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Re Porter - Big problems with driving
bethany porter

I had someone reach out to me wanting me to draw attention to a big problem not only in this town, but in this country. This problem is a massive failure in education. A massive failure in common sense and something must be done about it. Of course, the problem I am referring to is the four-way stop dilemma. 

Yes, this person reached out to me because he was fed up with people not knowing what to do at four-way stops. To be honest, I am fed up too. 

He says every time he goes to a four-way stop, no one knows when to go and just waves him on even when it is their turn to go. This type of stop setup can be difficult for first-time drivers. I get it, four cars all looking at each other can be intimidating when you aren’t sure what to do. However, there is no excuse for longtime drivers not to know what to do. 

Southern hospitality has no place at a four-way stop. If it is your turn to go, GO! It messes up the whole system and confuses everyone when someone decides to forfeit their turn and wave someone on. The only acceptable time to motion for someone to go at a four-way stop, is if you get there at the same time. This happens pretty often and it is OK to allow someone to go before you if you aren’t sure who got there first. Just don’t be the person who messes up the whole system. 

Basically, the driver who gets to the four-way stop first, gets to go first. The other drivers will then go in the order they arrived. Playground rules still apply at four-way stops, meaning wait your turn. Also USE YOUR TURN SIGNAL! Everything will move smoothly if other drivers know which way you are going. 

Sometimes people take stop signs as a suggestion. Definitely don’t do that at a four-way stop. Blowing through a four-way stop is stupid, reckless, illegal, and will likely result in a wreck or at least some obscene gestures thrown your way.

On the subject of bad driving, people do realize that the “Wrong Way” and “Do Not Enter” signs mean you aren’t supposed to drive that way, right? Well many people who drive downtown need to go back to driving school because nearly every week for the past month I have come face to face with cars driving the wrong way downtown. 

I was wanting to turn left at the red light by City Hall and to my surprise someone was in my way driving the wrong way on a one-way road. It shocked me a little because I wasn’t expecting to dodge head-on collisions on my way to work on a one-way street.

Please pay attention while driving and remember how things work. Four-way stops and driving the right direction shouldn’t be rocket science, but apparently it is for some. If you happen to still be unclear about the four-way stop rules, Google it. 

Standard reporter Bethany Porter can be reached at 473-2191.