every day in B.C., many of these caused by distracted or inattentive driving.
Seven years ago I wrote about a safe trip to school, commenting on my experience that a significant part of the safety problem was caused by teachers and parents themselves. Their driving behaviour as they showed up to work or dropped off their children sometimes left a lot to be desired. Did they not realize that they were creating their own problem?
It's night and I'm driving into the gray cotton of fog caused by a lingering temperature inversion. Vision is limited, the roads are wet, it's just a few degrees above freezing and some of the traffic to my left is driving like it's a sunny afternoon in August. As they whoosh by me nose to tail at speeds exceeding the posted limit I marvel at what I imagine is their ability to see so much better than I can. I also admire their ability to anticipate and use quick reflexes to get themselves out of trouble if something unexpected happens ahead.
It's not nice to take vicarious pleasure from the troubles of other drivers, but sometimes I can't help myself. Yesterday I found myself #3 in line waiting for a red light to turn green at an intersection. The vehicle in front of me was a shiny Porsche Boxster convertible driven by a mature male. The light turned green and he stalled it. By the time he had started it again the light had turned red and we all ended up waiting for the next cycle.
Over my lifetime so far, I've gone from a child who rode on a foam mattress in the back of our family station wagon on summer road trips to a grandfather who would not dream of driving anywhere without grand daughters safely buckled up in proper child restraints. Needless to say, wearing my own seatbelt has become a reflex action. I'm uncomfortable if I don't wear it and don't notice it when I do.
That said, it is still not uncommon to find people who are unbelted, even though B.C. has had mandatory seatbelt use rules since October 1977.
I am blessed with a steady stream of questions that arrive from visitors to the DriveSmartBC web site. Whenever I am short on ideas to base my weekly article on I can count on someone to make a suggestion. This week the operative word is short, and I'm going to deal with questions that haven't developed into a full article but deserve a response.
I watched a woman run a stop sign the other day while I was out for a walk. I knew that this was a route that she traveled often and she should be familiar with stopping there. I could see that she was checking around her as she approached the T intersection so I'm going to assume that she was in a hurry and made the conscious decision to slow down instead of stop.
Sometimes when I read articles on road safety I come across one that really resonates with me. A story from 2008 written by Paul Hergott titled Drivers Need to Smarten Up When Out on the Road is one of them. Paul starts off by saying "We’ve got ourselves a serious attitude problem. We see driving as a right."
Very little has changed since then except perhaps that this attitude is becoming even more prevalent on our roads in 2017.