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Why don't American drivers drive like Europeans?



 
 
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  #1  
Old March 16th 07, 08:54 PM posted to rec.motorcycles,alt.law-enforcement.traffic,rec.autos.driving,misc.transport.road,alt.autos
donquijote1954
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Posts: 753
Default Why don't American drivers drive like Europeans?

On Mar 16, 10:40 am, wrote:
> On Mar 15, 12:36 pm, "donquijote1954"
>
> > I got SUVphobia. It's basically the fear that an SUV can kill you. If
> > they are 16 times more likely to kill you in a car, imagine on a bike
> > --and the driver on the cell!

>
> That contradicts your theory as bicycles being a superior alternate
> form of transportation. With that kind of death rate, it's obviously
> much too risky.
>


No, it only proves the inferior and primitive law that prevails on our
roads: THE LAW OF THE JUNGLE. If we had THE RULE OF LAW (rules of the
road), then bicycles would be superior, morally at least. But the same
thing applies to every other smaller vehicle out there.

And this is a comment to the article below...

"Why don't American drivers drive like that? Because we are a
snobbish, boorish, rude society that feels that it has the right to do
whatever it wants. If we drove like the Europeans did, this country
would be a better place to live in and there would be less road rage,
anger, fighting and all the other things that our country is known
for, such as fighting unnecessary wars (Iraq) and other things like
that."

Lane discipline... or a lack thereof

This may sound like I'm whining. I'm not (I hate that sound from
anyone). But I am complaining. Because, as drivers -- enthusiast or
otherwise -- we have a problem in this country.

I was rolling down the road the other day with sports car racing ace,
2005 Grand Am champion, and Rolex 24 winner Max Angelelli in the
passenger seat. Sure it would have probably been more fun the other
way around, but no matter. He asked, "Why don't drivers mind their
lane here in America? Why do the slow cars hog the left lane? It
seems to me that this complicates the traffic. And why does everyone
get so angry when you flash your lights at them?" Max maintains homes
in Monaco, Italy, and Florida. So, besides his obvious driving
credentials, he has experience on roads all over the world.

It seemed a simple question, but one I couldn't answer. In Europe,
particularly Italy and Germany, there are rules of the road that cover
this. Trucks and slow cars to the right -- always. What we would
call the number two lane, in most instances, is for cars only, moving
along at the speed limit or above. The number one lane, the one we
call the fast lane, but seldom is here -- really is over there,
reserved for those who are passing or really hauling butt. And
everybody drives by these dictums. All the time.

more...

http://blogs.motortrend.com/6200177/...eof/index.html

WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE
http://webspawner.com/users/donquijote

BANANA REVOLUTION (T-shirts to change the world)

http://webspawner.com/users/bananarevolution

Ads
  #2  
Old March 16th 07, 09:25 PM posted to rec.autos.driving
necromancer
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2,006
Default Why don't American drivers drive like Europeans?

Ladies and Gentlemen (and I use those words loosely), donquijote1954
said in rec.autos.driving:

<< ECP removed >>

> And this is a comment to the article below...
>
> "Why don't American drivers drive like that? Because we are a
> snobbish, boorish, rude society that feels that it has the right to do
> whatever it wants. If we drove like the Europeans did, this country
> would be a better place to live in and there would be less road rage,
> anger, fighting and all the other things that our country is known
> for, such as fighting unnecessary wars (Iraq) and other things like
> that."
>
> Lane discipline... or a lack thereof


<< snip remainder >>

I have to admit, that I agree with you on this one, donkey hotay. As for
the question, "Why don't American drivers drive like that? " The answer
can be found in the .sig below courtesy of that great American
Philosopher George Carlin....

--
"This country is full of nitwits and assholes."
--George Carlin
  #3  
Old March 16th 07, 11:34 PM posted to rec.autos.driving
Nate Nagel[_2_]
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Posts: 4,686
Default Why don't American drivers drive like Europeans?

necromancer wrote:
> Ladies and Gentlemen (and I use those words loosely), donquijote1954
> said in rec.autos.driving:
>
> << ECP removed >>
>
>>And this is a comment to the article below...
>>
>>"Why don't American drivers drive like that? Because we are a
>>snobbish, boorish, rude society that feels that it has the right to do
>>whatever it wants. If we drove like the Europeans did, this country
>>would be a better place to live in and there would be less road rage,
>>anger, fighting and all the other things that our country is known
>>for, such as fighting unnecessary wars (Iraq) and other things like
>>that."
>>
>>Lane discipline... or a lack thereof

