Wednesday, May 20, 2009

What really does a 4 way stop mean?

What is so mysterious about 4 way stops? Is it the stopping part? Is it that a driver has to turn their neck two different ways and pay attention to an oncoming car? When did drivers stop understanding how to take turns? I am fortunate to live one house down from a very busy four way stop and it has provided me with no end of entertainment. I have walked outside at 2:00am in my barefeet to aid a drunk driver who mowed down one of the stop signs, I been first on the scene of a full head on collision mid day of a driving who claimed he "never saw the sign" - it's a 4 way stop!! There are 4 fricken signs in front of you! I have had over 25 close calls with cars not knowing that you count 1-2-3- and maybe 4 and then go- but look out for the woman with the 3 dogs who is actually already crossing. You might not want to hit her.

My favourite are the ones turning right at a 4 way. The ones who don't actually turn into the correct turning lane but into the far left one, and then at the last minute realize that they have caused an accident because they weren't watching. The thought that since they were in a turning lane that they didn't have to actually wait for anyone. Then there are the cyclists who sometimes want to be pedestrians, sometimes go up on the sidewalks, but then sometimes decide to follow the rules of the road and signal acting like a car. But cars don't understand bikers so they forget to count them and just go causing the biker to have to either put their hand out and actually push themselves away from the car that is about to hit them, or bail onto the sidewalk to avoid being killed.

Why am I going on about 4 way stops? Because living next to one subjects me to the daily idiocy of drivers, and today on my way home from work- 8 feet from my house I witnessed yet another hunk of metal fly through the intersection with no regard for anyone. Will there ever be a night that I don't hear the screech of tires? Perhaps someday. But I doubt it.

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