Driven to this…

DRIVING in any country is hazardous and I personally believe you need to put 100 percent of your concentration into driving or else you yourself are a hazard to other road users. All too often I see aunties driving while busying themselves chatting with their passenger complete with animated hands and head turning. All the while I witness this from behind only to back off to ensure enough room between my car and theirs. The next thing I know another driver squeezes in between us complete without a turn signal (indicator). Thereby, leaving no room for me to safely stop or avoid their vehicle. That’s just one of the many scenarios I encounter everyday on Singapore roads.

I’ve been driving in Singapore for over 10 years and prior to that have 19 years of road experience. When I speak of road experience I’m not talking about just one city or location. I’ve lived and driven vehicles of the two and four wheel variety in Jamaica, Australia, Canada, America and England. In fact, I have tens of thousands kilometers of road experience having driven across the the United States twice, once across Canada and numerous times up and down the eastern USA. I also have experience in left hand and right hand drive vehicles.

Let me get to the point, I’m going to start an experiment of documenting what I’ll term as a #fail (in the event it was a road test) for all the driver encounters I have. I believe that drivers in Singapore simply forget everything they have learned and strived to get correct leading up to their taking of their drivers license road test. Once they pass the road test and get their license they drive without care and reckless abandon. I feel the Singapore Traffic Police (TP) needs to beef up enforcement in order to improve the situation on the road. No amount of education or re-education makes a point without penalties for reinforcement. Fines and demerit points is what is needed. Maybe the TP needs to earn funds from issuing summons to fund their departments instead of just waiting for the government to budget and dole out money.

The situation in my eyes is out of control and the drivers road etiquette abysmal. What does it take to use your finger to activate the turn signal to indicate your intentions to other road users? A simple flick and a shoulder check. Can drivers be that lazy and inconsiderate? Watch my video and find out.

Driving is not any persons right it is a privilege and they should respect that fact. Disrespect it and get caught and you should lose the privelege. The catch here is that there doesn’t seem to be anyone catching the miscreants.

I’m not a psychologist so I don’t know what goes on in the brains of some drivers, especially drivers that depend on driving for their living – most notably taxi drivers and lorry drivers. Why drive recklessly to catch a fare when doing so could result in an accident or if caught performing an illegal U-turn an increase in your demerit points? If these drivers lose their ability to drive they also lose the ability to make a living. So, why risk it?

I think it really comes back to enforcement. There just isn’t enough patrolling or visibility (including media coverage) of offenders being stopped and punished. I cannot recall the last time I saw a motorist stopped for failing to signal or having a rear tail lamp not functioning or even stopping in a yellow box.

Anyway, have a watch of the video. Note this was a single drive event from A to B in the span of 20 minutes. I see this everyday, but I myself uphold my driving standard and etiquette with proper turn signalling, proper stops at stop signs (seems STOP signs are only for decoration here), and many more like no mobile phone use but that is another topic for discussion.

For now, enjoy the video and feel free to agree or disagree with me (especially Singapore drivers).

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