After a few weeks of driving in CA, I’ve seen more accidents than I see in months of driving on the east coast.
I’m not sure what the reason is. There is certainly a lot more traffic, but the roads are bigger to compensate. It seems people are just more reckless. Examples of weird traffic incidents:
- (Morning) A car is completely stopped in in the middle of a freeway, causing a big traffic mess as people try to route around it.
- (Morning) A car has skidded off the freeway into a steep ditch, becoming engulfed in bushes. Supposedly this car had a person in it and it took police days to notice it, so there were a few police cars and traffic was bad.
- (Morning) A truck’s doors flew open and the contents scattered everywhere on the freeway. Unbelievably, the owner of the truck was on the side of the road, making mad dashes into the freeway to collect his dropped stuff.
- (Afternoon) A truck crashed badly on a long, curvy exit ramp. Two lanes of traffic had to be shut down and it took almost half an hour to get off the ramp.
- (Afternoon) A “generic” accident involving three or four cars held up traffic as we left a movie theater.
- (Afternoon) On the same trip as above, we saw an accident in progress – a car swerved from the rightmost lane of the freeway, and headed left horizontally into (I’m assuming) the concrete barrier. I didn’t see the whole thing as we were driving in the opposite direction.
- (Afternoon) On “bike to work day,” a biker was pedaling alongside the freeway. He was on the breakdown lane, but when an exit ramp came up, he simply pedaled into the freeway. This was extremely stupid, and I almost hit the guy trying to merge. It’s not easy to merge when there’s someone on a bicycle in front of you traveling a fraction of your speed.
Then again, maybe it’s just me. The family I’m staying with contends they haven’t seen stuff like this very often, and since a few of the incidents happened with us traveling together, I’ve become a bad luck charm for cars.
I wouldn’t care except, the frequency of these incidents means I have to allocate thirty minutes extra into my driving time. Traffic in San Jose isn’t as bad as Los Angeles, but it’s pretty slow during rush hours.