By Gary Lloyd
It happens every time I leave the house.
I blow the horn to startle another driver’s attention away from the cell phone and back to the road so he or she maneuvers back across the double-yellow lines into their own lane. I try not to get T-boned because someone has run the light. I watch, in amazement, as the big, red “STOP” sign is apparently invisible.
These are daily occurrences that I deal with, that I sadly watch others deal with. I listen to those not paying attention fire their horns back in disbelief that they’ve done something wrong, wait for three, four and five vehicles to zoom left after the green turn signal has blinked to red.
These wrongs seem to be on the uptick lately, especially in our coverage area. I witnessed the worst example last month.
I was second in the turn lane going left from Edwards Lake Road to Lowe’s. The light was green, but cars were coming from the opposite direction. An old junker of a car came hurdling out of the McDonald’s parking lot to my right, nearly swiping the right side of my truck. It barreled by me and the truck in front of me, cutting us off in front of the turn lane, and proceeded to flash in front of oncoming traffic toward Lowe’s.
The truck in front of me then followed that car closely in the parking lot, no doubt cussing the driver. I parked a few spots away from that car, and as I walked past it toward the store, two women emerged. I told the driver she needed to learn to drive, that she was putting other people in danger.
She and her passenger laughed.
I told them again, told them it was not a joke.
The passenger doubled over in laughter, and the driver quipped, “Well, you got here, didn’t you?”
Is this seriously the mindset behind the wheel these days? That drivers can selfishly, dangerously and stupidly disobey the rules of the road and not consider others’ safety? That a text message is greater than a life? That getting somewhere a few seconds earlier is worth putting yourself and others at risk?
It sure seems that way, and this must-get-there-as-quickly-as-possible mindset needs to change. Plan better. Leave earlier. Put down the cell phone.
I’m tired of typing up short articles about men, women and children dying in car accidents, being told that speed and distraction were factors.
Accidents do and will happen. But foolishness and distractions are always preventable.
Contact Gary Lloyd at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @GaryALloyd.