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Why do California Drivers Suck?
Why do California drivers suck?
On this page I’ll outline why they suck vs. other states. There may be a few areas in other states that have worse drivers. I’m not saying California drivers are the worst in the US or world but they’re really bad compared to other states I’ve been in. I work in an international company and I often hear about how bad the drivers are from their perspective.
Common California Driver Mistakes
Bad Right Turn into Traffic
Quite often you see people that will turn right in front of you cutting you off when you are going some insane speed. They either don’t gauge your speed properly or don’t care how fast you’re going. The end result is you have to brake or dodge them by changing lanes. At worst, they mimic every lane change you do, continuing to block you as you try to get around them. Usually I air horn them or go around and cut them off closely with no signal. If they’re really bad and don’t even look they can crash into you if they turn at the last moment when you are about to cross their path.
Pro Tip: So be aware whenever someone looks like they might be turning right in front of you and be prepared to brake or change lanes. If you’re the one turning right and a car is coming, make sure you judge their speed. Then either wait for them to pass or pull out and front of them and change to the middle lane or speed up very quickly. If you have a fast car like mine, often I pull out and the person coming is mad I pulled out but I’m so fast they can’t ever catch up to complain properly. So funny.
California leaves little space between cars. California has a massive amount of cars. Because of this, it’s not really practical to leave a large space between you and the car ahead of you. If everyone had the legal/safe amount of space there would be massive traffic jams there no one would get anywhere. There’s just too many cars and not enough road to support that.
You only see large spacing when it rains or in more rural areas of California. Of course for safety reasons it’s smart to leave enough space behind the car ahead of you but in reality what happens is people get mad and just pass you on the right and go ahead of you. In California it’s important to have good brakes. Always get your brakes checked out every year or less and replace the pads. Have good tires too. I spun out in the rain because my tires were not in good shape.
Because it’s so common to have people follow you so closely it’s important to not do any sudden moves and to signal and to not brake suddenly if you can help it.
If you’re the type of driver that wants a safe amount of space ahead of you, you need to get the fuck out of the way and stay in the slow or middle lanes because that crap doesn’t fly in California.
If you come to California you better hope it doesn’t rain. It almost never rains here. When it does rain, people are totally unprepared. Many of them have bald tires and bad brakes. When the roads get slick, they spin out or crash. They also drive way too fast for the rain or drive way too slow. I have a AWD with super good rain tires so I swear my car is better in the rain or at least exactly the same. So I love the rain. Anyway, when it rains, you should see the news and the amount of crashes. One day driving to work in 1997 I saw at least 12 crashes on my way to work. It was like mad max. There were so many crashes that the cops hadn’t even responded to them all. There were just people in the middle of the road crashed and you had to drive around them like some apocalypic story. California also floods really bad during the rain. Houses fall of cliffs, etc. When people from other states like Oregon who reguarlly deal with rain come here, they’re shocked as to how bad California drivers are in the rain. What is wrong with these people? Have they ever seen rain before? It almost never rains here.
Rain Blamed For Sixfold Jump in LA Crashes – “Collisions in Los Angeles County increased more than 470 percent Saturday morning compared to the same (dry) time last week.”
“The California Highway Patrol recorded 315 crashes on Southern California freeways between 12:01 a.m. and 9 a.m. on Saturday”
315!?!?!?!? See what I mean?
Slower Drivers must stick to the right.
California is full of multiple lanes. In my city they have as many as 4 lanes in both directions and that’s not even the freeway. There’s signs all over that slower traffic should hang to the right. Common sense says the fast drivers should be on the left lanes and the slow drivers on the right lanes. But no one in California actually does that. I see it about once a month. The only way they get out of the way is if you have a giant truck and they have a small car. All day long you see idiots in the fast lane going slow as shit refusing to get out of the way. In other countries or states you “beam” them with the lights to tell them to move. Then the nice drivers move out of the way. But in California if you do that, they just get mad and start slowing down even more.
Tip: When someone comes behind you that is traveling faster than you, turn on your right blinker and move to the right and let them by.
Blocking Lane Changes
For some reason Californians see lane changes as an attack on their car. Whenever they see a blinker they rush to block the person from getting over. Of course there are some nice people but they are kind of rare. It’s 20% of the time someone lets you in. The counter move most people do is to not use your blinker and do a “sorry blinker” after you’ve already started to change lanes. That prevents people from blocking you. But that’s dangerous. They might do something you might not expect because they are not expecting you to changing lanes.
No Blinkers (turn signals)
It’s common to see all sorts of lane changes without a blinker. It’s annoying. The reason people don’t use the blinker is they don’t want to warn people causing another car to block their lane change.
Tip: Always try to use your blinker even when no one is around.
Everyone and their brother cuts in
For traffic to work properly people have to let cars in and merge properly. But California drivers are such jerks this often doesn’t work. During rush hour especially people cheat and cut over and use merge lanes or the shoulder to pass a bunch of people on the right and cut in. When people need to merge, they fight to block them for merging. One time I saw a guy let in over 20-25 cars. I got so mad I blew my horn at him. That is being too generous. On the other hand, some people don’t let anyone in at all.
Tip: Let one car in. Try to do every other car.
Idiots head straight to the fast lane
On the freeway it’s very common to see people enter the freeway at 50 mph as cars are going 65-75 mph and instantly cut left over 3+ lanes to the fast lane at a slow speed. This causes everyone behind them to brake or dodge them. You see this every trip you go on. They are just too impatient to wait until they get going fast enough to make their way to the fast lane. They also commonly go way slower in the fast lane causing other drivers to have to pass them on the right.
Tip: Enter the freeway at the speed over other cars. 60+ mph minimum unless the exit is one of those crazy short ones. Wait until you build up speed and work your way over (If you have to) over a long distance and a slow time. Instead of “suiciding to the fast lane.”
Only One Headlight
Don’t be lazy. Fix your broken headlights. One time I counted 22 cars without a headlight going down a hill to my college. Just go down to the auto parts store and find the right one. Or you can take it to the dealer. Or you can probably go to somewhere like Jiffy Lube. Especially don’t use your brights to pretend you have two headlights. That blinds other drivers.
You should do the same for brake lights and tail lights. Always replace those ASAP.