>
>
> << snip remainder >>
>
> I have to admit, that I agree with you on this one, donkey hotay. As for
> the question, "Why don't American drivers drive like that? " The answer
> can be found in the .sig below courtesy of that great American
> Philosopher George Carlin....
>
> --
> "This country is full of nitwits and assholes."
> --George Carlin


(.sig restored for context)

That, and the police seem to be unwilling to do anything about all but
the most egregious offenses. If we imported some German traffic cops, I
bet things would be a hell of a lot better. Perhaps we can work out
some sort of rotating training agreement with the Polizei so we can have
some traffic cops that actually understand that safety doesn't have to
be slow and so that they can see how wonderful things can be when people
play by the rules.

nate

--
replace "roosters" with "cox" to reply.
http://members.cox.net/njnagel
  #4  
Old March 17th 07, 02:29 AM posted to rec.autos.driving
necromancer
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2,006
Default Why don't American drivers drive like Europeans?

Ladies and Gentlemen (and I use those words loosely), Nate Nagel said in
rec.autos.driving:
> necromancer wrote:



> >
> > I have to admit, that I agree with you on this one, donkey hotay. As for
> > the question, "Why don't American drivers drive like that? " The answer
> > can be found in the .sig below courtesy of that great American
> > Philosopher George Carlin....
> >
> > --
> > "This country is full of nitwits and assholes."
> > --George Carlin

>
> (.sig restored for context)
>
> That, and the police seem to be unwilling to do anything about all but
> the most egregious offenses. If we imported some German traffic cops, I
> bet things would be a hell of a lot better. Perhaps we can work out
> some sort of rotating training agreement with the Polizei so we can have
> some traffic cops that actually understand that safety doesn't have to
> be slow and so that they can see how wonderful things can be when people
> play by the rules.


That's exactly right: the nitwits are behind the wheel (case in point:
Aunt Judy) and the assholes are the ones in charge (police and
politicians).

The only danger point I see with your plan is the probability that the
learning process is a two way street: that even as our cops bring back
their experiences in Germany, the German cops will pick up on some of
the bad that our cops practice....

--
"Breathe in. Breathe out. Move on."
--Jimmy Buffett
  #5  
Old March 17th 07, 03:17 AM posted to rec.motorcycles,alt.law-enforcement.traffic,rec.autos.driving,misc.transport.road,alt.autos
zorba
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1
Default Why don't American drivers drive like Europeans?

On Mar 16, 3:54�pm, "donquijote1954" >
wrote:
> On Mar 16, 10:40 am, wrote:
>
> > On Mar 15, 12:36 pm, "donquijote1954"

>
> > > I got SUVphobia. It's basically the fear that an SUV can kill you. If
> > > they are 16 times more likely to kill you in a car, imagine on a bike
> > > --and the driver on the cell!

>
> > That contradicts your theory as bicycles being a superior alternate
> > form of transportation. With that kind of death rate, it's obviously
> > much too risky.

>
> No, it only proves the inferior and primitive law that prevails on our
> roads: THE LAW OF THE JUNGLE. If we had THE RULE OF LAW (rules of the
> road), then bicycles would be superior, morally at least. But the same
> thing applies to every other smaller vehicle out there.
>
> And this is a comment to the article below...
>
> "Why don't American drivers drive like that? Because we are a
> snobbish, boorish, rude society that feels that it has the right to do
> whatever it wants. If we drove like the Europeans did, this country
> would be a better place to live in and there would be less road rage,
> anger, fighting and all the other things that our country is known
> for, such as fighting unnecessary wars (Iraq) and other things like
> that."
>
> Lane discipline... or a lack thereof
>
> This may sound like I'm whining. *I'm not (I hate that sound from
> anyone). *But I am complaining. *Because, as drivers -- enthusiast or
> otherwise -- we have a problem in this country.
>
> I was rolling down the road the other day with sports car racing ace,
> 2005 Grand Am champion, and Rolex 24 winner Max Angelelli in the
> passenger seat. *Sure it would have probably been more fun the other
> way around, but no matter. *He asked, "Why don't drivers mind their
> lane here in America? *Why do the slow cars hog the left lane? *It
> seems to me that this complicates the traffic. *And why does everyone
> get so angry when you flash your lights at them?" *Max maintains homes
> in Monaco, Italy, and Florida. *So, besides his obvious driving
> credentials, he has experience on roads all over the world.
>
> It seemed a simple question, but one I couldn't answer. *In Europe,
> particularly Italy and Germany, there are rules of the road that cover
> this. *Trucks and slow cars to the right -- always. *What we would
> call the number two lane, in most instances, is for cars only, moving
> along at the speed limit or above. *The number one lane, the one we
> call the fast lane, but seldom is here -- really is over there,
> reserved for those who are passing or really hauling butt. *And
> everybody drives by these dictums. *All the time.
>
> more...
>
> http://blogs.motortrend.com/6200177/...ipline-or-a-la...
>
> WELCOME TO THE JUNGLEhttp://webspawner.com/users/donquijote
>
> BANANA REVOLUTION (T-shirts to change the world)
>
> http://webspawner.com/users/bananarevolution


You're kidding, right? Ever drive in Italy?

