Is it just me or has anyone else noticed that people are driving a lot slower than they used to on the freeways? I’m all about doing the speed limit myself so I’m used to having people crawling up my ass most of the time—even though I’m in the slow lane—and only occasionally getting into the passing lane when I approach the rare person driving even slower than I am (often someone on their cell phone).
I’ve noticed over the past several weeks, roughly about the time gas hit four bucks a gallon here, a growing trend of people doing 65MPH or slower on the freeways. Whereas my excursions into the passing lane used to be infrequent and short lived they are now coming more often and for greater lengths of time. The number of idiots doing 90 while weaving through traffic has diminished quite a bit mainly because there’s too much congestion for them to have a hope of dodging their way through traffic.
It’s a simple fact that lower speeds use less gas, that was part of the motivation to make the speed limit 55MPH during the first energy crunch, but I’m surprised at the number of people who seem to be voluntarily participating in driving slower. At least one person I know says they’re definitely slowing down to save gas and has netted an extra 80 miles out of a full tank for doing so. It’s somewhat ironic that high gas prices are accomplishing something that draconian speed laws and occasional police crack downs haven’t been able to for years: Get people to drive slower.
Of course whereas I was once annoyed by people driving too fast I’m now annoyed by people driving too slow, but if I had to pick one of the two evils to deal with I’ll happily go with the latter one.