City or state with the worst drivers

Until a month ago I would have said, hands down, Boston (along with the rest of Massachusetts) has the worst drivers in the land. Anywhere you go in New England if you see somebody driving like a madman, you can bet he has Massachusetts plates. And if he doesn’t, he’s probably a transplant. My uncle, who used to work in Boston, told me never, ever, to use my turn signal indicators in Massachusetts. “They take it as a sign of weakness and use it against you.”

Now I’m not so sure Massachusetts has the worst. I spent a few hours in St. Cloud and Elk River, Minnesota a few weeks ago. Good Grief! I’ve never seen so many idiotic drivers in my life. And the strange thing is that in all the times I’ve been to Duluth (only a few hours away) I never noticed any bad drivers there. In fact, they’re more patient and considerate than what I’m used to.

What city do you think has the worst drivers?

Karachi. I swear, I’ve never seen anything like it, and I’ve seen (and done) some pretty aggressive driving in my life.

First, the concept of a horn is different there. It isn’t used to alert another car in the case of an emergency; it’s used to let other cars know you’re coming, so you use it at every corner you come to to, especially when you’re running full bore through a red, which is pretty much always.

I don’t know why they paint lines on the concrete, because if there are two lanes, you will always find four cars across.

Even the concept of one side of the road for each direction of traffic is a joke. People regularly drive or pass into oncoming traffic during heavy times. There was once where I was on a road with one lane in each direction, and for both directions someone was passing. Everybody honked, the outside ones went partially off the road, and the inside ones were in each others lanes. It was wild.

There are lots of motorcycles. And it’s not uncommon to see a husband, wife and two or three kids on the motorcycle.

Oh and you see occasional camels and donkeys with carts on the road, which make it that much more exciting.

Still has got to be Boston - they keep changing the streets and you can’t get to the same place the same way two weeks in a row. Boston creates fanatics. I think Bostonians also hold that “Make Way for Ducklings” book against everyone in the US and each other: they make way for no man, woman, car, or duck.

hmmm…
For general driver crappiness, the Maryland/Baltimore/DC area might make a claim for the title.

In addition to the obnoxious habit of not paying attention while driving (we’re talking about reading a magazine propped up on the steering wheel, applying make-up, shaving, playing a trumpet -seriously-- and all this while driving on the BELTWAY for Chrissake) drivers in this area are generally reputed for not knowing the rules of the road.

Turn signals are applied when a driver is actually making a turn. The left hand lane is cheerfully used for cruising rather than passing only. Maintaining a proper following distance is practically unheard of.

Here’s another annoying custom. You’re at a traffic light, the driver in front of you obviously had wanted to be in the left-turn lane and discovers this too late. Instead of driving the extra block down the road and pulling a U-ee, most of these morons will simply wait for their chance and in doing so, pay no mind to the traffic they are tying up the traffic behind them. I don’t know how many times I have seen this. Oh, that and the idiots who are trying to exit the beltway, realize that they are on the wrong exit ramp, and simply throw the car in reverse, oblivious to the cars speeding past them at 65 -75 mph.

IMHO, us Bostonians aren’t bad drivers; we just drive different. It works incredibly well here. The problems arise when we drive like Bostonians when we’re somewhere else.

And what do changes to the streets have to do with whether drivers are good or bad? Confusing, yes. But Boston was confusing to newbies without frequent changes before the Big Dig, and it’ll probably be confusing to newbies without frequent changes when (if ever) the Big Dig ends. Once you know the right lanes to be in, trafiic flows quickly and efficiently.

I’ve driven in L.A. rush hour (oxymoron) traffic. (Very slow and miserable.) I’ve driven in New York City. (Take two right turns, then a left, cross a bridge, take a tunnel, bear to the right, get flipped off my a cabbie, flip off a cabbie, circle Central Park—now you’re two blocks further than when you started.) But the worst I’ve ever encountered was Chicago. Every day, for at least two hours, you creep along two feet, stop, creep another two feet, stop, etc., and they charge a toll for the right to do that! I saw two rear-end collisions in the space of a mile, and traffic wasn’t even moving. Evidently the drivers just said, “I’ve had it! I’m gonna ram something!” I asked a driver next to me if he did this every day. He said he did, but that it was worse in winter.

Still, I like Chicago.

“Worst” is hard to quantify, but I can tell you this: drivers in New Mexico are insane, but it’s a controlled insanity. At least they know when the weather’s so bad that they need to either be careful or stay home.

Lubbock (where I live now) has decent drivers in general, but they do NOT adjust for bad weather. All it takes is a little sheet of rain, and there’ll be 20 accidents, instantly. And I am not exaggerating.

You do not know bad drivers until you come to central florida
why:

  1. Lots of old people
  2. tourists in SUVs
  3. International tourists in SUVs
  4. Rain
  5. interstates to get anywhere
  6. untrained cops

I don’t go near the disney area unless I’m in my crappies car. I love japanese tourist with a van full of kids pulling out in front of me. But have learned how to drive while on vacation.

Central FLorida is uncontestable the worst!

If we are talking about the US it has got to be Boston. In the span one day last week I saw three people pull a U turn in the middle of the highway…over a frickin’ median. I saw a Cadillac try to ease its way into traffic by pushing the car in front of it forward via the bumpers. And to top it all off a crazy 6’6" bald man, who eerily resembled that WWF wrestler back in the day who used to eat the turnbuckles (George the Animal Steele???), stopped his car in the middle of a traffic jam and attempted to tip over my car simply because he thought I had given him the finger when I had actually been pointing out the Big Dig to my friends.

Egypt however has to take the cake. Does anyone want to guess what the one part of the Egyptian car that is required to be fully functional is?

