Are You One of Those Drivers?
Don’t judge me yet! I know it may not be very nice to start off this blog by referring to other drivers as annoying, but for those of us who drive in South Florida, we all know that they ARE out there. It’s not just one type of annoying driving habit or another either. There are multiple “offenses” that in my mind qualify as annoying, and I am sure that each of us has committed at least one of the actions that I am going to mention. Consequently, you may recognize yourself, a family member, or a friend in one of the following scenarios.
There are those drivers who are on-again, off-again with the gas pedal. Like a bad relationship from Divorce Court, they can’t seem to make up their minds if they want to stay or go. First they speed up then let off the gas, drifting ever more slowly until they are impeding the flow of traffic. Then it’s as if they suddenly have an epiphany like, “Oh, yeah! I am supposed to be driving somewhere,” so they are back on the gas pedal. Sometimes it’s just a matter of being inattentive and at other times it’s more like a fear reaction, as though they abruptly think that they may be breaking the sound barrier or heading for a concrete retaining wall. The most irritating thing about dealing with this type of driver is when they speed up to prevent you from passing, or you pass them so then they get back in front of you and slow down once again. This is especially bothersome when you know from their driving they are in no particular hurry to get to where they are going.
Equally infuriating are those drivers that I refer to as “cuts and waves.” You know the guy. He speeds up to get in front of you, slows way down, and then waves at you like he’s your buddy, and you have just done him a favor. It’s as though he thinks that little wave negates the fact that he has just jeopardized your well-being. This is the kind of guy you fantasize about running off into a ditch, not that I advocate such measures.
What about those drivers who act like they are driving a semi-truck when making a turn? They swing way over into the other lane to make their turn regardless whether or not that other lane happens to be occupied. These are the people that do the same thing when parking and seem to have a difficult time getting their vehicle into a single parking space. I see this frequently with SUVs and trucks. With the volume of people that live and drive in South Florida, parking can be a major issue, so please, if you can’t drive it and/or park it, please don’t buy it!
Then there is the crap-mobile; usually a pickup truck with much more in it than was ever intended by the manufacturer. The stuff in it is held in the bed by an adhesive bandage and a prayer. Often it will be landscaping materials, rocks, tools, or even palm trees being inappropriately hauled from one place to another. Occasionally, a small flag of some type might be attached to the end of whatever may be sticking out, as if that is supposed to somehow make the situation safer. If you can’t see a palm tree hanging out of the bed of a pickup, you probably won’t see the little red flag attached to it. Some drivers have even been impaled by objects flying out of crap-mobiles. I once drove over a ladder that fell out of the back of a truck which damaged my car. It’s when I see things like this that I wish I could not just fight traffic citations, but write them as well.
Probably one of the worst offenders in my mind is the “I’m-the-only-person-on-the-road” driver. Many times, these are tourists or the elderly who either don’t know where they are going or simply haven’t adapted to the high volume of traffic, busy highways, and other changing circumstances that effect how to drive safely in an area a busy as South Florida. With a tremendous amount of both groups of people in this area, this can create substantial issues that drive the rest of us crazy. They seem oblivious to the fact that the left lane is for passing or traffic moving at a higher rate of speed. They poke along, clogging traffic, until at the very last minute they realize that they are about to miss their right-hand exit. Then off they go – across four lanes of traffic in a panicked state, never looking behind them to see what kind of chaos may result from their actions. It’s like they feel as though they may drive off the edge of the Earth because it never seems to occur to them that they can simply go to the next exit to turn around.
Then there is the driver who comes to a dead stop in one lane of traffic because he wants to merge into another. This can be because he is either trying to get into a turn lane or these bothersome cars are between him and his destination. Generally this guy is trying to squeeze himself in the line of traffic that is turning because he is probably simply trying to avoid being near the end of the line of traffic. He is not lost; he’s just being a jerk by not only trying to force his way into a line of stopped cars, but he is impeding the flow of traffic in the lane that he has stopped in. For the few that truly don’t realize that their turn or destination is coming up until too late, the same principle for missing an exit applies to this situation; go to the next exit and turn around.
Of all of the bad drivers that I have seen in South Florida, there is little that bothers me as a much as the on-duty/off-duty cop. I find this particularly annoying. Here is a cop that is obviously not in the jurisdiction in which he works, based upon the markings of his car. The speed limit that everyone is supposed to adhere to is 55 mph, yet he’s doing 95 mph. He has no lights flashing, no siren wailing, so obviously, there is no emergency for him to address. He apparently is just either going home or going to work. This infuriates me especially when I think about the fact that we pay for his gas, his police vehicle, and so on, in part with the money local governments get from us by having them write US speeding tickets. This is an abuse of power that unnecessarily takes the lives of those around him into his own hands.
When you consider the hoards of people on our roadways, the intensity of the South Florida heat, and the stress of everyday living, it’s easy to see how driving here can lead to frustration. I have been a traffic ticket attorney for 20 years and even with all of the knowledge I have gained regarding what can happen in traffic situations, I still get irked by traffic. Over that same 20-year period though, I have learned that no one person is so important as to justifiably risk the lives or property of others, and often a simple moment of inconsideration or inattentiveness can devolve into a road rage incident.
If you have found yourself in one of the situations that I have mentioned and received a citation from it, give me a call. As an experienced traffic ticket attorney, I have successfully represented clients for most of the scenarios that I have discussed here. Just because you drive me crazy, doesn’t mean you are not entitled to a fair defense. Please call me anytime for a free consultation at (954) 967-9888 or visit our website at www.trafficticketteam.com.