  #6  
Old March 17th 07, 03:30 AM posted to alt.law-enforcement.traffic,rec.autos.driving,misc.transport.road,alt.autos
Gus[_4_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 5
Default Why don't American drivers drive like Europeans?

donquijote1954 wrote:
>snip

It's so obvious to anyone that has been to Europe that these people and
you have never been there and certainly not driven over there.
  #7  
Old March 17th 07, 04:50 AM posted to rec.motorcycles,alt.law-enforcement.traffic,rec.autos.driving,misc.transport.road,alt.autos
[email protected]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 7
Default Why don't American drivers drive like Europeans?

On Mar 16, 10:17 pm, "zorba" > wrote:
>
> You're kidding, right? Ever drive in Italy?


I have. Have you? Italian drivers are MUCH better than American
drivers. On the highway they have lane discipline - they drive right
and pass left, and move out of the way very quickly for faster
traffic. In city traffic they have much better situational awareness
than Americans do. There is no comparison. In heavy traffic things can
sometimes look hairy (especially to Americans who don't pay attention
to anything other than what's right in front of them), but everybody
pays attention to what's happening around them and cars merge and
cross paths without problems.

And the biggest difference is that Italian (and other non-US) drivers
aren't assholes. Yes, they drive aggressively. But they don't have a
stupid, pointlessly mean attitude like Americans do. An Italian driver
will get in your way if it helps him, but will get out of your way if
he can. An American driver will get in your way just because he's an
asshole and wants to make you slower, even if it doesn't help him.

American drivers are among the worst in the world. You don't believe
it? Watch this video of an intersection in India:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RjrEQaG5jPM
No traffic lights, mixture of pedestrians, bicycles, mopeds,
motorcycles, cars, trucks, buses, etc. But everyone pays attention to
what's going on around them, traffic flows, and there are no
accidents. In a similar situation in the US, there would be an
accident every 10 seconds and somebody would die.

-Gniewko

  #8  
Old March 17th 07, 04:55 AM posted to rec.motorcycles,alt.law-enforcement.traffic,rec.autos.driving,misc.transport.road,alt.autos
brink
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 185
Default Why don't American drivers drive like Europeans?


> wrote in message
oups.com...
> On Mar 16, 10:17 pm, "zorba" > wrote:
>>
>> You're kidding, right? Ever drive in Italy?

>
> I have. Have you? Italian drivers are MUCH better than American
> drivers. On the highway they have lane discipline - they drive right
> and pass left, and move out of the way very quickly for faster
> traffic.


Depends on which part of Italy. The north is pretty orderly, but get down
south... say around Naples... and it's often utter chaos on the roads.
I've never seen anything quite like it as I've not spent much time on
third-world roads... motorists will literally cruise down the freeway
splitting two lanes, as if it's perfectly ordinary... shoulder passing...
complete disregard of stoplights... I'm sure it's just a cultural thing,
that lanes and signals are merely "suggestions" rather than mandates.

brink


  #9  
Old March 17th 07, 05:07 AM posted to rec.motorcycles,alt.law-enforcement.traffic,rec.autos.driving,misc.transport.road,alt.autos
[email protected]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 456
Default Why don't American drivers drive like Europeans?

On Mar 16, 8:50 pm, wrote:
> On Mar 16, 10:17 pm, "zorba" > wrote:
>
>
>
> > You're kidding, right? Ever drive in Italy?

>
> I have. Have you? Italian drivers are MUCH better than American
> drivers. On the highway they have lane discipline - they drive right
> and pass left, and move out of the way very quickly for faster
> traffic. In city traffic they have much better situational awareness
> than Americans do. There is no comparison. In heavy traffic things can
> sometimes look hairy (especially to Americans who don't pay attention
> to anything other than what's right in front of them), but everybody
> pays attention to what's happening around them and cars merge and
> cross paths without problems.
>
> And the biggest difference is that Italian (and other non-US) drivers
> aren't assholes. Yes, they drive aggressively. But they don't have a
> stupid, pointlessly mean attitude like Americans do. An Italian driver
> will get in your way if it helps him, but will get out of your way if
> he can. An American driver will get in your way just because he's an
> asshole and wants to make you slower, even if it doesn't help him.
>
> American drivers are among the worst in the world. You don't believe
> it? Watch this video of an intersection in India:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RjrEQaG5jPM
> No traffic lights, mixture of pedestrians, bicycles, mopeds,
> motorcycles, cars, trucks, buses, etc. But everyone pays attention to
> what's going on around them, traffic flows, and there are no
> accidents. In a similar situation in the US, there would be an
> accident every 10 seconds and somebody would die.
>
> -Gniewko


If that intersection were in the states, it would be full of wrecks
caused by folks who want to go through at about 50 mph.
The traffic in the video is much slower than green light traffic in
the states. It looks more like walking in a shopping mall, except
most people are on wheels.

