JUST what is the problem with Bay of Plenty drivers?
Why do such a large number of those behind the wheel feel that it is okay to speed inappropriately, tailgate, not indicate, be impatient, or drive in a dangerous fashion.
I'll add to the list those who drive off before they have fastened their seat belts. These silly people - of all ages - pull out to beat a line of traffic only to have to slow to click into their belts and force everyone following to brake.
On the issue of speeding inappropriately, that's not doing 105km/h on the open road. I am pointing the finger at those who plant the foot in an area where they have little room for error - such as near schools, shops, day-care centres and parked cars.
I have seen so many youths and women speeding near both Te Akau Ki Primary and Tahatai Coast schools that it boggles the mind. How a mother can drop off her kid/kids and then speed off somewhere with no thought for other children's safety escapes me.
As do drivers who text while at the wheel.
I have seen a lot of them on Tauranga roads and the news that nearly 350 cellphone infringement notices were issued in the year to June 30, 2012, stuns me.
And the reason I am gobsmacked is that I would see 350 people texting while driving every month!
Now these twits think they are such good drivers they can keep their eyes off the road for lengthy periods while driving.
But the road was empty, I hear them trying to excuse themselves.
No, the only empty thing was your skulls, I say.
For if you text you are 23 times more likely to crash than if you are concentrating on the road around you, according to a study by America's Virginia Tech Transportation Institute.
The institute spent 18 months investigating the problem by using video cameras in vehicles and discovered that drivers would look away from where they were heading for five seconds while texting.
It is easy to see why the habit is so dangerous because a car can travel the length of a football field in that time.
The social cost of a road crash or a road injury is hard to believe.
Authorities say the cost of accidents are: $3.67 million per fatality, $390,400 per serious injury, $20,700 per minor injury.
These estimates include loss of life and life quality, loss of output due to temporary incapacitation, medical costs, legal costs and property damage costs.
Clearly our boys and girls in blue need to have a lengthy campaign handing out $100 infringement notices and 20 demerit points to unthinking texting drivers.
And with the numbers of people not wearing seatbelts rising - from 1758 to 2266 - then it wouldn't hurt to have a no-tolerance policy with those morons as well and start biffing out $150 fines without mercy.
Our roads are dangerous enough already without letting cretins get away with such antics.
OH DEAR God, top public slurpants are now not only wanting massive salaries - they are trying to be poets and TV commentators as well.
Take Ministry for Primary Industries director-general Wayne McNee, who was announcing funding approval to beef up the marbled beef industry.
As he was gleaming with pride over the $11 million, seven-year programme he waxed lyrical enough to be a host on the Food Channel.
"The programme aims to put New Zealand marbled beef 'centre of the plate' in much the same way as New Zealand lamb is in key international markets."
Okay, so far I wasn't up-chucking. Then he said:
"We want foodies to actively seek out New Zealand marbled beef because it consistently delivers on taste and tenderness and embodies consumer beliefs and lifestyles."
Embodies consumer beliefs and lifestyles?
Oh pewwwkkkkkk. Bring back Hudson and Halls.