On observations on the weirdness of human behaviour: flipping small cars

Hobbes, I am a big man, 1m87 (6’2ish on a good day) and always felt like a sardine in a tin in little urban cars (trying to get out of my friend’s 2-door Clio is a bit of a mission, and enjoying a trip on the rear seat, a utopia). However, I understand the practicality and economy of owning one of these little fellas.

In my case, size matters, but that is just a design problem that car manufacturers don’t seem to be interested any time soon (I tried to stretch my legs in a Smart and I almost had to get out of the car due to a near panic attack). But that’s the everyday story of the below and above-average beings.

I guess that because I commute around 1,500 miles a month, I get to see accidents every now and then. I remember long time ago, when the Mercedes A-class was being tested, the news came up that a Swedish magazine rolled it over when trying to avoid a dummy deer. Ups!

In the last six months, I have seen several accidents that made me think twice about the safety of small cars.

Last November a yellow Fiat Punto just went upside down on the M40, near junction 1a when we drove by in the other direction. The wheels were still moving. Speeding? Maybe.

This February, just in front of North Acton tube station, in a 90 degree curve you cannot take faster than 30mph, a new Mini laid belly up in the middle of the street.

And yesterday morning at 8am, while driving my Missus to the train station, a pastel green convertible Punto showed us her undies on a bendy town road were 30mph feel like you are maxing out your senses.

Now, I’m not aware of the particular circumstances of these accidents, but the common denominator to me, the spectator, is no other than small cars with a nasty tendency to roll over in spaces so tight that would make you uncomfortable to walk by your granny.

It is also truth, that I am getting the feeling at work and on the streets that people are growingly suffering of a lethargic state of semi-consciousness where they cannot think straight. Credit crunch? Job loss prospects?

Drive safe.



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