Missouri Has Irresponsible Drivers, But Can We Actually Drive?
Fox 2 looked at a new study that shows Missouri makes the list of the Top 10 States with irresponsible drivers. But does that report actually mean we don't know how to drive?
No, it actually doesn't. The study Fox 2 is reporting on looked at the number of uninsured drivers, driving while under the influence arrests, and the number of deaths per 100 million miles driven. Additionally, the study took into account how often residents searched for the terms traffic ticket or speeding ticket.
Yet, much of this doesn't tell whether we truly know how to drive in Missouri. For example, driving without insurance is definitely irresponsible and a pain in the ass for those of us who carry insurance. Yet, that alone doesn't mean you're a crappy driver. Neither does the number of deaths per 100 million miles driven. Let's face it, many of our roads are rural with higher speeds. That can lead to worse injuries and more death when accidents happen.
That said, driving under the influence and the prevalence of googling traffic ticket or speeding ticket may shed some light on whether or not Missourians are actually good drivers, irresponsible drivers, or somewhere in between.
I do most of my driving on Highway 50 between Warrensburg and Sedalia, and really, I can't complain about the drivers. Most of us probably speed a little bit, but just enough to keep up with the flow of traffic. About 70 mph in a 65 mph zone does the trick usually. And even those passing me aren't driving like a bat out of hell.
The biggest problem I notice, and I've even made this mistake myself, is turning on Highway 50 nowhere near a traffic light and the vehicle can't get up to speed quickly enough to prevent someone driving at highway speed from needing to slow down significantly.
Now that section of I-435 heading into Overland Park, Kansas. That's another story entirely. Is it possible for anyone to not drive irresponsibly on that road? Speed limits seem like a suggestion. Lots of drivers changing lanes and cutting other people off. If you're not on your toes you might wreck, and then cause one of those gapers blocks that seem to be the only thing that slow drivers down there.
Finally, could we drive better in town? Sure cruising on South Limit or Broadway Boulevard some drivers make some stupid choices. People driving at a pokey pace, and others trying to beat everyone to the next red light. The occasional tailgater. Or a person who almost missed their turn trying to fix the problem instead of just going down to the next light.
Yet here's the thing. Having lived in many places and had many driving experiences. No, we're not much better or worse than anywhere else I've been. Everyone in Connecticut on I-95 between Bridgeport and Hartford drives like the crowd on I-435 going into Overland Park. Texas drivers are notoriously worse for in-traffic driving than the average Sedalian. And the average person driving on a Milwaukee highway is just as likely to pull out in front of you and force you to slow down as someone merging into Highway 50.
The bottom line, we may be irresponsible drivers in Missouri but I wouldn't say we're any worse at driving than many drivers in many other states.