Saturday, April 21, 2012

African Driving

South Africa - Motherland 2010

Africa Driving

There are many more places we went during the 2 months we spent in Africa than what I listed in my Top 10 Destinations, but most of those were due to detours because of soccer games or so far off the beaten track that unless you rented a car they aren’t likely to be visited by a normal tourist. With that being said, based on the number of wrecks and deaths in South Africa from driving, I would recommend renting a car if possible. They cram the buses full of people, and by buses, I mean minivans. Vans intended to hold 8-12 people that somehow have 25.

Then there is the fact that speed limits seem to be suggestions. A sign that says 60 kilometers per hour most likely means, if you aren’t going at least 90 you are going to get run off the road. And the funny this is the cops don’t seem to care. You will occasionally see cops on the side of the road, usually 3 or 4, with a radar gun pointed at oncoming traffic. Usually one of them had a clipboard. Maybe they are writing down speed limits and license plate numbers, who knows. Regardless, they aren’t chasing after you like you’d expect if you were going 30 over the speed limit.

Then you will see an occasional police car driving on the shoulder of a highway. And they aren’t going the speed limit, but probably closer to half the posted speed. And they too won’t chase you down for speeding. To make matters worse, people pass whenever they feel like it. Not surprising they have so many deaths and wrecks really. It’s the ultimate game of chicken. Insane, that’s the only way you can explain African driving.

I hope this has all been helpful and I hope you enjoy Africa as much as I did.

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