Mug Hannah Ball, Staff Reporter

Tri-County Times | Hannah Ball

Not everyone knows this, but there is a hidden feature on every car that alerts other drivers to where you’re going by connecting tools on your steering wheel to the lighting system on the outside of your car.

 Pretty cool, right?

 Actually, this feature isn’t hidden, but it does appear that some people do not know about turn signals, or they just elect not to use them.

 This is a PSA from your friendly, neighborhood journalist and licensed driver; Use. Your. Turn. Signals.

 I’m not just channeling my road rage into space on a page. I’m trying to avoid being stuck at an intersection without a light, waiting for a slow car to pass, only to find out my waiting was for naught as they turn right without using a turn signal.

 I’m trying to avoid accidents on highways, where people regularly drive 80 mph, and recklessly change lanes without a turn signal.

 If you don’t think you need to use a turn signal, stay off the road. Never mind it being the law, it’s common sense.

 When you operate a few thousand pounds of heavy machinery, going down roads at high speeds next to people who are doing the same thing, you have a responsibility to yourself, to other drivers, and to your loved ones who would be devastated if you were killed in a car accident because you didn’t signal a turn.

 According to the Society of Automotive Engineers, 48 percent of drivers fail to use their turn signals, and 100 percent of them are idiots. (That last part was my opinion.)

 Using a signal isn’t hard — it’s a flick of a wrist.

 Last Thursday when I was driving to work, I was stuck behind someone who never used a turn signal in the four miles I drove behind him. Literally. I made turn after turn after him, hoping we wouldn’t be heading in the same direction. To my dismay, we were. There were five times he should have used his turn signal, but didn’t.

 If you don’t use your turn signal, I can guarantee you are the reason for someone’s headache, the reason someone’s late to work, and the reason for someone’s bad day.

 Don’t be that person.

 I use my turn signal for everything — turning onto streets, changing lanes, waiting in left-hand and right-hand turn lanes, turning into a parking spot if the lot is busy, and sometimes when I’m turning into my own driveway.

 It’s habit, as it should be for everyone.

 Your “blinker fluid” is not low. Turn signals are lights, and someone has lied to you. If your turn signals are broken, you need to drive the nearest repair shop to get it fixed as soon as possible.

 Other than that, there’s no excuse not to use your turn signals.

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