Your perfect double-handed grip on the steering wheel may slip a little over time, and bad driving habits may set in as well. Whether you realize such a thing is happening, understand that some annoying driving habits may be illegal and affect car safety. On the other hand, if you get annoyed, it could be because some drivers are just plain rude or don’t know how to drive.
That means it’s sometimes difficult not to get frustrated because of other motorists’ bad habits. Here are five textbook moves that annoying drivers regularly do, according to a survey by Click4Reg.
Failure to use a turn signal
You shouldn’t expect other drivers to know where you’re headed if you don’t alert them. So you should always use a turn signal whenever necessary. Failure to do so can throw other drivers off and put you in harm’s way. Perhaps the most annoying driving habit is slowing down to turn without putting your blinker on.
Doing so may catch drivers behind you off-guard, and you could get rear-ended. The bottom line here is that it becomes pretty frustrating when other drivers don’t know where you intend to go.
Failure to turn off high-beam/bright headlights
Using your high beams when there’s oncoming traffic is inconsiderate. You also need to understand that although using bright headlights in rural areas is OK, they can be blinding and distracting to other drivers. Another annoying and illegal habit is flashing your high beams at others.
Your intention might be to alert oncoming traffic to the presence of speed traps or police cars. That may be helpful to other drivers, but it is a habit you need to avoid. Failing to turn off your car’s high beams also means other drivers will struggle to keep their eyes open, and squinting affects their visibility.
When that’s the case, you could end up causing an avoidable accident because you have no idea that turning your high beams off is a safety precaution.
Drive 10 mph below the speed limit
Some drivers are not confident driving 80 mph in an 80-mph zone. The interesting bit is that most drivers who do 70 mph in an 80-mph zone continue the same speed through a 60-mph zone. That’s not only annoying but also dangerous. The implication here is that if you’re going to drive slower than the rest of the pack, the least you can do is remain consistent. Otherwise, you’ll put yourself and other drivers in harm’s way.
Also, it can be frustrating to others if you’re driving 10 mph below the speed limit and motorists behind you cannot pass. So driving below the set speed limit in such situations drives those behind you up the wall.
Undoubtedly, tailgating is annoying for both parties in such a situation. The reason is that the driver in the back is angry that the one in front cannot go faster, and the driver in the front is uneasy because the car behind them won’t keep off their bumper. That is unnecessary tension. Over and above that, tailgating can lead to intentional reactions such as brake checking and accidents.
When it’s safe to pass another driver, you should do so in a different lane if you want to go faster. However, if overtaking isn’t an option, ensure you maintain a reasonable and prudent distance from other vehicles.
Last-minute merging and lane switching
You cannot afford to make assumptions while on the road because you don’t know other drivers’ intentions. That’s especially true while driving in a lane that merges into another one or when switching lanes. As such, if you intend to switch lanes, don’t do it hastily. Use your blinker, and always check your side mirror and blind spot before switching lanes.
A last-minute merge or lane change is dangerous and can cause accidents. Patience pays in such situations. And good driving habits begin with good communication, Motoring Research reports.