car tuning

5 Jun 2007

Who are the worst drivers on the road?

Worst drivers:- We asked Torquecars members which drivers they thought were the worst on the roads and got a plethora of vitriol and tirades of frustration.

Top of the hate list came taxi drivers with their percieved "I own the road" attitude. Perhaps this is a little harsh as Taxi drivers clock up more miles in one year than some motorists do in 10! Perhaps it is true that familiarity breeds contempt and as we all encounter our fair share of taxi drivers it could go some way to explain their unpopularity. The cited reasons for annoyance include, double parking, cutting in too sharply after overtaking, aggresively pushing through gaps and general rudeness never thanking drivers for giving way and never allowing other motorists to pull out on to busy roads or giving way themselves. It is probably fair to say their is a vicious circle going on here with taxi drivers experiencing bad manners on the road from other motorists and responding in kind. I'm pretty sure you'll actually find that Taxi drivers have fewer accidents per mile they drive than other motorists.

The second most hated group are the hesistant drivers. Quite a wide ranging category typically characterised by undue caution, hesitation, slow speed and generally lack of assertion. Many drivers fall into this category and we probably all have been here at one stage of our drving life. Typically the hestitant driver includes the new inexperienced driver, the nervous old driver and the timid Sundays and special occasions only drivers. We must remember that we will also fall into this category if perhaps we are driving a new car which we are not used to for the first time, or perhaps our car is experiencing a technical problem and may cut out on us at any time so there is a need for caution. We may find ourselves in an unfamiliar area and be attempting to navigate but struggle to get in the right lane in time something which typically affects us on holiday. So perhaps we should cut a little slack for the hesitant driver and encourage them rather than sit of their boot driving aggresively and putting them off!

White van drivers also came in for some stick too. The way they cut up other motorists, drive really close to the car in front, jump lights and just leave the van parked in the middle of the road with its hazzard lights on (the hazzard lights do not in fact render the car invisible when turned on as many white van drivers seem to think!) We have a little sympathy for the stressful life of the delivery driver with ever shorter deadlines, early starts, vague addresses and route plans and a need to deliver to addresses which have no convenient parking facilities.

Old drivers also get to have their own category. They seem to have little awareness of other motorists keeping focussed on a very small patch of road in front of them (even when reversing). We know that many old drivers have very good driving skills, but when a driver only covers 1 or 2 miles per week he cannot possibly expect to stay sharp. Add into the mix the fact that the roads are very different from when these OAPs learnt (if they went through a formal set of tuition and tests) and the fact that reflexes and motor skills diminish with age along with eyesight. Per mile driven the older driver has the greatest number of accidents than any other motorist. We at Torquecars support the practical step of a retest, particularly for the over 70 year old driver and many of our members would even support a refresher test and course every 10 years to ensure that all motorists on the road conform to the required standard.

Mothers on the school run also got some criticism. I guess the effect of getting up early, having been kept awake all the night becuse little Jonny is crying and then taking the other 2 kids to school in the morning, with them argueing in the back over whose turn it is to choose the in drive movie, probably equals the equivalent of driving whilst 2 times over the breath alcahol limit. The stress and frustration the mothers experience is clearly demonstrated in their driving style and the way they park (dump) the car half off the road and pull out without so much as looking for other cars.

4x4 drivers, cyclists, bus drivers and HGV drivers also came in for some criticism but to be honest we couldn't write an article entitled "most hated motorists" and then include everyone!

Driving is a priviledge and not a right. We all do silly or plain daft things behind the wheel and rarely give other drivers much slack when they do daft things. Generally speaking if we all showed consideration and patience with even the hated groups of driver the roads would be a much better place for all of us.

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