OPINION COLUMNS

Let’s take driving cues from the Italians

By Jeannine Eaton | Published Saturday, December 1, 2018

Share this page...

Three serious accidents within a week in Wise County should remind us that when we are driving, we need to stay focused on what we’re doing.

We recently returned from a 10-day vacation in Italy. We flew to Rome and toured for two days, then rented a van and drove to a villa in the Tuscany area. Our group included Roy and me, our son Jeff and his wife, Terry, and our son Brian and his wife, Felecia. Our son Barry and his wife, Kelly, were unable to go.

Jeannine Eaton

Jeannine Eaton

When we picked up our van at the Rome airport, Terry volunteered to drive to our villa. The traffic in Rome is mind-boggling with small cars and scooters going very fast in narrow lanes. Roy gladly agreed to let Terry get behind the wheel.

We arrived at our villa after dark and had to get assistance from the owner to find the place because the house number was hidden behind the hedges. Otherwise, the GPS on our car had led us to the house, despite being on a two-way street so narrow that we considered it one-way.

For the next week, we toured the Tuscany area with our trusty GPS and fearless driver Terry managing the roundabouts and 90 kilometer per hour speed limits. Occasionally we had tours with furnished drivers, and Terry talked to one driver about the traffic. He said Italian drivers stay focused.

Another thing that Roy noticed is all the big trucks drove in the right lane only. There must be serious fines for 18-wheelers to be in the left lane. That’s an idea I wish we could enforce here at home.

In the 10 days we were in Italy with all the fast traffic in the city and narrow roads in the countryside, we did not see a single accident, not even a fender-bender.

On our way home from DFW Airport, we saw an electronic sign on the highway that said there had been about 2,800 traffic fatalities in Texas so far in 2018. We have a police and fire scanner in our home to be able to cover the news in Wise County. There is a “10-50 major” (accident with injuries) four or five times a week. Those calls send police, firefighters and ambulances rushing to the scene to offer help. The pages of the Wise County Messenger are filled with too many fatality accidents.

Wake up, Wise County drivers! Concentrate, stay focused, slow down, put away your cell phones. Drivers in Wise County and all of Texas need to do a better job behind the wheel.

Let’s take a lesson from Italian drivers and cut the accident rate in Wise County and all of Texas.

Jeannine Eaton, and her husband, Roy, own the Wise County Messenger.

Leave a Reply. Note: As of March 24, 2011, all posted comments will include the users full name.

WCMessenger.com News and Blog Comment Guidelines

You must be logged in to post a comment.