By Jerry Roker
For Bahamas Press
It seems to matter little when police and road safety officials appeal to the motoring public to exercise caution on our roads as reckless, aggressive and hostile attitudes by too many drivers and motorcycle riders actually increases in the lead-up to most holidays here in The Bahamas.
It also seems to matter little that, although this subject has been dealt with by many in recent years, the road safety issue remains a disturbing factor as vehicles of all types are often seen travelling at excessive speeds, causing others to take evasive action to avoid a mishap.
Making this even more crucial is that emergency vehicles that are expected to travel outside of the speed limit are challenged by some motorists, who appear reluctant to follow traffic rules.
This is a form of madness on our roads that at least appears unstoppable, and almost out of control. Despite pleas about that dreaded third lane, used mainly by motorcycles, one would think each rider has a GPS system to guide them through heavy traffic moving both ways. Of particular concern, are the motor cyclists who ply through our streets on one wheel. Something must be done to stop this silly, but very dangerous practice.
It amounts to a type of Russian roulette, as each motorist tries to guess what the next person is likely to do in tight situations — and that is an everyday occurrence. It is very doubtful that the mindset of some motorists will change to a degree, where safety by all road users becomes reality rather than wishful thinking.
Not a single day goes by without someone, no matter what type of vehicle, being observed overtaking on a curve where vision is limited, with no regard for others. In fact, this has become the norm for those who feel above rules and the law. Some motorists trying to adhere to basic safety rules come in for obscene comments and verbal abuse for simply trying to obey the law.
On the other hand, it could be detrimental to this generation, and the next, to ignore dangers that tear away values that threaten a healthy society. Our legislators need to home in on these public concerns with more vigour, rather than exert so much energy going after each other’s throats, for whatever advantage.
We have seniors who have seen changes in our Bahamas over the years and who have witnessed progress in many areas. But at the same time they have noted that lifestyle changes and attitudes should be a concern for all. Most would probably agree that the subject of disrespect for rules and the law is never pleasant.
The Bahamas must have rules and laws designed to protect every citizen who aspires to live peacefully and to share in the amenities of our Island home.
Our roads need to be made safer and there is little sign that any real change will happen overnight.
But if we choose to look the other way whenever something happens, the traffic madness will continue with negative results.
If one person reads this and decides to pull back with speed and overtaking while driving or riding, then these few words will not be in vain.