QOTD: Found Yourself in a Slippery Situation?
Wintery weather gripped many parts of North America over the past week, as the snowman arrived earlier than expected. Seeing all the accompanying gross photos got me thinking about driving in winter, which is of course where we all shine … and everyone else is awful.
Except for when we’re actually awful ourselves. Let’s talk about winter weather driving experiences.
QOTD: Who Are the Biggest Road Buffoons?
Yesterday, Matt brought us a story about one Bhavesh Patel, a man who was found was sitting in the passenger seat of his Tesla Model S while his vehicle traveled down the motorway. He pleaded guilty and was slapped with a driving suspension, community service, and monetary fine.
Far from the only individual on this earth to take leave of their most basic common sense when behind the wheel, we’ve all seen people make questionable decisions on the road. Bonehead driving, applying Dame Edna levels of makeup, sketchy securing of a payload … there’s no shortage of road buffoonery.
Tesla Driver Offers Further Proof People Are Complete Idiots
If you’re wondering how many times this website has complained about people mishandling semi-autonomous driving systems, we’ve completely lost count. However, if you want further evidence that we are justified in constantly wringing our hands over the matter, you’re in luck.
On April 20th, Bhavesh Patel plead guilty to “dangerous driving” at St. Albans Crown Court in the United Kingdom. The term driving is a bit of a misnomer, though. Because Patel was actually sitting in the passenger seat of his Tesla Model S 60, while his vehicle traveled down the motorway driver free. The incident, which took place in May of last year, was caught by a fellow commuter and subsequently reported to authorities. Obviously, we had to find footage of the unbridled stupidity.
Drowsy Driving Might Be a Bigger Problem Than Previously Thought
Back in 2014, an American Automobile Association study estimated that tired motorists were responsible for around 328,000 accidents annually — 6,400 of which were fatal. However, unlike drunk driving, there’s no sound metric for assessing the true scope of the problem. Getting tired is something that just sort of happens. People don’t stay out all night not sleeping because it’s fun, the police can’t test for it, and almost nobody is going to say they were dozing off behind the wheel in an accident report — either because they are too embarrassed or stopped feeling tired at the moment of their brush with death.
That makes the issue a bit of a phantom menace. We all know it’s a problem, but the frequency remains debatable. Fortunately, a new study released by AAA this week helps clear things up. Researchers affixed dashboard cameras to 3,593 vehicles in order to monitor the drivers’ faces, then used a PERCLOS-based fatigue monitoring strategy to come to the conclusion that drowsiness is a contributing factor in 10.6 to 10.8 percent of all accidents resulting in significant property damage, airbag deployment, or injury.
400 Deaths Per Day: Is India Seeking Automotive Safety in the Wrong Places?
Every year, nearly 40,000 people lose their lives on American roadways. Tragic as that may be, it’s small potatoes when you consider India hovers around 150,000 annual fatalities. While you could attribute the difference to the 1.32 billion people living in the country, the truth is that car ownership in India is far less common than in the United States.
Here, there are about 255 million functioning vehicles, leaving the majority of the population with access to some form of four-wheeled transportation. However, in India, the number is closer to 55.7 million — which only gives 42 people out of every 1,000 access to an automobile.
Confronted with a situation that can only be described as catastrophic, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is seeking to impose harsher penalties for traffic violations and requiring automakers to add safety features to cars sold within the region. While that’s a fine start, it doesn’t address the core issue: a nationwide lack of discipline behind the wheel.
Freaky Friday: Bosom Photography Breeds Danger and the Buick Verano is a Drag
Danger, nudity, drugs and the long arm of the law. You’re not safe from any of those things while on the road. There’s Buicks out there, too.
In this edition of Freaky Friday, a young lady discovers that some things are best left to the intimate and discreet confines of one’s own home (or an airport bathroom), a crack aficionado wants everyone to know his favorite pastime, Portland residents are walking caricatures, and a Buick Verano returns excellent fuel economy on a 16-mile journey.
America is the Land of the Free (and the Aggressive, Road-Raging Driver): Study
A study of self-reported aggressive driving behavior finds that your neighbor, brother, wife and child are angry and violent behind the wheel. But not you.
The statistics found in the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety’s report are alarming, and, without stating it explicitly, advocate for more yoga. According to the study, almost 80 percent of U.S. drivers displayed at least one incident of “significant” aggression, anger or road rage during the past year.
Canada: We Have Morons Too
Some of you may be confused as this video seems to depict a warm sunny day, a dearth of moose (mooses? meese?), and the miscreant in question isn’t wreaking havoc with a snowmobile. But trust me, this is Canada, and this is one of our normally polite citizens tearing it up on a blue Yamaha R1 at extra-legal speeds on a crowded highway. He probably drank some bad maple syrup or something.