The Dirty Dozen: The 12 Worst Sri Lankan Driving Habits

Sri Lanka is notorious for its poor driving. Given the fact that we encounter a high level of road rage, it seemed appropriate that we list out the worst driving habits of our fellow Sri Lankan drivers:

1. Going too slowly…on the highway: Yes, we have highways and that is excellent. However, there are a number of individuals who go too slow-say travelling at 50kmph when the speed is as high as 100kmph. If you are one of those who goes too slowly, move towards the left lane. 

slow lane

2. Driving on the wrong lane: Speaking of lanes, there are too many vehicles which I encounter which travel on the wrong lane. If you are one of them, hear this: The left lane is for slower drivers, while the right lane is for those who want to go faster.

3. Disrespecting road rules: A classic example is disregarding the pedestrian crossing. A lot of drivers don’t stop as they are supposed to. Yes, the drivers will respond saying that pedestrians usually ‘jump from nowhere’, but they are allowed to cross the road using the pedestrian crossing. So be aware.

4. Using Mobiles & driving: As we have mentioned earlier, this is very dangerous, since a moment’s distraction is all that’s necessary in order to cause a collision. If you must take or receive an important call, move your car to the side and take the call.

phone while driving

5. Using the wrong turn signal: One of the most basic things to do, and yet you’ve likely come upon this scenario: drivers who are about to turn left, have their indicators lit up in the other direction (even when they can’t turn right!). While this may be quite amusing to some, it slows down the vehicle behind as it creates uncertainty, because the driver up front seemingly doesn’t appear to know what they are doing.

6. Drifting in and out of lanes: Probably the most annoying on the list. Some drivers cant seem to decide on which lane they want to stay on, and frequently keep changing lanes by swerving to the left or the right. This makes it difficult sometimes as motorists want to drive normally and shouldn’t have to worry about getting involved in a side on collision.

7. Reversing onto the main road: If you’ve ever had to park in a shop or restaurant which is on the main road, you know nerve-wracking this feels. You need to reverse and manoeuvre carefully as you do your best to avoid hitting another car, or pedestrian.

8. Inconvenient parking: You need to park somewhere quickly, unfortunately the closest parking spot has been taken in a very poor fashion (see pic below). If this is you, breathe.  We’ve all been there at least once. Please learn how to park in a convenient place and it’ll help everyone.poor parking

9. Too many people in a vehicle: This is more likely to happen if the vehicle is a three-wheeler/tuk tuk or a motorcycle. I understand that people want to save the cost of transportation, but surely that shouldn’t be at the expense of someone’s life?

10. Large vehicles on narrow roads: Narrow ‘side’ roads are frequently used as shortcuts by a number of drivers. However, the moment a large vehicle such as a bus, truck or even a car comes along, there is no way a second vehicle can go through.

no helmets

11. No helmets: This one is for all the motorcyclists who don’t use helmets: it’s a terrible idea. You are risking serious injury if you don’t have one on you and a road accident were to happen. Furthermore, there are children who travel without a helmet: Surely if you are a responsible parent,  keeping your children safe should be a priority.

12. Driving through yellow lights: Rarely a day hour goes by when this does not happen. All types of motorists seem to view the yellow light as ‘go’ and jam their foot on the accelerator. It’s not a safe thing to do, and even though it may cost you a little time in traffic, it’s better to get there late than to not get there at all.

12. Large vehicles on narrow roads: Narrow ‘side’ roads are frequently used as shortcuts by a number of drivers. However, the moment a large vehicle such as a bus, truck or even a car comes along, there is no way a second vehicle can go through.

And there you have it, the 12 worst driving habits of Sri Lankans. Which is the worst of them all? Tell us in the comments!

hnb gi LOGO

Disclaimer: The views shared in this blog are based on the macro economic conditions & industry status quo as per the time of publishing.

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