Saturday, 17 May 2014

Time to cut off the roadworks queue-jumpers

It is a quintessentially British thing to get so wonderfully infuriated by queue-jumpers.  So why do we accept such shoddy behaviour, which would never for a moment be permissible in a queue of pedestrians, on the road?

The diagram above details a very common scenario on Britain's highways.  When roadworks are being done on a dual carriageway road, and one of the lanes is therefore closed after a certain point, most people are sensible enough to get themselves into the correct lane nice and early (these lane closures are usually signposted from up to two miles back, so there's ample time to prepare).

However, there are always a few impatient, discourteous, uncivilised drivers about.  These are the people who dress like estate agents and drive Audi A6 Estates, or BMW 1 Series.  (It has long been an ambition of mine to find these men who drive 1 Series and tell them, in the style of Tom Baker in Blackadder: "you drive a woman's BMW, my lord!"  …but that's another topic entirely.)

The car in the right-hand lane in my diagram is one such driver.  He knows that the right-hand lane is soon going to be closed off - and he knows that this is why the majority of cars are pulling over into the left-hand lane.  But he sees an opportunity to overtake a few cars, so he pulls out into the right-hand lane, accelerates to 80mph, and races down to the very point at which it is no longer possible to drive any further without pulling over to the left again - then he flicks his indicator on and waits for somebody in the queue of traffic to let him in.

He gains relatively little from his reckless, insufferable rudeness - but other drivers, who have had the sense to move into the left-hand lane early, end up having to let him in ahead of themselves, thus inflating his ego and encouraging more of this uncouth behaviour.

Well, I say no more!  We, as a nation, must tolerate this sort of thing no longer!  We should not allow roadworks queue-jumpers the satisfaction of thinking they have stolen a march on the rest of us - leave them sitting at the point where the traffic cones bar their way, and do not let them back in.  They will soon learn.

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