You’re Not To Blame for Your Bad Driving

Researchers say your parents could be to blame for a "bad driving gene"

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Researchers just down the road at UC Irvine might have uncovered the reason why you are such a bad driver ... uh, we mean "others".  It could just be your parent's fault for passing on the "bad driving gene," according to an article in The Press-Enterprise

Though researchers stress they are not on the verge of curing bad driving, one of the studies seems to indicate a deficiency of a brain chemical might explain why some people have trouble driving.

According to another study, rude drivers who weave through traffic might actually be helping to ease commutes.

Researchers studying neurology in Irvine stumbled upon one possible cause for bad driving earlier this year. The team, at UC Irvine, was studying a particular gene variant important to how the brain heals, explained Dr. Steven Cramer, the lead researcher and a neurologist at the university.

But before we start calling our parents to complain about how high our cost of auto insurance is, a group of researchers in Sweden claim that rude and aggressive drivers--referred to as LA drivers--actually help traffic.  This means the bad driving could be a solution to the horrendous traffic problem we know we will face no matter what time of day or night we arrive in Los Angeles.  The Press-Enterprise continues:

Commuters also complain it's not people who have difficulties driving that pose the greatest danger.

"It's all these morons talking on their phones," Barry Toomer, 60, of Moreno Valley, said.

But some morons can help move traffic, according to a study this summer in Sweden, that used a computer model to test the effect rude drivers have on traffic flow.

The report found that although everyone obeying the laws and passing on the correct side and not cutting off others is efficient, the best results are when about 40 percent of the drivers aren't following all the rules.

The study, which has made the rounds as a defense of offensive driving, concluded that people who fight their way through traffic end up diluting the number of cars getting through by using every chance they get. The rude drivers also help create paths through slower drivers.

Again, Toomer said he was unconvinced.

"It's dangerous," he said. "Do they get where they're going faster? Yeah, buddy, getting that one car in front of me in traffic is going to really take time off your drive."

So the next time you find yourself stuck in traffic on 101, no matter if you are here in the Bay Area or in Southern California, and someone speeds by you weaving recklessly in and out of traffic, don't curse them.  Actually, thank them for "moving traffic" and curse their parents for passing on the "bad driver gene."

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