QOTD: How's Your City Driving?

Tim Healey
by Tim Healey

Two days ago we wrote about a study that tried to ascertain which cities had the best -- and worst -- drivers.

We also, of course, called out all the caveats involved.

The natural question is, how are the drivers where you live?

In my city, Chicago, it's a mixed bag. I see people driving too slow or too fast every day, people taking too long to make a right turn, people cutting others off...pretty much every aspect of bad driving.

Yet I've been in scarier places. Nashville and suburban Baltimore seem to feature the worst drivers I've seen, and L.A. is rough, too. NYC drivers are aggressive and selfish, though not necessarily bad.

On the other hand, I've seen good behavior in rural Michigan and rural central Tennessee.

Go ahead and sound off below.

[Image: David Tadevosian/Shutterstock.com]

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Tim Healey
Tim Healey

Tim Healey grew up around the auto-parts business and has always had a love for cars — his parents joke his first word was “‘Vette”. Despite this, he wanted to pursue a career in sports writing but he ended up falling semi-accidentally into the automotive-journalism industry, first at Consumer Guide Automotive and later at Web2Carz.com. He also worked as an industry analyst at Mintel Group and freelanced for About.com, CarFax, Vehix.com, High Gear Media, Torque News, FutureCar.com, Cars.com, among others, and of course Vertical Scope sites such as AutoGuide.com, Off-Road.com, and HybridCars.com. He’s an urbanite and as such, doesn’t need a daily driver, but if he had one, it would be compact, sporty, and have a manual transmission.

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6 of 22 comments
  • Analoggrotto Analoggrotto on Sep 22, 2023

    I refuse to comment until Tassos comments.

    • Lou_BC Lou_BC on Sep 22, 2023

      Juse fake post a "Used Car of the Day" story.

  • Theflyersfan Theflyersfan on Sep 22, 2023

    As crazy as the NE/Mid-Atlantic I-95 corridor drivers can be, for the most part they pay attention and there aren't too many stupid games. I think at times it's just too crowded for that stuff.

    I've lived all over the US and the worst drivers are in parts of the Midwest. As I've mentioned before, Ohio drivers have ZERO lane discipline when it comes to cruising, merging, and exiting. And I've just seen it in this area (Louisville) where many drivers have literally no idea how to merge. I've never seen an area where drivers have no problems merging onto an interstate at 30 mph right in front of you. There are some gruesome wrecks at these merge points because it looks like drivers are just too timid to merge and speed up correctly. And the weaving and merging at cloverleaf exits (which in this day and age need to all go away) borders on comical in that no one has a bloody clue of let car merge in, you merge right to exit, and then someone repeats behind you. That way traffic moves. Not a chance here.

    And for all of the ragging LA drivers get, I found them just fine. It's actually kind of funny watching them rearrange themselves like after a NASCAR caution flag once traffic eases up and they line up, speed up to 80 mph for a few miles, only to come to a dead halt again. I think they are just so used to the mess of freeways and drivers that it's kind of a "we'll get there when we get there..." kind of attitude.

  • Danddd Danddd on Sep 22, 2023

    Chicago at night is crazy traveling in and out from the 'burbs. Taking the Ike back home around midnight and you'll see racers swerving by at 100mph plus. Dangerous enough we rarely go down there anymore. I plan my city trips between 9:30AM and back out by 1PM to miss the worst traffic.

    • Sgeffe Sgeffe on Sep 23, 2023

      I had an experience like that on the inbound Eisenhower at 8:30 on a September Sunday evening whilst driving from Minneapolis to Toledo several years back. Three crotch rockets blasted by on the right and left, each about 30 seconds apart, and each doing a buck-thirty easily, followed by an MkVI GTI which blasted by on the right at about 110! Absolutely insane! One wrong move, or errant stone in the road, and the biker's life is down to the time it takes for him to cannonball through the window of another vehicle (probably decapitating any humans who happen to be in the way), or into the side of a bridge abutment, or maybe even into one of the cheese-grater drain-toppers I happened to note, the latter two of which would probably leave just a little more left than what was left of one of the people on that sub implosion!

      As for Northwest Ohio, as I've opined many times, and as was noted in this thread elsewhere, extra points are awarded for merging into 65mph traffic at 50mph or less, and especially lollygagging in the left lane of the freeway at some arbitrary numbers pulled out of a random politician's backside, with 3x bonus points for each increment of an eighth of a mile behind aforesaid morality police in which they can back up traffic!

      Then there are the ones that make even the drivers above look like saints. Yesterday, I was in the new, extended approach to I-75 south ramp from downtown Toledo, and as I'm proceeding along, I noted a purplish Honda Pilot ahead in the center lane which continues along the other artery out of downtown. This idiot gently moved into my lane without a signal or anything, and I had to brake hard, then follow this dolt onto the onramp doing 42mph! (In hindsight, I should have gunned it around them, including a horn blast and a "you're # 1" salute--I had more than enough time and distance to do so! That new ramp is part of the reconstruction and reconfiguration of I-75 through downtown Toledo and into it's closest southern suburbs, which has been an almost five-year nightmare as of the middle of next month! This ramp has maybe a 1/2-mile approach, then two left curves into the actual ramp; I can take those curves around 65-ish, or maybe 55 at the worst in the wet. Most people slow to about 45mph, and following the Northwest Ohio merging script, don't accelerate much past that point as they enter the mainline freeway, which will be moving at 65mph or more..or I hope, anyway..when the construction project is FINALLY done hopefully next month, when the project itself will be old enough to start kindergarten!)

      But it wasn't over yet! Thanks to this moron, I had to come almost to his dead stop to let several cars go past, then I got into the left lane of I-75 behind slower traffic while the Pilot driver got a good quarter-mile ahead in the right lane! Finally the left lane started to move, and as I approached that Pilot, the driver, again, slowly slid over, no signal or anything! I didn't have to grenade brakes, but I checked to the right and things were clear, so I blasted my way around the Pilot, who was doing their level-headed best to enforce the speed limit in the left lane! Infuriating!

  • Arthur Dailey Arthur Dailey on Sep 22, 2023

    When we move out of the city (Greater Toronto Area) the predominant reason will be getting away from the traffic. A few weeks ago, my nephew was rear ended. When he got out of his car and walked back to the SUV that hit him, the SUV driver waited and then drove off. My nephew was not 'quick enough' to get the license plate, but called the police who explained that they get about two dozen such incidents every day.

    Toronto used to be called 'New York City run by the Swiss'. It is now closer to the NYC of the 1970's-80's in regards to traffic laws.