Yo, slow the #@%! down

By MICHAEL ANDERSON

They’re everywhere. I see them, regardless of where in Tucson I’m at.

Cacti? Pawn shops? Walgreens? No. I’m talking about reckless drivers, and they really piss me off.

Whether I’m driving down Golf Links, stopping to buy groceries or going to class, they’re there—inconsiderate people in a hurry, endangering others.

Arizona in general is a dangerous place to drive. According to the most recent Department of Transportation statistics (2008-2011), Arizona suffered 1.37 fatalities per 100 million miles driven.

The national average was 1.16, and the safest states had less than half Arizona’s rate.

As for Tucson, motorists seem to constantly whip around parking lots, corner way too fast around narrow turns or zig-zag jackasstically through traffic, all so they can be one car-length ahead of me at the next stoplight.

Tucson is also filled with narrow, crumbling roads, unsafe intersections and old confusing neighborhoods.

Throw in a lack of bike lanes and sidewalks, a large number of pedestrians and bicyclists and plenty of drivers unfamiliar with the idiosyncrasies of Arizona roads, and you’ve got a deadly mix.

It’s madness.

Please, people, just slow down and show a bit more respect for your fellow citizens. It won’t hurt. I promise.

What might really hurt is if your haste ends up seriously injuring or even killing someone.

I would be devastated if I hit and killed somebody’s pet, let alone a fellow human being.

Never mind the legal and financial ramifications. What would you say to the parent of a child you just hit? Or the child whose mother you just killed?

Hopefully you’ll never have to figure that out.

Think I’m making too big a deal about this?

Perhaps, but consider this: Since I proposed this column, my Aztec Press colleague Loc Tran’s car was the innocent victim of a reckless driver, and my friend Amanda saw two idiots doing multiple donuts on Golf Links near Swan at 8:30 a.m.

Clearly some people out there have been watching way too many “Fast and Furious” movies.

Let’s face it, folks—Tucson is an inherently unsafe driving town to begin with. Let’s not complicate the issue.

Pg06 - traffic

Aztec Press photo illustration by Larry Gaurano

Pg06-Opinion-Michael Anderson

Michael Anderson

Anderson is a lifelong student of history who wants everyone to get where they’re going safely. Is that really too much to ask?

Filed Under: Opinion

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  1. Kevin says:

    When I’m on foot, I like to carry rocks to wing at cars don’t yield to me in marked crosswalks. Pinged a Porsche Boxster once in a crosswalk with red lights. That was satisfying.

    As for people going “slow” in the left lane: I tend to drive exactly the speed limit, and regardless of what lane I’m in, people constantly tailgate and swerve around me like I’m doing fifteen under. Got your tags on my dash cam, idiots!

  2. Plato says:

    Hurry the F#$% up or gettoutatheway already!

    Tucson is dangerous because of inattentive, slow moving, courtesy junkies and speed nazis who would rather block lanes, be pverly polite, and enforce their notion of civility than just drive predicatbly and follow the rules of the road. Stopping to let that car in? That is actually illegal and dumb. Going slow in the left lane? Dangerous and rude. Some people have to get where they’re going. Yes, some speeders are dangerous, but the people who refuse to go with the flow are worse.

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