When you’re driving, there is plenty going on to keep you busy – make sure everyone is wearing a seatbelt, don’t go too fast, don’t go too slow, don’t tailgate, use your turn signal, don’t use your cell phone! Oh. My. Goodness.
As if there aren’t enough things to think about when we’re out there on the road, it seems lawmakers have gone the extra mile to keep us on our toes. Rules of the road are, of course, meant to ensure safety standards. But some of these little gems that have been implemented over the years (and that are still on the books!) seem more likely to cause you to shake your head and wonder, “What were they THINKING?”
When traveling through Nebraska, you should be aware that they have a law requiring drivers on mountains to drive with caution near the right-hand edge of the highway. You may also want to be aware that there are no mountains in Nebraska.
Just a bit north, in South Dakota, one can obtain a driver’s license at the young age of 14. This may not seem all that strange, unless you have a 14-year-old. Or know a 14-year-old. Or have ever been 14 years old.
But I guess that’s better than Indiana, where there is no age restriction at all – whilst driving a horse and buggy.
Much like that one, many of the most entertaining rules are the old, outdated ones that involve animals. For instance, in Little Rock, Arkansas, you may not walk your cow down Main Street after 1:00 p.m. on Sunday. In contrast, the state of Wisconsin grants livestock the right-of-way on public roads at all times.
Oddly enough, I recently came upon a cattle drive near my house. (I live in suburban Dallas.) Outdated or not, I think Wisconsin got this one right. Those cows absolutely stopped traffic until the road was clear. I can’t put my finger on it, but somehow all of this gives new meaning to the phrase, “’til the cows come home.”
Then there are what I refer to as the “Uh huh, okay, that’ll work” laws.
For instance, in Illinois you’re required to contact the police before entering the city in an automobile. I can only assume “the city” is Chicago, and um … uh huh, okay, that’ll work.
Washington, in an effort to reduce crime, made it mandatory for motorists with criminal intentions to stop at the city limits and notify the police chief as he (the criminal) is entering the town.
Uh huh, okay. That’ll work.