Both systems work, if everyone plays by the local rules. It likely
doesn't matter which set of rules you use, just make sure everyone
uses the same rules in any particular location.

In the original post:
" What we would call the number two lane, in most instances, is for
cars only, moving along at the speed limit or above. "
I don't know what "speed limit" means there, but here it means that
this is as fast as you can legally go. Except that it is spottily
enforced because Americans typically have little regard for rules--
social, road, or whatever.

When I was in Italy a while ago, for only a week, I was amazed at the
traffic. It was mayhem. But it was GENTLE mayhem. As someone above
observed, it wasn't road rage; it was just whatever worked. And there
wasn't some batch of speediots going way over the limit, or way over
everyone else. I didn't see anyone videotaping themselves going two
or three times the posted limit or existing traffic. They just sort
of drove and parked wherever they needed to to make things work.
Kinda cute, actually.

  #10  
Old March 17th 07, 03:31 PM posted to rec.motorcycles,alt.law-enforcement.traffic,rec.autos.driving,misc.transport.road,alt.autos
Gerard H. Pille
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1
Default Why don't American drivers drive like Europeans?

donquijote1954 wrote:
> On Mar 16, 10:40 am, wrote:
>
>>On Mar 15, 12:36 pm, "donquijote1954"
>>
>>
>>>I got SUVphobia. It's basically the fear that an SUV can kill you. If
>>>they are 16 times more likely to kill you in a car, imagine on a bike
>>>--and the driver on the cell!

>>
>>That contradicts your theory as bicycles being a superior alternate
>>form of transportation. With that kind of death rate, it's obviously
>>much too risky.
>>

>
>
> No, it only proves the inferior and primitive law that prevails on our
> roads: THE LAW OF THE JUNGLE. If we had THE RULE OF LAW (rules of the
> road), then bicycles would be superior, morally at least. But the same
> thing applies to every other smaller vehicle out there.
>
> And this is a comment to the article below...
>
> "Why don't American drivers drive like that? Because we are a
> snobbish, boorish, rude society that feels that it has the right to do
> whatever it wants. If we drove like the Europeans did, this country
> would be a better place to live in and there would be less road rage,
> anger, fighting and all the other things that our country is known
> for, such as fighting unnecessary wars (Iraq) and other things like
> that."
>
> Lane discipline... or a lack thereof
>
> This may sound like I'm whining. I'm not (I hate that sound from
> anyone). But I am complaining. Because, as drivers -- enthusiast or
> otherwise -- we have a problem in this country.
>
> I was rolling down the road the other day with sports car racing ace,
> 2005 Grand Am champion, and Rolex 24 winner Max Angelelli in the
> passenger seat. Sure it would have probably been more fun the other
> way around, but no matter. He asked, "Why don't drivers mind their
> lane here in America? Why do the slow cars hog the left lane? It
> seems to me that this complicates the traffic. And why does everyone
> get so angry when you flash your lights at them?" Max maintains homes
> in Monaco, Italy, and Florida. So, besides his obvious driving
> credentials, he has experience on roads all over the world.
>
> It seemed a simple question, but one I couldn't answer. In Europe,
> particularly Italy and Germany, there are rules of the road that cover
> this. Trucks and slow cars to the right -- always. What we would
> call the number two lane, in most instances, is for cars only, moving
> along at the speed limit or above. The number one lane, the one we
> call the fast lane, but seldom is here -- really is over there,
> reserved for those who are passing or really hauling butt. And
> everybody drives by these dictums. All the time.
>
> more...
>
> http://blogs.motortrend.com/6200177/...eof/index.html
>
> WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE
> http://webspawner.com/users/donquijote
>
> BANANA REVOLUTION (T-shirts to change the world)
>
> http://webspawner.com/users/bananarevolution
>


I find it hard to believe americans would behave any different from us europeans. On both sides
you have people obeying and people disregarding traffic regulations. The only thing that keeps
the latter in check is the traffic police, of which there aren't enough.

Gerard
 




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