Some drivers need to learn patience or park their cars

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I don’t write a lot of bylined columns, but this week I was compelled to comment on something this community laments about on a regular basis – traffic.

However, I am not decrying long waits coming down Cochrane Hill or Highway 22 out of Sunset, nor am I complaining about single-access communities. No. My beef is with reckless, impatient and dangerous driving that is putting people at risk.

While I appreciate my aforementioned problems with traffic in this community are a factor in the frustrations that might be causing bad driving habits, there is no excuse for much of the behaviour I have observed.

Every day, I walk my stepson to and from school. The trip is a short one from our home on Quigley Drive to Glenbow School. But between us and our destination is Highway 22, an approximately 20-metre crossing that fills me with dread.

Not a day goes by that I do not witness near rear collisions, vehicles speeding through red lights, cars cutting pedestrians off in the cross walk or dangerously turning towards them to rush them through their crossing.

Many times, I have had to pull my stepson back to protect him from drivers who obviously have put the blinders on and have not a single care for those around them. The number of people I see honking and screaming at incidents that were clearly their fault is mind blowing.

It is hard to imagine many of the drivers along this stretch of road ever took a defensive driving course or even skimmed the driver’s manual before being issued their licence.

I also now understand why, in an area flanked by three schools, I see so few people walking. The reckless motorists that seem to be the norm here probably terrify them.

It is time to slow down, pay attention and take a breath, otherwise it is not a matter of if but when tragedy will strike and that will immeasurably destroy the lives of the person behind the wheel and the family who must bury a loved one.

When that happens, no one is going to care that you were frustrated by long traffic delays.

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About Author

Chris Puglia

Chris is a SAIT-trained journalist with more than 20 years of experience. He began his career in central Alberta working in Olds and Carstairs. After four years at Newspapers in Alberta, he headed north to Yellowknife and spent 12 years working in both the Northwest Territories and Nunavut. In 2014, he returned to Alberta and began working for Great West Newspapers at the St. Albert Gazette before taking the editorial helm of the Cochrane Eagle in 2016. Chris welcomes feedback from the public - good or bad - and encourages readers to contact him with concerns or story ideas.