Bad Driving

I have become inordinately aware of bad driving in the last 3 years.  I mean startlingly bad driving.  At first I was blaming the era of cell/smart phones.  People looking at a phone drive badly.  But they’ve been around for awhile and I just became aware of this prevalent problem in the last 3 years.

Today I was noting that the driving was often deliberately bad.  Running lights, cutting off people to get in a lane, cutting through corner gas stations in order to avoid the light, random u-turns in high traffic areas.  All of this happened today while I was running errands.

I am currently living and working in lower socioeconomic areas and nearly my entire 20 drive to work is through those areas.  The previous 20 years of my life was spent in upper middle income areas.

So I wondered.  And I looked it up.  Yup.  Lower Socioeconomic areas have higher traffic fatalities and accidents.  Lots of studies on the correlation between them. But no real indication about causes.

And really I wonder what causes it.  Was it bad driving education or a general disregard for personal safety and property, or a general disregard for other people’s safety.

I’m aware that when your life crosses a certain line of terribleness you stop feeling much regard for other people generally.  I know that because I experienced it when I was homeless.  I had to consciously fight it and wasn’t particularly successful.  While its probable that everyone’s line of caring about others is in a different level of terribleness, but terribleness does abound in these areas.

I’m also aware that being depressed makes you a worse driver, you are more ruminative and disassociated from your surroundings.  This makes you less aware.

I wonder also how much of it is just owning a thing that is nice makes you want to keep it nice.  If you own a piece of shit car, there’s no need to drive to protect it.

Lots of potential causes, but I have no idea whether any or all or some variable combination is part of the issue.

But it does feel good to know I’m not imagining this really terrible driving I’ve been seeing.

11 thoughts on “Bad Driving

  1. I agree distraction is part of it, but I believe much of it is due to impatience. Reasonable following distances are not adhered to and I tell my kids that they need to wait at least a second and look before going through a newly changed traffic light. Amber appears to mean speed up.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Oh My! I just realized what I’ve been doing !
    I’m reading you backwards , trying to catch up – as I was off for quite awhile – and I’ve been leaving likes and comments left and right . Sorry 😦
    I am not stalking , just got engrossed reading you , I will take a break now , will “harass” someone else and get back to you in a few days 😉
    Turtle Hugs

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Do NOT worry. I spend most of my time on Tumblr and what you just did to me is a high compliment and much appreciated. So I didn’t think it was odd at all. I’m pleased and happy that you liked it enough to keep reading.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I REALLY hate when people don’t use turn signals! Then signals communicate so much to me and help me plan my actions which results in me being a safer driver.

    Another issue that bothers me is when people refuse to turn on their headlights on dim light or foggy weather — It’s not so much as the light will help them see the road but rather let’s me see their vehicle as visible.

    Turn signals and headlights people — that’s all I really ask for. Oh and I wish people would STOP braking uphill when no one is in front of them! WHY oh why does this happen? 😟

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve noticed this too, but I didn’t notice it until I returned from Japan last year. It seems that most drivers are rude and impatient (as someone else mentioned). If we all just slow down, then I’m sure there’d be fewer horrible driving incidents. Also, I’d never heard of the SES correlation. That’s pretty interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks so much for raising awareness of depression and absent-minded driving. I am quite careful about when I drive and opt out at times and what you said, reinforces my hesitation. I’ve at least finally managed to master setting cruise control so I can at least manage my speed better xx Rowena

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Here in Australia our Driver Education is somewhat hopeless and we see countless things like this day in and out, not just in lower socioeconomic areas!

    I truly believe as a society we can change all this, but driving needs to be taken more seriously when it comes to education and training by implementing it into the school system and having post licence training along with ongoing licence assessments and better regulations.

    Liked by 1 person

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