| Traffic |

Ten Things Miami's Terrible Drivers Need to Learn

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Miami and help keep the future of New Times free.

Miami is notorious for its bad drivers. We know that it would be futile to try and teach you (yes, you) about things like the "speed limit" and that there is a difference between a yellow light and a freshly turned green light, but we figured someone should at least give you assholes a bit of a refresher course. Perhaps you've merely forgotten some things since you took your driver's license test (assuming you ever did take one), so here, have a quick refresher course.

1. You have something on the side of your steering wheel that looks like this:

It's called a turning signal switch. When activated, it will make lights on either side of your car blink like this:

You activate these "blinkers" as they're called to inform your fellow motorists of your intention to change lanes or make a turn. Sure, we understand sometimes it may seem silly, like when you're in a clearly marked turning lane, but they do come in handy for things like four-way stops, changing lanes on the interstate, and when you're speeding through a yellow light like a bat out of hell while making a left turn. Try to at least familiarize yourself with them.

Let this dog be your guide:

2. That arrangement of white stripes painted on the road is a crosswalk. That yellow diamond is a yield sign.

If you see a person walking through one of these as you are about to drive through, YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO STOP AND LET THEM PASS. This does not mean speed up in order to beat the pedestrian before he enters your lane (we have seen this a few times when people literally in wheelchairs and walkers are crossing roads). This does not mean honk at or flip off the pedestrian. This does not mean completely ignore it. This means stop your car and avoid hitting another human being.

3. This is an open road

Unless your are in heavy traffic or come to a yield sign, stop sign or stop light, the general idea is that you are supposed to keep your car moving on it. This means you shouldn't stop in it, put your blinkers on, and run in to get your dry cleaning. This means you shouldn't wait outside to pick up your friend. This means you shouldn't stop to roll down your window and cat call girls. Generally no one minds when you do these things, say, on a lightly trafficked side street, but we've seen some of ya'll attempt this on streets like Biscayne Boulevard and Alton Road. Stop that. Err actually that's not clear. Stop stopping where you shouldn't ... or occasionally even parking.

4. This is a four way stop.

When multiple cars are at the intersection at the same time, many Miamians seems to abide by the rule of "whoever has the balls to make the first move gets the right of way." This is not actually true. The law is the driver to the left gets the right of way.

5. This is a busy intersection.

Notice how I've pointed out that the there is an exit from a business's parking lot (in this case a Taco Bell) near this intersection. Some of y'all seem to be under the impression that it is perfectly legal to make a left out of this parking lot while cutting across four congested lanes of traffic. This is not the case. Either navigate backroads until you can make a proper left turn, or take a right and make a U-turn later.

If you find yourself in one of those congested lanes of traffic that some asshole is trying to cut across, please honk at them and flip them off.

6. This is a turning lane.

Only enter these lanes if you intend to make a turn in the indicated direction. If a lane you're traveling in suddenly turns into a turning line (there's usually signs to warn you) get out in a timely manner. Do not use the turning lane to pass other cars and assume you'll sneak your way back into the through lane right before the turn. You are an asshole if you attempt this.

7. If you attempt to get off a highway exit here, you are an asshole.

Actually if you attempt to cut off people in a crowded exit lane just to avoid waiting in that lane, you are an asshole, but if you do it here you are, to paraphrase Eric Cartman, a mega super king kamehameha asshole.

8. This is your steering wheel.

This is your phone.

When you should have your hands on the former, keep your hands off the later.

9. This is tailgating and it is against the law.

Generally you are supposed to leave about a car's length between you and the car driving in front of you. No, I don't mean Matchbox Car's length, which is a rule some of you seem to practice. At the very least leave a Smart Car spot.

On a related note, if you see a car following a car's length behind another car, that is not an invitation for you to change lanes into that space without a blinker.

To sum it up:

10. To bring it all full circle, this is a blinker.

If a person in front of you is trying to change into your lane and isn't being an asshole about it, let them. The blinker does not mean "speed up so this person can't change lanes."

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes.

Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.