Tuesday, 14 August 2007

Irish Drivers

In a country where you can drive to the testing centre on a provisional licence, fail, and drive off into the traffic again, it's not surprising that the standard of roadcraft often leaves a lot to be desired. Steve Lane (!), of Dunboyne sums it up well in today's Metro, with his Commandments for Motoring Muppets:

1. Thou shalt have a reg plate in italics.
2. Thou shalt display a "Baby on Board" sticker.
3. When learning to drive, thou shalt display an L-plate in an inverted position.
4. Thou shalt obscure the rear view with cuddly toys on the parcel shelf.
5. Thou shalt remain in the overtaking lane of the motorway on the basis that "I'm traveling at the speed limit, so no one should be overtaking me".
6. Thou shalt inexplicably indicate 'right' at a roundabout when you are going to go straight through.
7. Thou shalt slow to 50 kph at the bottom of the on-ramp before attempting to merge with motorway traffic.
8. Thou shalt accelerate through the amber light at busy pedestrian crossings.
9. Though shalt fail to acknowledge drivers who make space to let you out from side roads.
10. Thou shalt drive in semi-darkness without headlights 'to save fuel'.

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Anonymous said...

What about drivers that approach roundabouts in the left lane only to head right? I've driven in countries all over the world and i've only ever seen that, on a regular basis, in Ireland

Gombeen Man said...

Very true, Anon. And I'm sure we've more roundabouts that anyone else in Europe - so you think they'd be used to them by now!
Gombeen Man

P.James said...

As a driving instructor I enjoyed this piece alot... And there's a lot of truth to it! People's wild behaviour on roundabouts has to be my personal favorite!!!

The Gombeen Man said...

Hiya P.James. Welcome to the blog.

I think one of the problems is that all our TV ads seem to focus on apocalyptic horror scenarios with children being crushed by somersaulting cars in their back gardens (followed by a guy with bad mascara emerging from the wreck, thinking "what have I done?").

Maybe if the authorities concentrated on educating people on how to use the roads properly (lane disipline, negotiating roundabouts, finding out what the stalks on the side of the steering wheel do - stuff like that) it might be more beneficial?

Might make your job a bit less scary too!!!!

Keep up the good work. Ireland needs people like you!

marine101 said...

Great blog.Humouress,but none the less a serious fu***** problem.The way alot of people negotiate roundabouts is baffling.Driving in the wrong lane then switching at the last possible second to take a turn off while cutting off another driver..a common feature that i have encountered many a time.For all the ads we have seen throughout the years i have rarely heard of death by drink-driving.If its not speeding its usually down to bad habits.People switching lanes as they yap away or text on their jaysus phone.I agree with the ads against drink driving but surely the odd add to discourage these bad habits would help...then again i wholeheartedly believe we are a nation of poor drivers,thanks to the incompetence of the transport minister.

The Gombeen Man said...

That's it M. You're taking your life in your hands going out on the road here! My personal pet hate is those idiots who INSIST on sitting in the overtaking lane on motorways when the left lane is free. The odd time I take the Gombeenmobile over to Europe, and my blood pressure levels drop considerably. Bliss!