Summer is the time of year when you want to hop in the car, drive some place and have a good day out.

Well, I’m not sure if it’s the sunshine or the holidays, but there seems to be more silly folk out in cars than usual.

I’ve had a series of cars to review lately but I’ve found myself on many trips denied a chance to drive the car properly, and it’s usually down to one or more of these drivers below.

Some days I feel more thwarted than others, but I’m coming around to the idea that motorways really are the only place where you can get a chance of a clean sweep at the tarmac without interruption. It’s still very hit and miss though.

So let me introduce the main offenders that ruin a good day out:

1) The Wobbler

This driver is quite common on rural roads and the wobbling condition in and out over the white line may also be seen with inconsistent speed tendencies, manifested by chronic speeding up and slowing down in an unpredictable manner. An acute indecisiveness means you can never be quite sure what this driver is going to do next.

2) Motorhome Chugger

Drives a motorhome as large as your house. It’s so heavy, it’s so big and it’s so slow up hills that you expect it to start rolling down any minute now. Chug, chug. This is a real summer driver and will usually not be familiar with the road. This should make us more sympathetic but when you are following behind at snail’s pace with no view save for the motorhome’s big, ugly rear, there is not much to be pleasant about.

3) Nervous Nelly

This driver will brake when meeting an oncoming car, before a corner, in a corner, after a corner, on straight bits of road (careful now), and of course when approaching a speed camera van, even though there was no fear of breaking the limit in the first place. Nervous or negligent? The jury is still out.

4) Junction Joker

Are you really going to pull out in front of me and then crawl along? Yes, you’ve just done it. This driver lives life close to the edge and wonders what your hurry is. An initial burst of acceleration accompanied by a puff of smoke from the exhaust gives you hope that maybe this time it will be different. But alas, a crawl at 50km/h ensues before the offender pulls into another junction a few hundred metres ahead. They could have waited for you to pass surely?

5) The Casual Vacant

Unpredictable, vacant, oblivious. This driver lacks awareness of other road users and gives no warning or indication. Indicators? Pah! They will just stop in their tracks if they feel like it. It could be to read a signpost, say hi to a friend, or check out the new supermarket construction or the extension the neighbour is building.

6) Monospeed Maven

This driver will cruise along uncomfortably slower than the overall flow of traffic. They like to keep a steady monospeed, usually wavering around the 60km/h mark, a safe speed where the car can’t get away on them. Then they cruise through the 50km/h speed limit at the same rate of pace, all the while smugly thinking that you couldn’t keep up with them. No you’re breaking the law!

Now what sort of driver behaviour grinds your gears on the road?

Caroline Kidd