Drivers need to pay attention
I am writing this letter to call attention to an extremely dangerous driving trend that I have been seeing more and more frequently here on Yuma roads. What I’m referring to is people wishing to make a left turn (where there isn’t a center turn lane) who, instead of taking the time to find a proper and legal way to make the turn, cross over the double yellow line (which is illegal in itself) and pull into the "left turn only" lane of oncoming traffic to make their illegal left turn.
The latest incident marks the ninth time this winter that I was almost hit head-on by yet another idiot pulling this bone-headed move. I was headed southbound on 4th Avenue in the left lane. I was planning to make a left turn onto 28th Street, and as I approached the intersection I began to move into the left-only turn lane. Just as I pulled into the turn lane, an oncoming vehicle from the northbound side of the road crossed the double yellow line and pulled directly in my path in an attempt to turn left into a parking lot. If I didn’t have anti-lock brakes, I would surely have hit him head-on. Then, in an even more unbelievable act, the driver of the other car (complete with Washington plates) began waving his hands in a furious gesture in what I can only assume was an effort to convey to me that he was angry with me for blocking HIS path! What’s even more infuriating about this particular incident is that the other driver could just as easily have turned left on 28th and pulled safely into the same parking lot that he had just nearly killed me trying to reach.
Now, I’m not trying to pick on snowbirds, but the fact of the matter is that each of the nine times this has happened to me this winter, the other driver was a senior citizen with Northwest/Canadian plates — and most were driving gigantic pickup trucks (adding an additional level of danger to an already dangerous act). Also, I’ve never had this happen to me in the summer, but I have witnessed it occasionally during the "off-season" on Fortuna Road where people are making this illegal move turning into the new Fry’s parking lot.
The bottom line here folks is that we ALL need to pay attention, drive carefully, courteously and safely — and obey ALL the laws that were put into place for EVERYONE’s safety (even when we don’t think anyone is looking!).