What are my duties as a driver?
It’s probably not something that you would consider first, but you have a general duty of care to all other road users.
You must not collide with them or do something that causes them to have a collision or otherwise put them in danger. Supplementing common law, the Motor Vehicle Act makes it an offence to drive without due care and attention or to drive without reasonable consideration for others.
When you drive, you must obey all of the rules of the road.
All the time. Not just when it is convenient for you to do so.
It is also your responsibility to know what these rules are. If you ever face the courts to be called to account for your actions as a driver excuses such as “I didn’t know” or “Someone should have told me” will not be accepted.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, don’t bring a bad attitude to the driver’s seat. Driving is not all about ME, it’s all about US. Sharing and co-operation are concepts that should be foremost in our minds when we are behind the wheel.
Oh, and if you are a cyclist or pedestrian, most of this applies to you, too. ALL road users have a duty to share, co-operate and be safe.
Tim Schewe is a retired constable with many years of traffic law enforcement. To comment or learn more, please visit DriveSmartBC.ca