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Let's talk about cars

Let's talk about cars

Old Jan 23rd 2019, 10:45 am
  #7171  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by chawkins99
I did Manchester Airport to Birmingham (and back) in December. Even at 4am with very little traffic, you have to stick to 50mph.

I had a Vauxhall Mokka (UK version of the Buick Encore) which was a decent car by UK standards. I drove 7 hours each way to Orlando airport and was MUCH less stressful than the 2 hour drive on the M6. The M6 roadworks have been ongoing for 3-4 years and expected for another 3-4 years.
I quite often drive 700 miles from Scottsdale to the Bay Area, broken into two drives of about 6 hours each (stopping overnight in LA area), and I find that drive way less stressful than the 4 hours I spent on the motorway the other day. Tonight I had snow and ice to contend with! The major streets and motorways were all cleared but the 'local' streets were quite treacherous. It's been 20+ years since I came here in the winter and it's been quite the reminder.
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Old Jan 23rd 2019, 1:29 pm
  #7172  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by Steerpike
Drove down the M6/M1 yesterday from Preston to St Albans. it felt like half the journey was through 50 mph 'average speed' zones, which is incredibly stressful - there wasn't too much traffic so you could easily drift up to 55, and you know that since it's averaged, you 'must' even out below 50 so have to drop below 50... I finally set the cruise control and stopped looking at the rearview mirror every 5 seconds, which helped. Lanes were very narrow also, with big lorries seemingly inches from me at all times. I was lucky enough to rent a Kia Sportage automatic this time, which is a half-decent car by UK standards (IMHO - good because it has auto, relatively high seating position, rearview camera, lane-keep features, etc). Drove from St Albans to Leeds today on A1(M), slightly less stressful.
I was driving today on the M11/A11/A14 and there aren't really many speed cameras. I think a few further up the A14 but none around me (Cambridge area). I don't know if it's me being used to a more aggressive (and shit) style of driving in the US or not but, motorists here seem to be a lot calmer than I remember. Obviously there's the occasional knobhead/photocopier salesman in his Insignia or 3-series diesel driving like a moron but for the most part people seemed to be courteous and keeping sensible distances.

That said... I can't wait to get back to the US on Saturday!
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Old Jan 23rd 2019, 1:51 pm
  #7173  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by BenK91
I was driving today on the M11/A11/A14 and there aren't really many speed cameras. I think a few further up the A14 but none around me (Cambridge area). I don't know if it's me being used to a more aggressive (and shit) style of driving in the US or not but, motorists here seem to be a lot calmer than I remember. Obviously there's the occasional knobhead/photocopier salesman in his Insignia or 3-series diesel driving like a moron but for the most part people seemed to be courteous and keeping sensible distances.

That said... I can't wait to get back to the US on Saturday!
On the whole, UK drivers have always been better and more considerate than US drivers. Think lane discipline. Non-existent in the US.

Much to do with the driving test and training requirements.
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Old Jan 23rd 2019, 5:01 pm
  #7174  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by chawkins99
On the whole, UK drivers have always been better and more considerate than US drivers. Think lane discipline. Non-existent in the US.

Much to do with the driving test and training requirements.
Living in California I disagree. Despite the congestion drivers here are surprisingly considerate. On the other hand from what I've seen of drivers in Florida I agree. Too many drivers who moved there from New York and Canada.

Last edited by dc koop; Jan 23rd 2019 at 5:04 pm.
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Old Jan 23rd 2019, 5:02 pm
  #7175  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by chawkins99
On the whole, UK drivers have always been better and more considerate than US drivers. Think lane discipline. Non-existent in the US.

Much to do with the driving test and training requirements.
The rules in the US are not always the same as in Britain. A lot of people don't know this.

Q Is it illegal in California to pass on the right on the freeway?
A No, but some folks think it’s illegal. Passing on the far right or slow lane is legal, as long as you are not in an exit-only lane before an offramp or crossing over the solid white line onto the shoulder. But it can be risky, especially when motorcyclists are splitting lanes.

Many folks misinterpret the signs that say “SLOWER TRAFFIC KEEP RIGHT” as prohibiting passing on the right. It does not. But it is unwise to move right to get around slower traffic, as drivers ahead often aren’t expecting such a lane change. But if done safely, it is legal.









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Old Jan 23rd 2019, 5:03 pm
  #7176  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by dc koop
Living in California I disagree. Despite the congestion drivers here are surprisingly considerate. On the other hand from what I've seen of drivers in Florida I agree. Too many drivers who moved there from New York.
Lane discipline? In California?
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Old Jan 23rd 2019, 5:07 pm
  #7177  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by Cape Blue
Lane discipline? In California?
For the very most part yes. Lane changing on a dense but fast moving freeway without care and attention can be very hazardous to health
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Old Jan 23rd 2019, 9:29 pm
  #7178  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by dc koop
Living in California I disagree. Despite the congestion drivers here are surprisingly considerate. On the other hand from what I've seen of drivers in Florida I agree. Too many drivers who moved there from New York and Canada.
The practical part of the driving test in Florida is a joke, I did two circuits around cones on an off road area not much larger than a tennis court, and then got marked down for using my mirrors whilst reversing.
Just as I was leaving the building, post pass, an examiner had taken a little old lady, who'd recently moved to the state, ( this I already knew because her daughter, who couldn't have been a day younger than 70, had very loudly explained stuff to the examiner in the waiting room!) outside to her car, checked round it to make sure it was all there, lights working, etc, and was now banging on the window shouting at the old lady to let her into the car, presumably the old gal had forgotten where she was and was wondering who the nutty kid was banging on her window. No doubt she passed with flying colours!
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Old Jan 23rd 2019, 10:37 pm
  #7179  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by vespucci
The rules in the US are not always the same as in Britain. A lot of people don't know this.

