The next time you are driving, count how many times your fellow drivers fail to use their turn signals. Chances are you will run out of fingers and toes before the engine is warm.
Nearly half of all drivers either don't signal to change lanes or fail to turn the indicator off if they do, according to a newly released report from the Society of Automotive Engineers. Researchers observed 12,000 cars and found a failure rate on lane changes of 48%. One driver in four failed to use a signal to make a turn, the report says.
Those findings back up a 2006 survey conducted by Response Insurance in which 57% of American drivers admitted not using turn signals when changing lanes. Among drivers ages 18 to 24, 71% said they don't use their signals.
CLEVELAND – A woman caught on camera driving on a sidewalk to avoid a Cleveland school bus that was unloading children will have to stand at an intersection wearing a sign warning about idiots.
Court records show a Cleveland Municipal Court judge on Monday ordered 32-year-old Shena Hardin to stand at an intersection for two days next week. She will have to wear a sign saying: "Only an idiot drives on the sidewalk to avoid a school bus."
On one brand new stretch of toll road southeast of Austin, Texas, you can cruise at 85 mph and not worry about being pulled over for speeding.
That’s because starting Wednesday, on this 41-mile segment of road, 85 mph is the legal speed limit. It’s the highest in the country, and some are wondering whether it might be a little too high.
The new section of toll road provides an alternative to I-35, the congested artery that’s the spine of the Texas highway system. People who have driven between San Antonio and Austin can atest to the traffic -- it can be bumper to bumper. In addition to long haul truckers headed from the border to the interior of the U.S. and back, there are also soccer moms hopping on and off to get to Walmart and thousands of suburban commuters headed into the office.
So an alternate highway makes sense, but why 85 mph? Clearly drivers want to get where they’re going faster, and at 85 mph, the new toll road potentially cuts the drive time from Austin to San Antonio in half.
The Texas Department of Transportation says although it’s fast, the new speed limit is safe. The road was designed for it. It’s straight and through rural areas. But critics point out the Transportation Department had a financial incentive to set the speed higher.
...The high speed has some concerned. Groups like the Governors Highway Safety Association point out that as speeds go up, so do fatalities...
... There also might be a financial consideration for drivers to stay under 85 mph. The Department of Energy estimates that for each 5 mph you go over 50 mph, you pay about a quarter extra a gallon in gas.
"Made in America" doesn't mean the same thing it did during this country's manufacturing heyday, especially when it comes to automobiles. Luckily for those flag-waving car buyers who wish to express their nationalism by purchasing a vehicle built mostly by American workers, the American Automobile Labeling Act of 1992 requires automakers to list the percentage of United States and Canadian parts, the country of assembly and the origin of the engine and transmission for every model sold.
Click through to see the ten 2012 vehicles that are the most "made in America."
I like the idea of buying American, but some companies that originated in America don't necessarily make their products in America -- and some companies that started as imports have become more domesticated. Check out the article above to see what cars are made mostly in America.
Talk about breaking through the glass ceiling. Or, in this case, breaking through the windshield of a car in a crash test. After a half-century of debate on the topic, government regulators for the first time last year made female crash-test dummies a mandatory aspect of crash evaluations. Safety advocates have argued for years that designing cars to be crash-safe based solely on the anatomy of male occupants posed risks for smaller female occupants. Yet for decades automakers continued to use only dummies modeled after the average American male.
Smaller women are three times as likely as an average-sized male driver to be seriously injured in an accident, according to a recent opinion piece in Automotive News by Lee Jared Vinsel, assistant professor of science and technology studies at the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, N.J. Vinsel notes that front airbags are designed to strike occupants in the chest when they deploy, but smaller individuals can be hit in the chin instead, resulting in head and neck injuries.
Meanwhile, automakers have maintained that the average-sized test dummy is applicable to 95 percent of the driving population, and that the development of a smaller dummy would be too time-consuming and costly. Under the new requirements, car companies must use small female crash dummies in front collision evaluations for 2011 model-year vehicles and beyond. Vinsel says the long-overdue introduction of female-proportioned dummies “is the product of a long-held cultural resistance to considering gender differences in design.”
Allstate says that Americans tend to be involved in a collision once every 10 years. Not surprisingly, the cities that scored better than that average tended to be smaller ones. Here are the top five, in reverse order:
5. Lincoln, Nebraska (12.4 years between accidents)
4. Madison, Wisconsin (13 years between accidents)
3. Fort Collins, Colorado (13.6 years between accidents)
2. Boise, Idaho (13.8 years between accidents)
1. Sioux Falls, South Dakota (13.8 years between accidents)
Compare those stats to those of drivers in the safest big cities (i.e. those with over 1,000,000 residents), and you'll notice a steep drop-off:
5. Houston, Texas (7.9 years between accidents)
4. Chicago, Illinois (7.9 years between accidents)
3. San Antonio, Texas (8.3 years between accidents)
2. San Diego, California (8.8 years between accidents)
1. Phoenix, Arizona (10.2 years between accidents)