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Road Manners And Safety - Articles Surfing
Good manners when driving on public roads are an aid to safety and reduce personal stress. Follow these simple hints and observations to make your driving day more pleasurable.
1. In heavy rain do not use your emergency light or High-Beam. If the emergency light, is partly obscured, it could give an other driver a turning signal thus causing an accident. The glare from the High-Beam could blind an oncoming driver. Use your normal "dipped" headlight, stay to the curb side of the road and double your normal "safe stopping" distance from the car in front of you until the road is dry.
2. Use of "flashing" High Beam as a signal to other drivers.There is NO written law about this. It is a practice that varies from country to country. In Europe, if a car flashes you from behind, he is asking you to yield (give over) so that he can pass. It is also used to tell cars in other lanes that you will yield so that they can get into the traffic stream. Example in Thailand the reverse happens. A Thai driver will warn others that he is "coming-through" so then flash you to ask you to *hold back*. This is because the Thais do not have Right of Way rules. Further, it is customary in most countries to wave a hand or nod the head by way of thanks for being let-in or let through the traffic. Taking your hand off the wheel, however, or breaking your attention to the traffic is dangerous, so DON'T DO IT unless you have a clear road ahead.
3. Parking your car for a short-stay, with emergency lights blinking, is not respected in Thailand or most other countries. You just cause inconvenience to others and will get a traffic fine.
European drivers are trained to look into their rear mirrors before applying the foot brake. If you keep a "safe stopping distance" between you and the car in front (double on a wet road) then there should be no problem. If a driver enters your path from a side road or a motorway lane... decrease speed until a new "safe stopping distance" is achieved. Don*t expect him to speed-up. He may have a slower car than yours.
5. Reduce speed in a built-up are and go even slower when passing a school or a children's play area.
6. The yellow (Amber) traffic light.
The green light changes to red after the amber has given warning that the light will change soon. Slow down and prepare to stop on the amber light, you'll just live longer.
7. Keep to the edge of the road. Most oriental people have bad peripheral vision so tend to stay in the middle off the road. When the have to turn a corner they cut across the corner risking a collision with on-coming traffic. When turning corners in Thailand be very careful as the oncoming drivers may not see you.
Driving manners and practices are very important. It is best to let the other car go first and wait. Patience and consideration for others is absolutely essential
Written by Somchai Naamphai
Copyright © 1995 - Photius Coutsoukis (All Rights Reserved).
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