Drivers in BC, Canada Suck!
In the four years of being here I’ve noticed there are a lot of bad drivers on the roads of British Columbia. I’m not talking about an odd incident here and there, we’re talking about incidents almost every day … and I don’t even consider myself to be a frequent driver.
Two such incidents occurred on a trip today and are fairly typical of what happens; one involving an impatient driver honking at me for not turning left at a light until it went amber and then just a few blocks later somebody failing to stop at a Stop sign.
The first incident occurred when I was trying to turn left at a light. There’s normally very limited oncoming traffic at this intersection but today, for some unknown reason, there were 5 or 6 cars all coming down the hill or turning. Therefore, as a somewhat safe driver of a pickup truck I know it takes time for me to accelerate and turn my 6,000 lbs of metal up a hill, turn left and clear my 17 feet from the path of the oncoming vehicles. Naturally, I assume those coming down a hill are less likely to stop so I tend to wait for an appropriate gap. It never came. I could have assumed somebody turning would have stayed on the inside lane, or that they really were turning but until I see a car slowing down I don’t trust their indicator. Call it paranoia if you like.
So it wasn’t until the light turned to amber that the gap appeared, so I turned and so did my honking shadow. She then passed me in her beaten up car and her male passenger indicated his IQ by way of his extended finger. I then accelerated and pulled alongside shouting “What the hell was I supposed to do? Turn into oncoming traffic?”. His rather eloquent response aligned with his previous estimation of his IQ and comprised of the unoriginal two word comeback used by white trash across Canada.
Ten blocks later I drive up another hill, slow down at a 4-Way Stop, waiting to turn left, and spot the minivan out of the corner of my eye as White Trash Surfboarding Dude in a Beaten Up Minivan hurtles through the junction ahead of me. And then people wonder why I take an extra half-second at junctions.
Sometimes I think I’m the only person in BC that actually considers there may be a motorcyclist that I missed when I scanned the junction, or that there’s an approaching emergency vehicle. UK readers would be amazed how many times people simply floor the pedal when the light goes green without ever considering there may be a slow-moving pedestrian still on the crosswalk, or another car making a late turn due to traffic build-up, or there’s an emergency vehicle about to appear.
I’d love to see all 4-Way Stop signs removed as there is a significant minority of drivers that fail to use them properly and I dread the day I hit somebody and it’s my word against theirs. I must see 50 people a year running Stop signs with one or two causing me to slam on the breaks or swerve to avoid hitting them. I almost got killed two weeks ago crossing the road by the local Dog Park. I crossed half of the road with the dog and noticed the other approaching car hadn’t slowed down so I started to shorten my stride and the dog’s leash. Still the car didn’t slow down so I stopped half-way across the road, with the dog, on a crosswalk in bright sunshine. She then saw me, she was around 20 feet from me. There was a momentary shriek of rubber and she then swerved away from me and figured she could make it through. And all of this without dropping the cellphone, impressive.
Canadians drive like Americans, like it’s their right, their right of way and like a bunch of idiots. Whoever decided the oriental immigrants could be given BC licenses without a driving test needs to be hung as I’ve never encountered a group of drivers with such a blatant disregard for road signs and road sense.