Car Wars: Kingman area motorists vent on distracted drivers, shortage of 'blinker fluid'

JC AMBERLYN/Miner<BR>
Traffic on Stockton Hill Road is fraught with peril during the lunch hour, but according to many residents, Kingman’s busiest commercial corridor is not the only place drivers seem distracted, confused or oblivious.

JC AMBERLYN/Miner<BR> Traffic on Stockton Hill Road is fraught with peril during the lunch hour, but according to many residents, Kingman’s busiest commercial corridor is not the only place drivers seem distracted, confused or oblivious.

KINGMAN - Americans like to think whatever city they live in has the worst drivers.

Kingman is no different, even though people in big cities who have a 20-mile, 60-minute commute would beg to differ.

The Miner enlisted the help of people who belong to a Kingman-based Facebook page and law enforcement officers from the Mohave County Sheriff's Office and Kingman Police Department to answer questions. Members of the Kingman Arizona Crime Info/Rumor Mill Facebook page were asked to name their biggest pet peeves with the driving habits of their fellow citizens.

Deputies and officers were asked to answer these three questions:

• What is the most common reason you pull over a motorist? (Hint: Lay off the gas, all you Dale Earnhardt Jr. fans.)

• What traffic rules do drivers most misunderstand or are unaware exists? (Apparently, a lot of people cheated when they took their driver's license exam.)

• What is the strangest or most creative reason a motorist gave you to explain their driving? (We're going to have fun with this one. See the accompanying story.)

In addition to thinking their city or town is home to the worst drivers, Americans also like to think their personal driving skills are above average and that they mostly obey all traffic rules.

The truth is that anyone who has driven a vehicle for any amount of time has made mistakes, big or small, or are plain inconsiderate, intentional or not.

Here are the top three most annoying driver behaviors, according to about 90 residents who responded:

• Drivers who don't use turn signals

• Texting or otherwise distracted drivers

• Speeders and slow pokes

Tailgaters, red light runners, random U-turners, bad mergers, litterbugs, tourists, four-way-stop etiquette breakers and cigarette tossers were other peeves that frost people's flakes.

Here's a sampling of the comments:

Mara Jo Furman said, "Texting/talking and driving. They are never paying enough attention!"

Hali Bug Hodges said, "People who smoke with children in the car!!! And the shortage of blinker fluid in this town."

Jenn Mote said, "Yes, slow drivers! It's one thing doing a little under the speed limit, but doing 15 in a 35 is irritating."

Robert McAnally said, "People driving around sightseeing [and] not paying attention to the road and constantly driving with their foot on the brake pedal."

Sean Sutherland voiced a problem with courtesy: "The people who don't know how four-way stops work. I don't need you to wave. I know when I'm supposed to go. Pay attention to yourself and stop directing traffic."

Joanne Longo has a problem with discourtesy: "People who don't thank you with a wave when you let them out of a parking lot onto the street."

Cindy Lee and Stefanie Boop shared the same complaint.

Lee: "Two vehicles driving the same speed side by side up the road. Drives me nuts!!!"

Boop: "Coming into Kingman on the I-40 and a semi going 35 miles an hour gets over to pass another semi going 35 mph only to make it half way up the hill, never pass and get back behind the same semi ..."

Suzanne Samuela-Maldonado touched on a deadly serious topic when she implored drivers to vigilantly look out for motorcyclists. "Watch out, folks! I, and all motorcyclists, have much to live for, me, namely, four children and seven grandchildren that love their Grammy."

"Our police are too busy with drug- and alcohol-related crimes and domestic problems to effectively and selectively enforce traffic laws and other minor offenses," said Joe Gilbert.

Bill Bowling summed up everything with humor when he wrote, "You are aware the Insurance Institute of America recently published statistics indicating that eight of 10 drivers in America are highly skilled and of good temper while behind the wheel.

"The other two are right here in Kingman. You're welcome."

Also see related story: Bad driving from the cops' point of view; excuses range from sad to hilarious

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