Worst Drivers in North America

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by BillO, Mar 13, 2011.

  1. BillO

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Nov 24, 2008
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    Okay,

    So, I'm Canadian, eh! (by way of Ireland and Ghana) And I was sure that the worst drivers in North America were a toss-up between those in Toronto and those in Montreal. However, I am now down in southern Florida by way of I-75. I've done this trip many times before, but my choice of driving times was different. Before I usually avoided large centres during busy hours. This was not possible this time. As a result, I have to re-assess my position on NA's worst. To offset any pokes at NY, Boston or LA, I have driven in those locals extensively and do not feel they are as bad as the one's I am about to disclose.

    Here goes...

    The drivers in the greater Cincinnati area. OMFG!!!! Now, the road system around Cincinnati surely lends a hand to making driving in that area real bad, but it does not force the kind of behaviour I saw. The folks down there completely ignore the lane lines. As far as I can tell, they treat all roads as one big lane in which you can travel in pretty much any direction you please. There was one particular incident that made a huge impact one me. Right about where I275, I75, I71 and maybe some other roads meet, some guy decided to stop, turn hard right and cross 5 lanes (they were marked as such anyway) of traffic in order not to miss his exit. Now, the only way I noticed this in amongst the other random movement on the highway at that time is because he did this right in front of me causing me to test my anti-lock breaking system and nearly scaring the SH!7 out of myself, my wife, my son and my niece. We missed him by mere inches as did the truck behind me just miss me and so on.

    The drivers in southeastern Georgia (from just north of Macon to Valdosta). Down here, the folks travel along at much greater than the speed limit, but in tight little groups separated by many miles. They will then randomly and suddenly slow down. We are talking from 15-20 mph over the speed limit to 15-20 below the speed limit. Now, this might be okay if folks left a little space between the cars/trucks, but no. Not in southeastern Georgia. In fact, any attempt to leave 2 seconds between you and the car in front is re-paid with a stream of cars trying to fill the ‘gap’. So, the sudden slow downs are accompanied by the squeal of tires and the acrid smell of break linings and rubber smoke. If you can somehow get yourself out of one of these groupings, traveling in Georgia is just fine.

    The drivers in Southern Florida (in particular, drivers on the Florida Turnpike). Here you have predominantly 2 kin ds of drivers. Those that drive 20 mph under the speed limit and those that drive 20 mph over the speed limit. It seems that those that drive over the speed limit actually do know what that the different lanes have different purposes. However, those that drive 20 mph below the speed limit have no idea why there are 2 or 3, or even more lanes. What happens then, is that you will get 2, 3, or even 4 of the folks that drive at 20 mph below the limit all driving next to each other across all the lanes. This drives the folks that drive 20 mph over the speed limit totally up the wall and they begin to do horrible things on the road. But that’s not all. Now throw into the mix a total weirdo like me that drives at the speed limit. Well, I don’t have a problem with the +20 guy’s. I keep to the right (except to pass) and so do they. They will come up on me, move into the left lane, pass me, move back into the right lane and mosey on. Not the –20 guys though. Case 1 – 2 lanes, slow guy in the right lane. I will close in until 4 or so seconds separate us, then indicate and move into the left lane to pass them. They notice me and speed up!!!. I pull back into the right lane, and then they slow back down! Sigh….! This can be repeated several times. Case 2 – 2 lanes, slow guy in the left lane. I just keep on driving, slow guy notices I’m about to pass, he speeds up, pulls in front of me, and then slows down! Sigh…cry…shake my head. Case 3 – 3 or more lanes, slow guy in leftmost lane, slow guy in lane 2 lanes to the right, me in lane between them. I just keep driving. 2 slow guy’s notice me and speed up. They both try to pull in front of me at the same time. They hit each other, go careening off back into their original lanes. I pass right on through LMAO!!!

    No word of a lie. All these things happened to me this Friday and Saturday on my way to the Everglades.

    So, any one else go some input on this? Do you have experience with worse drivers?



    Snowwy Egret - Mrazek Pond - Everglades NP - March 13, 2011

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    Last edited: Mar 13, 2011
  2. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    Hard to say when there are so many ways drivers can be so bad. I am especially unimpressed with the guys to use guns on the freeways. Seems like every year there is a shooting incident.

    I especially love it, if someones have two feet clearance more than their car needs, they slid into the gap. Depressing really. If you ask these jokers they will, with complete sincerely, tell you they are really good drivers, and have never had a wreck (which proves it in their mind).
     
  3. BillO

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Nov 24, 2008
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    I know the type. The sliders, not the gunmen. It would really suck to get shot at while driving.:eek:
     
  4. loosewire

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 25, 2008
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    Every day in South Florida some motorist shoots another motorist.
    Elergades city years ago the federal agents arrested the whole town
    for drug runnining,did you see the rod and gun club.You should have let me know you were
    coming. I was at Everglades city a few months ago on a canoe trip,,saw some
    really big alligators,you need a guild to really see the everglades at its best. Are you still down here.
    Summer time the skeeker will eat you alive,visit in the cool weather.There a lot of the drivers
    in the canals along the roads,they find them 20 years later.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2011
  5. BillO

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Nov 24, 2008
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    Thanks for the offer loosewire. I am still down here and will be for a fw days yet, but this is my 21st trip. I know the place pretty well.

    I usually stick with the main road in the south and Shark Valley in the north, but have ventured into various areas over the years. Gators are usually not hard for me to find. Big or small.


    American Alligator - Everglades NP - March 14, 2011

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  6. loosewire

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 25, 2008
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    that not a big black hide that 14 footer have seen,how about the rod and gun club
    free to walk thru.resturrant row post some pictures,will tell yoy if i have eaten there
    some offer a bottle of wine. got my sun lite gear on just punching keys.
    you should be out exploring now. will describe a trail later to see if you know about it.
     
