Monday, August 4, 2014

Poor lane discipline - best excuse ever

I was talking to a friend of mine recently who is one of the worst lane discipline offenders. He'll get on to a motorway and head straight for the outside lane, then just sit there, no matter what. It's not such a problem in the US because we can (thankfully) overtake on both sides. It's still terrible driving, so I asked him directly why he did it - why didn't he use correct lane discipline? His answer was priceless : 'continually changing lanes wears out the indicators and steering'.
At first I thought he was joking but as the conversation went on it became obvious that he was dead serious. So I pursued this rich vein of absurdity further by asking what he'd do if he was on the Autobahn. His answer - same thing - sit in the outside lane. I pointed out that he would likely be wrecked and/or killed by a truck if he did that but he wasn't phased at all - it seems that in his little motoring universe, imagined wear and tear on his indicators and tyres more than excuses him from irritating all the other drivers around him. And/or breaking the law, because here in Utah, it's the law to move over if someone faster comes up behind you. Doesn't matter how fast you are going - you have to get out of the way. Of course, trying to explain that to someone who's an outside-lane-hog is like starting an argument on the internet (pointless). It's a pity it's not an enforceable law either - if the police did actually ticket people for hogging the outside lane, they'd make some serious bank, and they'd be attacking a cause of frustration, accidents, anger and bad driving.
But clearly it's easier to just ticket people for doing 1mph over the speed limit, even though speeding doesn't cause accidents.


Paul said...

I'm a little confused. What do you call the "Outside lane? To my way of thinking the outside lane is the lane to the right. So, in this case talking about your friend I see him as correct in moving his slower vehicle to the outside/right lane.
Have I misunderstood something here?

Paul said...

To clarify, I'm in the US.

Chris said...

Inside lane is the one closest to the on- and off-ramps. Outside lane is further left (in most of the world) or furthest right (where they drive in the 18th century, like England). So an outside lane hog is someone who hogs the left-most overtaking lane.

Paul said...

Ok, so we're in agreement in regard to where someone should drive if they are the slower vehicle.
However, we'll have to agree to disagree on the terminology of outside vs inside lanes. A quick Google search has the subject split as well. Even official documentation seems split on the subject.