Our Island roads are cluttered with what we consider “selfish” and “aggravating” PEI drivers. Or, are some actually bad at driving? Could it be the habits we have picked up along the way? This question is common when it all boils down to the brains behind the wheel.
We Islanders believe our driving is perfect and it is those around us that are not the brightest crayon in the box, especially when the summer months roll around and we start seeing those foreign license plates. These individuals are downgrading from 5 lane highways to our “Maximum 70” roads, so when they visit our sweet, gentle, yet stressful, angry Island they like to take it down a notch and relax, enjoy the slow speeds. They don’t want to be bothered by tailgaters, also known as Islander’s eh!
It could be due to our selfishness and lack of common sense that we will curse at you, flip you off or ride your rear bumper until you speed up; because that’s the way we Islanders think is the proper way to drive. Whether it is a rugged rusty pick-up truck or a flashy new Convertible, our Island drivers will do anything in their power to grind your gears. For example, those ever so “polite” people who like to suddenly stop in flowing traffic to give the wrong person the right of way.
Weren’t we all taught the rules of the road? Keep a certain distance between yourself and other vehicles, don’t exceed the given speed limit, and don’t rush for that stale green light. It’s all the common sense that flies out the window that first week you receive your license. Charlottetown Police handed out more traffic violation tickets in 2011 than they did in 2010. At the end of November 2011, 832 speeding tickets were written whereas in 2010 there were 752. That’s 80 more mindless drivers disobeying the law than the year before.
Although, we’ve all rolled the odd stop sign, ran that fresh yellow light, and “accidently” cut someone off, no one is perfect. It’s easy to go those extra 10 kilometres over the speed limit while staring down any vehicle we think looks like Charlottetown Police. But in all honesty, we should obey the rules of the road because they’re there to keep us safe aren’t they? Picture this, going 80 kilometers down University Avenue weaving through traffic to make the 11 o’clock cut off at McDonalds for breakfast, and someone in front of you decides 50 kilometers is a good pace. Sounds like a break screeching accident to me. Did you know that traffic crashes are the leading cause of death among Canada’s youth? That is one phone call no parent wants to receive.
However, as a solution, maybe the government should instruct a mandatory road test as you get older. Consider this, when you go for an eye test, and your results come back worse than before, that should be an alert to the government that you need to retake a road or sign test to be sure you are able to drive on what PEI roads have become today.