  7. BillO

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Nov 24, 2008
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    No, that one was only about 8 feet.

    Tonight and tomorrow I'm doing family stuff (it's gotta be done!).

    Sure, give me a trail head. Maybe I can do some more exploring on Friday. Wednesday is for the north end, Thursday for the Keys. Friday is currently open.


    Here is one that reputedly measured nearly 16 feet according to one of the scientists out at the research centre near Royal Palm. This shot was taken in 2001. That fish in it's mouth was huge. The fish got caught on a shallow shoal and had to swim nearly half way out of the water to get off it. Unfortunatley, this big gator was only 10 feet away and pounced on the fish.

    American Alligator - East end of Ingram Highway - Everglades NP - March 2001
    [​IMG]
     
  8. blueroomelectronics

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jul 22, 2007
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    The photos are great, and yes drivers appear to be getting worse as cars are getting safer.
     
  9. loosewire

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 25, 2008
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    The north end you need a guide ask about the canoe
    guided trail.The way to explain it,you go north and on
    the left hand side.Just south dirty brown water there
    is an turn off about 50 feet from main road a canoe
    entrance.use google earth to spot the pattern of shallow
    lakes with surrounding mangroves.No phones work there,
    file plan with sheriff dept or Fla fish and game. once you go
    Into the first large lake,you look for enter mangrove path
    to next lake you keep repeating looking for next disguiesed
    oppening.First trip I would only do two and keep good land
    marks.Go by the resturant that give free wine or look for
    canoe rentals for guild. It could turn deadly If you go alone.
    No communiction. You have to pull your way thru the mangroves
    will take away your energy,in case of emrgency,maybe plan for next
    trip.Slow in,slow out no shore. The surface is like quick sand,It
    sucks your feet up to your knees,If attacked by alligator you
    could lose family member.You are helpless without air boat or
    helicopter. You can't call for help,phones don't work.People take
    the trip all the time,you need the whole picture.
     
  10. bribri

    Member

    Feb 20, 2011
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    yeah, that would kind of take bad driving to a whole other level.
     
  11. loosewire

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 25, 2008
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    If you are where Billo is on vacation there Is very little law.
    The law can't call for help without the federal government.The Interior
    department for the Indians has a special set up to talk across the
    everglades.Once the Fed's arrested the whole town,there a lot of
    guns there you have to protect your self.You are in the middle of
    the Everglades.Thanks to the helicopter most people survive. This
    canoe trip I suggested the mangroves are so thick an airboat cannot
    make it thru the brush.Go to u-tube-(big alligator) taken at Fla city.
    A big black one.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2011
  12. bribri

    Member

    Feb 20, 2011
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    yeah.
    even more so whilst riding a bike, or walking.

    in my former town of residence, people like to threaten you by revving their engines whilst you cross the street in front of them

    ... "so your trying to communicate with your accelerator that you're going to kill me" ...

    then they get all pis5ed when you thump a fist on their hood. too bad.. rules of engagement buddy. you care so much about your paint job, maybe lay-off using your truck like a weapon.
     
  13. BillO

    Thread Starter Well-Known Member

    Nov 24, 2008
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    I agree on this loosewie. I have gone on canoe trips before, but not this time. I did not bring my waterproof cases, just back packs. I'm only doing shots from the shore this trip. Not making it out to Everglades City either this time around. Last time I drove in there (2006) I did not like the looks I got from the residents. If I were to do the whole waterway from Everglades City to the Keys, I'd definitely hire a reputable guide. It's easy to get lost in there and that trip would take several days. You need to know where you can camp safely too.
     
  14. tom66

    Senior Member

    May 9, 2009
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  15. jpanhalt

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
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    @Tom66

    Nice article. Many of us old folks recognize the loss of what we consider natural fear or common sense in the younger generation. Modern tools have many safety features, and a lot of young users seem to have lost respect for them.

    The effect is seen in other disciplines too. The original Framingham study of interventions for lowering cholesterol found that the death rates in both groups were the same. The group that made life-style and diet changes to lower cholesterol died from more non-cardiovascular events, including suicide.

    John
     
  16. magnet18

    Senior Member

    Dec 22, 2010
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    Thats very interesting, but it makes sense. it almost makes somewhat of a incident equilibrium, if you reduce the probability of an injusy, the amount of dangerous situations increases.

    Something like this can be especially dangerous in something like a high-voltage situation, where carlessness = cardiac arrest.

    As for my generation's apparent lack of common sence, it's exactly like you said; Most things make it impossible for you to hurt yourself, and it comes as a surprise when you realize theres dangerous stuff in there. I was a little shocked when I opened my hood and relized the fan was spinning exposed, not because I thought it should be covered up safley, but because I was surprised they could get away with that without some moron sticking their hand in it and suing.
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2011
  17. loosewire

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    Apr 25, 2008
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    @Tom66,what wikipedia risk have anything to do with
    a vacation. You read all the planning.The risk is not
    having a good time.
     
  18. tom66

    Senior Member

    May 9, 2009
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    The article discusses risk compensation, the theory that new safety features apparently lead to no change or an increase in deaths/injuries, because we take more risks with safer systems.
     
  19. loosewire

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    Apr 25, 2008
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    When you are in the Everglades you are at the mercy of the animals
    you are lower on the food chain than a lot of animals that than can eat you.
    You survive by not making noise.If you splash you canoe paddle,you
    may be an alligator meal.You have to canoe quietly to be safe.
     
  20. tom66

    Senior Member

    May 9, 2009
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    It's not often I find myself in the everglades, but if I do, I'll remember that tip. Thanks!
     
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