Yet another killing on our roads early today. There has been 13 deaths in the last 72 hours on Irish roads, bringing the total of deaths on our roads so far this year to 218.

Yesterday I drove to Enniscorthy for a meeting and on my way I saw at least 6 really poor and dangerous manoeuvres by drivers on our roads. One in particular made me realise that it is not speed that kills, it’s drvier attitude.

As I was driving down the dual carraigeway just past Arklow, I glanced out my rear view mirror and spotted a BMW in the distance well behind me. However it was obvious it was breaking the speed limit as I was just on the limit at 100KPH and it was catching me fast. Within seconds, it was now right beside me. The driver was a professional looking lady, that must have been in a hurry to some important meeting I imagine.

As she flew by me, she decided it would be a good idea to pull into my lane and slam on to slow below the speed limit to 80KPH. I have to admit, this irked me a little. She just wanted to be in front of … everyone I guess.

Not content with driving at 80KPH I pulled out into the outside lane to overtake her and get some clearance ahead of me and so that I wasn’t tailgating her. Up ahead I could see the road was now merging into one lane. I thought ok, I better speed up to get plenty of distance between myself and this car that was slightly behind me at this stage. Up at the merge, there was a “long vehicle”, which was moving pretty slow. I gave myself plenty of time to get distance between the car behind me and the long vehicle in front to move into this space.

So now was the time to make the move….. I took a look in my rear view mirror, seen there was plenty of time to move in, indicated to move and finally took one last look in my side mirror…… and there she was. This woman had accellerated to prevent me from pulling into this merging lane. There was still room to move into the lane, but not enough to do safely as I would be soon slamming on my brakes because of the long vehicle in front. So I speed up a little more to try gain more room. But, this woman persisted, even though my indicator was on, she just wasn’t letting me in. We were now on the merge, she was still slighly behind me yet, she wouldn’t budge. This woman was happy enough to push me onto the other side of the road where there was oncoming traffic. My only option now was to slam on and hope the other cars coming behind me had seen what was going on and would be prepared to slow down. Luckily for my sake they did…..

At this stage I was rightly royaled. I know my driving detoriorated while I tried to get this womans attention to ask her why she did what she did. I now was a menace to others on the road. But this is my point, we are all guilty of causing accidents on the roads, no matter how good of drivers we think we are.

We could do something very simply wrong, such as driving slow, not indicating, etc. But this could be causing huge strss for people driving behind us, who in turn, their driving gets worse.

So I for once agree with Gay Byrne and a Policitian…. (strange that) – there is nothing the the police can do that will stop this carnage ut ourselves. Until we take this whole debacle seriously, the roads are just not going to be a safe place to be.

I still think that there are some issues that have to be addressed: 

  1. Drivers attitude
    This in my opinion is the worst of them all. It covers numerous situations, from drink driving to road manners etc. 
    It’s strange that peoples attitudes and personalities change  once they are behind the wheel of car. How many of us would stick their fingers up or shout and scream at someone who has stepped in front of you in a queue in a shop? But yet, we’d easily do it while behind the wheel of a car.
  2. Points System
    It doesn’t work, there is not enough enforcement of the law. People know they can get away with it because there is no-one there to punish their wrong doings.
  3. Speeding
    Well I think both the drivers and the government are to blame here. Again many reasons, but how can a country with such a high death rate on our roads increase the speed limit to 120KPH. They say that learner drivers aren’t allowed on motorways because they have no experience at driving their car at such a high speed….. Well eh, in theory no-one should have ever been driving at 75MPH before… so why increase it? 110 KPH is around 68 MPH, why not decrease instead of increasing??
    From a drivers point of view…. why are most people sheep? Once one person breaks a law on the road, others follow – especially when it comes to speed.
  4. Learner Drivers
    I feel sorry for SOME of these. I know when I started driving, I didn’t have someone with a full driving license that could be around everytime I needed experience on the road. If that was enforced, I wouldn’t be driving now. I think we need to look at this and work something out that suits the majority.
    The ones I don’t feel sorry for are the ones that shouldn’t be on the road….. get them off!!

I could go on – but the more I think about it, the more messed up it seems.

By the end of July it is expected that there will be 20 more of us dead from road accidents….. How sad is that?

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