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Friday, May 25, 2012

DRIVING ON THE RIGHT

DRIVING ON THE RIGHT


In the USA we drive on the right side of the road.  About 75% of the world drives on the right side of the road and 25% drives on the left side of the road.  Most British countries or countries that were formally colonies of the UK drive on the left side of the road.

WHY?

In days gone by, riding on horseback, you would want to approach another rider to the left so you could hold the reins with your left hand and greet the other rider with your right hand (the traditional greeting hand) or hack off his head with your sword (traditionally held in the right hand.)

SO WHY DRIVE ON THE RIGHT?

Most countries drive on the right side of the road.  Are they left handed countries?  No.  Apparently when travel moved to carriages, or especially heavy wagons, drivers sat on the left of the wagon so they could more effectively use the whip with their right hand.  Drivers preferred to drive on the right so they could see down the road.  This made head hacking more difficult.  Hey, you can’t have everything.

Countries had to decide on horse whipping (right side driving) or head hacking (left side driving.)  Most countries chose whipping over head-hacking.  

Countries in the UK stayed on the left because the UK is tradition driven.  Stiff upper lip, left hand on the whip.   

In today’s multinational economy, automobile companies have to make cars with steering on the left for 75% of the world and steering on the right for the other 25%.  This cannot be cost effective.  Driving while visiting a right side country from a left side country cannot be safe. 

Why don’t countries just come together and decide to all drive on the same side of the road?

Why don’t all countries decide to use the same weights and measure systems?

Please….

Politicians are always preaching fair trade and World peace.

SHIT…we can’t even agree to drive on the same side of the road.

12 comments:

  1. They spent most of my fourth grade year teaching us the metric system, certain that the U.S. would move to it.

    Have we?

    The only thing I know anymore is the two-liter bottle. :-)

    Pearl

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  2. My boys certainly came unstuck for a little while when we moved here, at school...I remember Henry saying to me "Mum, there are 12 inches in a foot aren't there?" - he had a maths assessment and in the UK was taught mainly metric measures - so was unsure that he had answered correctly with the imperial stuff...

    Also the whole left and right thing...In England a huntsman walks his dog on his left and has his shot gun in his right - so I think the whole thing about the left side is probably solely based on dark stuff like being prepared to kill ones enemy....lol

    I do agree though - we should all agree and drive on the same side of the road...Somehow I think the UK will stand firm though to prevent themselves from having to redo all the signage for the country!

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  3. Maybe it's somehow tied to that Tower of Babel thing.

    So "head hacking" is the forerunner of today's ever popular "road rage"?

    S

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  4. What? Next you'll be wanting to promote world peace Cranky!

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  5. Head hacking? I think that's a game my son plays on his XBOX.

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  6. I am becoming more and more enamored with your writing. Luv ya'

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  7. Is it right to be proud of the fact that I am both a head-hacker and a horsewhipper? Of course I mean that I can drive on both sides of the road, just not at the same time, unless I've had one too many wines...and I wouldn't drive then...oh never mind.

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  8. Apparently the UK considered changing from right to left when Sweden did many years ago. It would be impossible to do now -- all the motorway exits would have to be redone. The reason they didn't do it when Sweden did was because of the buses! To much to replace all the old buses -- which would have had to let people on and off in the middle of the road!

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  9. We'll start driving on the right when you start using the metric system. Deal? x

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  10. Love what Maxabella said.

    High school maths made me very glad to be an Aussie. One day, American teenagers will rebel and refuse to learn imperial anymore, demanding the more straightforward metric system along with more hot dogs on the canteen menu.

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  11. Lol!!! I'm all for the head hacking. And I second (third) the motion on what Maxabella said!
    Get with the program and start using metres and kilos...please !

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