In October, I wrote a blog about the driving in Malta and how I had been amazed by the very low standard. On my short daily commute last week I came upon two examples of the standard of driving here.
On Wednesday, while going through Burmarrad, I saw a car parked on the central reservation. Nothing unusual there you might think, considering we are in Malta – people park almost any where, including on roundabouts. However, in this case, the central reservation is a low slab of concrete and tarmac, just a little narrower than the space between the wheels of a car – I think you may be ahead of me here!
The driver of this car had managed to straddle the central reservation and in doing so had removed part of his sump, liberally spreading oil all over the road. Now you would think that the driver might notice the loud noise as the sump is ripped off and stop rather quickly, but from the distance the car has travelled, the driver was either oblivious or travelling at a fair old lick!
The following day, while going around the roundabout just outside St Paul’s Bay, I was surprised to see a car abandoned in the middle of the roundabout. He was actually very lucky, having escaped hitting the large palm tree head on and instead having just scraped the half of the passenger side, coming to a stop with the passenger door jammed shut by the tree.
To get where he did was quite a feat. The roundabout is not exactly small and the grassy incline he ended up on is fairly steep, so again, he must have been dozing or just going at some speed. The day after it was announced that the driver had not been found and the police were appealing for witnesses.
The final part of this story is the Sunday Times of Malta running an article talking to young drivers on their experiences of driving in Malta and they all mentioned the bad driving and speeding.
Something needs to be done, but so far the government seems content with traipsing down the same road other governments have trod, with the “Speed Kills” mantra. Yes speed can be a contributory factor, but the main culprit is simple bad driving. Until the standard of driving improves, focussing just on speed is not going to have a great affect.
Perhaps you think otherwise?