Go back to Drivers Ed

Seriously, the province needs to starts revoking driver’s licence, like today! People who do not know the basics of driving should not be allowed behind the wheel. They are endangering not only themselves but other drivers as well and potentially an innocent bystander too. What I am about to tell you happened within a twenty minute time frame. I had just woken up so I’m a little grouchy.

The drive towards the west end of town wasn’t too bad. It’s about 5:00pm so rush hour is still floating around. Dundurn Street is one of the busiest street during rush hour because it the entrance to Hamilton from Highway 403. I need to get from York and Dundurn to Main and Dundurn in order to get to McMaster hospital. Without any traffic jams, this route would take less than a minute to go from start to finish. But during rush hour, it could take up to ten minutes before you reach Main St.

I usually bypass the traffic jams by making a left and taking Strathcona Avenue. Taking this route would make it seem like there isn’t any rush hour traffic at all. There are a lot of short cuts if you take the smaller city streets but no one is willing to take the time to look for them since they prefer to wait in the traffic jam.

I get to McMaster within fifteen minutes just like any other day. This part of the city has been reconstructed with new roads and new sidewalks. I don’t know who drew up the designed but the people who approved it should have used more common sense to rethink the design.

Before going to the hospital you make a right at the lights. This part of the intersection has a yield sign to let oncoming traffic go first. It is also used as a pedestrian walk way. Sometimes the pedestrians would just walk as if the yield sign was a stop sign. I don’t quite remember my traffic sign rules entirely but doesn’t the yield sign mean to yield traffic and not pedestrians? If you’re nice enough, you can let the pedestrians go first. But if they were to walk out in front of you without stopping, maybe they deserve to be run over.

Up ahead is a weird intersection. The road that I’m on has the right of way because there are no stop signs. Whether I decide to go straight or make a left, I get to do it first before the other cars. They have to wait patiently at the stop sign before they can proceed.

There’s a van in front of me who wants to make a left hand turn. The driver turns on their signal and starts to slow down to a stop. There is no stop sign for them so they didn’t have to stop but it’s good that they’re being safe. They did everything according to the driver’s manual except for the fact that they’re in the right lane! If you want to make a left hand turn, you switch over to the left lane. Stopping in the middle of the road on the right hand to make a left hand turn is just stupid. This is rush hour and we don’t need traffic to be any slower than it is.

This driver finally turns left and I proceed to the next intersection. Again, I have the right of way to make a left hand turn but I don’t trust any other driver on the road so I slow down before making my turn. The car at the stop proceeds to drive forward and enter the intersection. I had to slam on the brakes so I wouldn’t hit them. The road that I’m driving on has the right of way because it’s the road that leads to the hospital entrance. To make it easier for the ambulance to get in there first, they took out the stop sign for this street and placed it on the others. Obviously, not all drivers understand the word stop in big bold white letters. If they did, they wouldn’t have driven into the intersection while the other car had the right of way.

Before I get to the area where I have to drop off my brother, I drive by the parking lot entrance. I can see a pick up truck up ahead and he doesn’t seem to be moving anywhere. It looked like he wanted to go into the parking lot but he’s about a car length away from the entrance and doesn’t appear to be turning into it. I have enough room to squeeze by if I wanted to. This guy doesn’t realize that he’s blocking the path to get to the emergency entrance. If an ambulance needed to get by, they would have to wait for him to move. In a life and death situation where every seconds counts, this driver would have killed someone by blocking the road.

I didn’t want to have to wait for him to make up his mind about whether he should park or not so I squeezed between him and the concrete block. I had enough room so that there was at least an inch on either side of my car. It was a tight squeeze but I didn’t have time to wait around all day.

I dropped off my brother and turned around to head back home. The pick up truck that I passed earlier finally decided to turn into the parking lot. If I waited for the driver to finally make up his mind, I would have been waiting for a while. How long does it take to decide whether or not to park your car?

As I get to the weird intersection again, I stop at the stop sign. To the right, traffic has backed up. If any more cars join that line, those cars would be blocking the intersection. The common sense thing to do is for the rest of the cars to stay behind the stop sign and allow other cars to drive through the intersection. Of course, most drivers lack the common sense gene and proceed to join the line which in turn blocks the intersection. This van is not blocking the path that goes into the hospital but it is blocking me and the bus beside me from going anywhere. The bus isn’t going to go anywhere since it has to turn right to join the line. I, on the other hand, need to turn left but I can’t because the van is blocking me.

I think one way to reduce the amount of traffic is courtesy. If all the drivers were kind enough to let other drivers merge onto the highway, there would be less traffic jams. I rarely get stuck in traffic because of my work hours. I’m usually driving in the opposite direction. I’ve noticed that traffic jams occurs in the section of the highway where there are merging cars. After the merge, traffic jams are non-existent. I’ve driven down highways and saw nothing be open roads only to find congestion later on. Sure enough, it’s in the area where other drivers are merging. This may not be a solution but it might help reduce traffic jams a lot.