20 October 2005
Have you noticed that no one uses turn signals anymore? It's true. I do a lot of informal surveys when I'm driving--checking the next 10 cars that turn, say--and I have found that most drivers don't signal their turns. Soon new car models won't come with turn signals; they're obsolete. Talking this development over recently with a friend, I wondered why it was happening. He pointed out that using turn signals gives information to the enemy--i.e., other drivers. He may be on to something. People are driving a lot more aggressively these days--especially SUV drivers, who apparently think they're invincible inside those grotesquely oversized gas-guzzlers. Another road hazard, one that's gaining traction by the day, is spontaneous U-turns. These occur when someone misses his turn and is too impatient to drive to the next intersection and find a safe way to turn around. Instead, he abruptly executes a midblock U-turn right in front of you, endangering every other vehicle in the vicinity. But what does he care? He's the only driver on the road, so he can do anything he wants.