The horn. No brakes? That’s ok. Just slam on that horn as you coast threw the intersection.

Traffic incidents are resolved there by the two parties getting out of the cars and looking at the damage. If nothing is on fire and nobody has died, the the offending party hands over a cigarrette.

Goldsboro, North Carolina. It has the biggest combination of rednecks, speed demons, eighteen-wheelers, and farm equipment on its roads that you’ll ever see.

The New Jersey Turnpike is bad too, but the biggest problem is that a lot of stupid people drive that road.

Boston has the worst drivers of any city, but TX has the worst in any state.

When I lived in MA I didn’t think that ANYONE had worse drivers, until I moved here. TX drivers pick a lane and STAY in it. They don’t signal, they slow down for no apparent reason, and they wouldn’t change lanes if their lives depended on it. Passing on the inside is a sort of sport here.

MI has the best drivers. They scoot! It’s too bad the entire state is a construction zone all summer. I696 is like a F1 race course when the conditions are good, and people drive it’s like one! They have a 70mph speed limit but you won’t get pulled over unless you’re going at least 80. That means everyone drives 90.

In my experience Boston has the worst drivers. To be honest, I’ve never driven in Texas or Karachi. I have driven in DC and Maryland, and I grew up near the NJ Turnpike. Boston beats all of those hands down. LA gets a bad reputation because there are so many people that you see extreme behavior from the ends of the bell curve. But in LA they WILL let you on when you try to merge, and they will let you get off at your exit. In Boston they’d run into you before yielding in either situation.

Well during my time in the US I found LA drivers far worse than Boston drivers.

Down under the worst city (statistically speaking per capita) is Toowoomba, Qld. And anyone who’s ever driven there will agree wholeheartedly.

Worst in the world though I’d have to award to Rome. I was nearly run over in the first hour I was there by a ferrari shooting a red late. It was so late I’d have to say he wasn’t even looking.

Tip for travellers: when in Rome ignore crossings: only cross in the middle of blocks. That way you only have to look two ways and vastly improve your chances of survival.

Nah…
Done the Boston thing.
Used to drive in rush hour there for years. They ARE super aggressive drivers, but I always thought people knew what they were doing. As has been said, with the insane road layout you kinda have to be aggressive there to survive.

Take a drive through Kansas City sometime. Now there you’ll see some notoriously bad driving.
In Boston, you’ll have people who are driving to “win”, to get to work first it would seem. In KC the roads are more logical and there’s far less traffic yet there’s a lot more to worry about. People don’t seem to be paying attention.

In Boston you wouldn’t use the blinker because people wouldn’t let you in. In KC it would seem people don’t use the blinker because… they forgot they were turning maybe?

I’ve looked for a website where there would be statistics for worst/best drivers but have found none.

BTW, KC also has a ridiculously high murder rate for a town this small.

rah rah. go chiefs.

First, they drive no less than 20 over the limit. Then, are they rude. My God are they rude. I travel on I-94 outside of Milwaukee, WI. about 6 days a week. Speed limit is 65. I have a Valentine 1 radar detector, A beartracker chips detector, and a c.b radio. I have on good authority that state patrol writes at 76. So I go 84 figuring my 3 electronic buddies will warn me in time so I can slow down 8 miles an hour. Every car with an Illinois plate flies by me like I’m standing still! 84mph and they pass me and disapear into the horizon! I know my speedo is correct, I check it with the radar display boards the cops have set up.
The speed doesn’t get me as much as the rudeness! 84mph and they flip me off because I wasn’t going fast enough for them!
Have any of you ever driven in Fib land? I was going almost 90 on I-88…I wasn’t passing anybody! A “special ed” van full of kids passed me! Those people are fucking nuts!!!

Having driven in NYC, Boston, Atlanta, Chicago, Toronto, Montreal, Providence, St. Louis, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, Washington DC, Milwaukee, and various other cities and numerous rural areas as basis of comparison, I must say Cincinnati, Ohio has the hands down worst drivers of any city, state, or province that I have driven in in North America.

This is not mere hometown pride, I am not from Ohio. Nor is it out of spite, I find it to be a lovely city and their Art Museum is quite nice. I have visited there a few times on business and each time I rented a car and drove around. In comparison Bostonian are calm, sane, safe, and polite drivers.

Well, I’m with Tubagirl. Central Florida tourism attracts the worst drivers from Boston, Goldsboro, Cincinatti, Egypt, and anywhere else and concentrates them here in our little part of the state…one of the side-effects of having tourism as a major industry in our fair state. Note, I’m not griping about the tourists themselves, just their driving.

The worst drivers I’ve run across in my travels are right here in Southern California. Or maybe that’s just 'cause I live here now. Kind of a ‘grass is always greener’ thing.

The reasons for our horrible drivers are many. We have no public transportation to speak of, so we all have to get out there. Very dog eat dog. Many of us are surly and heavily armed. Still more are heavily intoxicated. All have necks made of rubber to take in all the action and to spot the news helicopters. All are frustrated by a freeway system designed by the Marquis de Sade.

And don’t get me started on the traffic cops…

I have to agree with spooje. SoCal has some pretty bad drivers around here–and it only gets worse when it finally rains. No one around here ever remembers how to drive when the roads are slick–they still rip down the road at 80 mph when it’s pouring.

The scariest part is driving the last 10 miles or so of the 110–it was built around 1940, when cars were not expected to go over 60 mph on a highway. The exits are very abrupt, and have a limit of 5 mph–the entrances are just as bad. I have seen more accidents on that stretch of road in the past 4 months than I have in a lifetime.

New Jersey has some pretty bad drivers. And they all seemed to be attracted to my general location. Northern California looks to hold promise for ranking up there with half-wit motorists as well.