Driving within the lines of the road is important

One sure sign of growing up when we were young was the ability to use our crayons and stay between the lines... the same applies to driving

One sure sign of growing up when we were young was the ability to use our crayons and stay between the lines.

An important skill for a “grown up” driver is also the ability to stay between the lines. Judging by the e-mails that I have received lately from readers who state that this is their main pet peeve, there is a sizable number of drivers out there who need to do a bit more skill growing.

If you haven’t been on the inside of a curve lately and met an oncoming driver part way over the center line into your lane, a quick look at the lines painted on the road will tell you that many tires have passed over the paint and worn it away.

It shouldn’t matter if you cross over the lines when no one is coming should it? Well, it’s both illegal in that situation and will end up in a collision the first time you fail to see the oncoming vehicle and will be really interesting if that driver is doing the same thing!

Perhaps more common still is the encroachment onto the shoulder when drivers go around a corner. This territory is the domain of pedestrians and cyclists; your vehicle does not belong there.

It’s hardly likely that you would be injured or killed in a collision here but the same cannot be said for the unprotected shoulder users.

So, show a little pride in your ability to be a mature, skillful driver. Keep your vehicle inside that 2.6-metre-wide space between the lines.

This will also show your respect for other road users and help to keep them safe. If you cannot, it’s time to put your crayons back in the box and let someone else do the driving.

For more information on this topic, visit www.drivesmartbc.ca. Questions or comments are welcome by e-mail to comments@drivesmartbc.ca. Tim Schewe is a retired RCMP constable with many years of traffic law enforcement experience. His column appears Friday.