Every day I see gross violations of safety that put me and others at risk unnecessarily. I’m not talking about job safety or personal protective equipment. I could quote stats all day long but those are boring and subject to interpretation. These violations that I repeatedly witness are firmly based in the realm of common sense. I realize common sense is not as common as it once was, thanks to our anything-goes society. But these things really get my blood boiling, mostly because I do not understand the why of it. Let’s go through the list and then try to figure out the why.
I travel many miles a day between home, the base gym, and my small fitness studio on the north side of town. A few years ago, the state of Washington made talking or texting on a cell phone while driving illegal. Yet, I see people doing both every day. In fact, I’ve nearly been hit on the freeway and while riding my bike by stupid people talking on their phones and trying to drive at the same time. So what is it with people who talk and text while driving? To claim they do not know it is illegal is beyond ignorance. I say people who drive and talk or drive and text are anything but innocent. They are stupid, irresponsible, disrespectful, careless, I question their morals, values, and ethics, These talking drivers have zero integrity, and are very likely hypocrites. I can guarantee you, there is not one, not a single call or text, that is so important that you must risk my life while you drive with all your drama.
Oh, and another safety violation that is sharply on the rise – running red lights, particularly from left hand turn lanes. When did it become okay to routinely run red lights? What is your hurry? What is so important that you totally disregard safety and the law by running a red light? There is not one person important enough, not even the clown in chief, to warrant ignoring traffic safety wholesale. Who do you think you are?
I also ride my bicycle on the streets for a workout or to go to work. The last time I read the state drivers manual, bicyclist and pedestrians have just as much right to ride or walk along the streets and roads as motorists do. So what gives? Again, what is your hurry? What is so important that you must put me on my bicycle at risk because you can’t be bothered to simply slow down and move over to give me, or any other bicyclist, a full car width’s distance between me and your speeding car? I’ve had drivers pass by me so close that I could have reached out and touched their car. Why? Are you afraid to move over to the other lane? Do you even know that it is okay to slow down and give me extra space when you pass? Please explain to me why you are so careless about other’s lives. I suggest you try riding a bicycle one time on the streets and then you’ll know what it’s like.
This next one never ceases to amaze me. Speeding. Most of you do it. None of you has a valid reason for doing it. So what is wrong with driving the posted speed limit? It’s there for a reason, sometimes for a few reasons. Again, there is nothing so important, so imperative, that you have to speed and risk the lives of others just to get to where you’re going a few seconds sooner. How dare you. How arrogant. How many excuses have you dreamed up? No doubt “I’m late” is the number one excuse, or reason by your wacked out way of thinking. Well, guess what? You running late is not my fault. Nor should it be my risk. Did you know that it is okay to drive the legal speed limit so that everybody is safer?
What would you say to me if you caused me to wreck or if you injured me because you were on your precious cell phone, or if you ran a red light for being impatient? That you were in a hurry, late for your more important job, or that your phone call to your buddy could not possibly wait another five minutes? How pathetic. You better hope you incapacitate me because I will kick your butt for being stupid.
Whew! That felt good to get off my chest. No doubt I’ll sleep much better tonight. But seriously, if you or somebody you know is guilty of any of these common sense safety violations, pass the word and please slow down and think about it. Think how your actions affect others. Remember, it is okay to engage in situational awareness, to be courteous, to get up 10 minutes earlier so you are not late.
Please feel free to comment, but keep it polite and constructive.