EVERY time I see a P-plater on the road, I instinctively slow down and give them plenty of space because I realise that they are usually not yet experienced drivers.
So when I see a P-plate driver exceeding the speed limit and flying past me on the highway or doing stupid things like talking on a mobile phone while driving or doing burnouts in the city streets, I shudder, because I don’t really believe they have full control of that vehicle.
I don’t want to sound like an old fart up on my high and mighty horse. I remember having a few minor crashes and doing some stupid things in cars when I was younger too. I have been in a car that rolled and it was a very scary experience.
I have also lost a few friends in car accidents too. So I know the pain that such accidents can cause to the families involved as well as just the tragic waste of a young life that it is.
So – the message is that cars are not toys. They can be lethal machines. The trouble with being young is that sometimes you think you are “invincible” or that you are over-confident in your abilities.
Add alcohol to this mix and the effects can just be disastrous. And while you think that the big burnout you just did may impress the chicks or your mates – it is just really saying: “look at me – I am a big idiot.” I read recently in the Goulburn Post that local police are cracking down on hoon behaviour such as burnouts and I think this is great. The story quoted Inspector Evan Quarmby as saying: “The practice can endanger the lives of innocent bystanders and other road users.” Too right they can and good on the cops for cracking down on it - even if it means impounding the vehicles. Some may say this is a bit “heavy handed” but let’s face it – it is a great deterrent to this type of behaviour. A young person’s car is often their pride and joy, their first significant purchase or bit of property that they own, so removing it from them sends a clear message that this stupid and dangerous behaviour won’t be tolerated by society.
There is also the embarrassment involved in having to explain to their parents or friends where the car is. Hopefully the parents will let the young person pay off the impoundment fee and not bail them out, just to reinforce the message.
A RECENT photo in the Post showed a lot of mattresses being dumped in the bush around the tip. That $40 fee for taking mattresses to the tip is just too steep and this is what happens. Thanks should go to Cr Robin Saville for at least making an effort to reduce this cost for pensioners, but further consideration in reducing this fee would be appreciated by all ratepayers, I am sure.