Q Is it illegal in California to pass on the right on the freeway?
A No, but some folks think it’s illegal. Passing on the far right or slow lane is legal, as long as you are not in an exit-only lane before an offramp or crossing over the solid white line onto the shoulder. But it can be risky, especially when motorcyclists are splitting lanes.

Many folks misinterpret the signs that say “SLOWER TRAFFIC KEEP RIGHT” as prohibiting passing on the right. It does not. But it is unwise to move right to get around slower traffic, as drivers ahead often aren’t expecting such a lane change. But if done safely, it is legal.
I don't believe passing on the right is illegal anywhere in the US (I'm sure someone will put me right) but lane discipline is still a problem. How many times have you been stuck behind someone doing 60 in the left lane and no opportunity to 'undertake' because the traffic in the left is also doing 60? A classic 'slower traffic, keep right' situation. I have regularly been driving on an otherwise empty interstate, passed an entry ramp and watched in my rear view mirror someone join and immediately move to the left lane and stay there completely oblivious to others.

Try driving Atlanta in the rush hour. There are many idiots that weave in and out of traffic just to gain a few seconds.

My comment 'On the whole UK drivers are more considerate' is my opinion and my experience. Many US drivers are considerate. Many more are not.
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Old Jan 23rd 2019, 11:38 pm
  #7180  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Try driving Atlanta in the rush hour. There are many idiots that weave in and out of traffic just to gain a few seconds.
I avoid it like the plague. I would rather fly out of Greenville SC and change aircraft at Dulles then to have to drive to ATL.
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Old Jan 24th 2019, 1:29 am
  #7181  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by civilservant
I avoid it like the plague. I would rather fly out of Greenville SC and change aircraft at Dulles then to have to drive to ATL.
I don't have a problem with the weaving and crazy driving now that I'm used to it. But I hate the stop-go, or as is more often the case stop-stop-stop-go-stop-stop-stop.
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Old Jan 24th 2019, 2:33 am
  #7182  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by vespucci
The rules in the US are not always the same as in Britain. A lot of people don't know this.

Q Is it illegal in California to pass on the right on the freeway?
A No, but some folks think it’s illegal. Passing on the far right or slow lane is legal, as long as you are not in an exit-only lane before an offramp or crossing over the solid white line onto the shoulder. But it can be risky, especially when motorcyclists are splitting lanes.

Many folks misinterpret the signs that say “SLOWER TRAFFIC KEEP RIGHT” as prohibiting passing on the right. It does not. But it is unwise to move right to get around slower traffic, as drivers ahead often aren’t expecting such a lane change. But if done safely, it is legal.
I do most of my passing on the right these days, as I long since gave up lining up behind grandma or grandpa in the left lane doing exactly the speed limit. I don't live in CA.

I don't see many police on the interstate, certainly a lot fewer than when I first came here, and those I do see are mostly busy with wrecks, or on their way to somewhere else, not interested in enforcing traffic laws.
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Old Jan 24th 2019, 5:50 am
  #7183  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by zzrmark
The practical part of the driving test in Florida is a joke, I did two circuits around cones on an off road area not much larger than a tennis court, and then got marked down for using my mirrors whilst reversing.
Just as I was leaving the building, post pass, an examiner had taken a little old lady, who'd recently moved to the state, ( this I already knew because her daughter, who couldn't have been a day younger than 70, had very loudly explained stuff to the examiner in the waiting room!) outside to her car, checked round it to make sure it was all there, lights working, etc, and was now banging on the window shouting at the old lady to let her into the car, presumably the old gal had forgotten where she was and was wondering who the nutty kid was banging on her window. No doubt she passed with flying colours!
I've seen one or two senior drivers in Florida with oxygen tanks. Another thing is the absence of consideration by the drivers towards pedestrians even on crosswalks.

The test in California is probably just as basic as that in Florida. A written test with about 18 questions to answer and less than three mistakes to pass, vision, color and depth perception eye test. Straightforward practical test, surface streets, parallel parking demonstration, couple of questions from the examiner while driving such as "what is the speed limit on this part of the road?" and "describe the vehicle behind you and the approximate distance of that vehicle?"

I was reluctant to drive the freeways after passing the test.....a case of intimidation. One day I accidentally ended up in the lane leading onto a freeway and was on the on ramp before I knew it. Looked back to see if I could back off. No luck two cars following behind me. No choice but to get on and do it. Seems completely ridiculous all these years later and I still get a chuckle when I think back on it

Last edited by dc koop; Jan 24th 2019 at 5:55 am.
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Old Jan 24th 2019, 6:10 am
  #7184  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

You can pass on the right lane in California. Large trailer trucks are confined to the slow lane or the lane next to it. Truck drivers understandably prefer to use that lane to avoid having to slow down for vehicles which are entering in the slow lane. You can always tell an out of State truck driver. He's the one driving in the third lane . He probably doesn't know he's breaking the law but the Highway Patrol are generally nowhere around. Many of them are required to be stationed at places where roadwork is going on.
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Old Jan 24th 2019, 6:15 am
  #7185  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by dc koop
For the very most part yes. Lane changing on a dense but fast moving freeway without care and attention can be very hazardous to health
Certainly not my experience of California driving.
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