Don’t block intersections.
Apologies for the poor shot but my tech skills lack. What this is, is a picture of an intersection in Simcoe Ontario where a woman gave the finger last week. It is looking west on the Queensway near the corner of Queen Street.
Where it says “Stop Line” there is a stop light. Closer to the front of the photo it says “Intersection where I stopped”.
There was a red light when I stopped and you will note there is only room for one vehicle between the stop lines and the intersection coming from the north or right side. Because you are not supposed to block an intersection for any reason I stopped on the east side of the intersection. That was when I got the finger and almost got rear ended by the woman behind me. I could actually see her yelling at me, “Why did you stop there?” Her words were not quite that kind.
Indeed, why did I stop there? Because it is the law and for good reason. If someone was coming from other direction and needed to turn into that street they would not be able to if I was in the middle of the intersection. That could at worst cause a rear end collision and at best cause a traffic jam from the other direction. ( Just for note, I am not stopped there so the person making a right or left turn out of that street can get out. In that case, they should stay where they are because traffic on the highway has the right of way.)
Learn the difference between regular stop signs and four-way stops
It is very generous of people to signal me through when I’m stopped at a regular stop to make a left turn but if it’s not my turn it’s better that they go. It just works better. It’s not a four-way stop and people don’t take turns in order the same order as at a four-way stop. Read the book.
Waving people through an intersection
And just so you know, if you wave me through an intersection and I have an accident you could be held as liable for the accident. Know the rules and follow them. Don’t wave people through.
People who are angry with other people who are driving need to be sure they have grounds. If you see that woman in the black SUV who was giving me the finger and yelling because she had to break so hard let her know she would have been breaking the law if she stopped in that intersection. Maybe her license isn’t as important to her as mine is to me.
What is important is to know and understand the law. Sometimes it’s not easy to understand the rules but there are easy ways to learn about it. A refresher on the driver’s manual should not wait until you are 80 and have to take the test again. The rules change often and it is your responsibility to know what they are. Ignorance won’t save you a ticket or a lawsuit.
What can you do to learn more?
- Read the brochure that comes with your license renewal. It usually has the new laws.
- Talk to your insurance agent and get brochures and information they have. They also likely enclose some brochures about new rules in your renewal package. If not they will have info on their website.
- Ask CAA – Go online and look at the brochure they produce. You will find the 2016 brochure here. CAA even has a test on Facebook and you could win a prize. Just like their page and the prize link will show up in your feed.
- Read the manual from the MOT.
- If you are really zealous you could find a driver trainer and pay them to help you get it right.
- Take one of many free school bus driving courses available. You can brush up on your old skills, learn some new ones and have a little fun too. You don’t usually have to promise to drive for them but if you do you will find yourself getting as upset as I do with people who break the rules.