An Open Letter to Drivers in Semi-Winter Conditions

Dear Person-I-Share-the-Road-With: Chances are we’ve shared the road at some other point over the last half year. For some of, you this may be much more frequent. Given this fact, I will assume that you know where you are going, that you’ve taken this route before, and most likely, you will take this route again.

1. The road is the same today as it was yesterday. The snow did not construct any new stoplights. The ice did not cause any lanes to slide away. Your exit is still in the same spot. Plan accordingly.

2. I understand the need to drive cautiously. I will try and do the same. However, recognize that if you leave more than 5 car lengths between you and the car you are following, some one will fill that space. Quickly applying your brakes to get back to your 5-plus car length distance does not do you any good. Plus, it really freaks me out when I’m right behind you.

3. People run late on these types of days. Know this ahead of time and plan accordingly. Either get up earlier to scrape your windows or accept being 10 minutes late and scrape your windows. The scraping-of-the-windows should not be the optional part of your morning. You cause me to drive unsafely to get away from you when the only spot you can see out of is a small 3-inch hole in the ice on your windshield.

4. When snow covers the lane markings, follow the tire tracks that everyone else uses. We all see that we’re driving on the white line too. Driving correctly in the lane does nothing more than cause a snow cloud, take up both “lanes” of traffic, and make all the other drivers call you an ass in the privacy of their own cars.

5. Your 4-wheel drive monstrosity does not make you all powerful. You stop as well as everyone else one the road. If you’re trying to drive 20 mph faster than everyone else, waiting for the police and ambulance when you crush a Toyota Echo will make you later to work than if you just flow with traffic.

To everyone else that none of the above refer to: thank you and happy driving.