I remember when my family first moved from the US to the UK, one off the most obvious — and most difficult — parts of culture shock was driving on the opposite side of the road. There’s a number of little things that make this a challenge — for example, it’s hard to know where the left front corner of your car is in relation to where you’re sitting in the driver’s seat. This issue led to a couple awkward explanations at the rental car place.
However, far more troubling is when you have a mental lapse, revert to old habits, and drive on the wrong side altogether (which is surprisingly easy to do when there’s no oncoming traffic).
It appears Americans aren’t the only ones who space out while behind the wheel. Brits driving in France are apparently having considerable trouble remembering to drive on the right side of the road, as opposed to left as they’ve grown accustom. So much so, that police in a small town in northern France have launched a poster campaign to remind motorists to drive on the appropriate side.
They hope that by covering the town in English-language posters that read: “For your safety, keep right on French roads,” they can prevent additional tourist-related traffic deaths (there have been 2 in the last 2 years in this town alone).
Now if they could just explain how round-a-bouts work, I think we’ll be in business.