Recently on a soccer road trip to the central coast I received a speeding ticket. My first ticket in maybe 25 years. I opted to attend Traffic School to avoid the point on my record. A lot has changed since I was first licensed in 1973. I learned that you no longer hold the steering wheel in the 10 and 2 positions. Today we are instructed to hold the steering wheel in the 8 and 4 positions. Why? Airbags. When they explode they cause less collateral damage to your arms when your hands are in the 10 and 2 positions.

I also learned that hand over hand stirring is no longer the correct way to turn the steering wheel. Now the correct way to turn the steering wheel is hand under hand, at the bottom of the steering wheel. Again, airbags. It is no longer important to turn the steering wheel in the most efficient manner. It is more important to avoid the collateral damage caused by airbags, even though you might avoid the accident all together if 10 & 2 positioning and hand over hand steering were used.

In addition, I learned that it was better to pull through a parking space to the one ahead of it. Again, when I learned to drive you were never suppose to pull ahead to the space in front of the space you were entering. After all it is in the next parking lane. You always backed your car out of the space. Apparently it is now safer to go forward out of a parking space then it is to back out of a parking space. My thinking and personal observations are that drivers have become so rude and impatient that backing out is a more difficult task then pulling forward. Pulling forward you are better able to see cars that are backing out and avoid cars that are unwilling to yield to a vehicle backing out.

It seems that behaviors that were once thought to be the safest and most prudent are no longer such. Other behaviors that were thought to be unsafe and not prudent are now the status quo. I guess that as we evolve and change as a society are norms do as well.



This article(s) represents the views and opinions of Garrett Parkinson and not the Insurance Companies that he represents or illustrates in his articles.