Dash cam - driver stops on highway for birds

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This is dash camera footage I took today. 55 mph highway, a bunch of people behind me, and this idiot comes to a sudden complete panic stop in front of me in the middle of the road to let some birds cross the street. I screeched to a stop, looked in my rear view mirror and saw people swerving and heard tires squealing behind me. I swerved around him to the left so I didn't get rear ended. At the next stop light the guy wanted to yell at me for almost killing the birds. I reminded him with harsh words that people could have died because of his shenanigans and people are worth more than 10 ounce animals that wont even damage a car. His wife had the dirtiest mouth on a woman I have ever heard. Reminder people. You learned in drivers ed NOT to swerve or stop on a freaking highway for tiny animals. Animals die people. Get over it. Its better for a squirrel to die than for a 4 car pileup that kills a mother (or in my case a father) of two kids. Absolute stupidity. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C3LMwjrZQq8
 
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Maybe he's a birder, people that watch/study birds. They're a bit different. There's a bird sanctuary nearby so I've dealt with them before, strange for sure. Happy no one was hurt is the bottom line. I've had that before with another driver who cut me off and the wife started cussing up a storm with children in the back seat. Supposedly there were children back there since the glass was tinted. The guy said I'm lucky his children are back there. Former NFL running back that still works for the team.
 
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Luckily there were no accidents. I saw videos like this all the time when I was in the insurance industry. I saw a terrible video with a 3 car accident that had some pretty serious injuries. The cause? A texting driver who slammed on their brakes for a green light on a 50 mph road. People slamming on the brakes at the end of on-ramps also seemed pretty popular.
 
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Not you, you had good reflexes and good driving skills. The other driver:.... well other states/countries are not taught to run over animals. I get your point in many threads about the lolly-guys and lolly-gals that just lolly in 3rd lane..... The birds,... had wings?
 
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Egrets? Family of 4 with 2 young. Doubt those 2 little guys could fly yet. They'd be toast if the car didn't slow. Seems most people could see them a distance away and start to slow down. Tap the brake lights, turn on the flashers. Not condoning the behavior, just looking at alternatives so no one gets into an accident. If heavy rush hour traffic, that's different. Fwiw, anyone driving should be able to come to a complete stop on short notice and avoid hitting the driver in front of them. If you can't, you're not driving with proper awareness. It's going to happen to all of us at one time. Have a plan of action ready.
 
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You did the 100% right thing. I would give the licence plate details of the bird watcher car to the local Sheriff as they should be charged with distracted driving or careless driving.
 
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No morons here. The timing of their braking came at the worst time for you as you were passing the car in the curb lane. If you were not on the ball he would have been rear ended.
 
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Originally Posted By: KGMtech
You did the 100% right thing. I would give the licence plate details of the bird watcher car to the local Sheriff as they should be charged with distracted driving or careless driving.
I wouldn't go that far. Were they stupid? Yes, but you also aren't obligated to hit things in the road so other drivers don't rear-end you.
 

ZeeOSix

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This is one reason I don't like following too close to the cars in front of me. Leaves more time to see what's going on, and leaves some time to make any drastic moves I need to make to get out of a bad situation.
 
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Guy I graduated high school with swerved to avoid a German shepherd dog in the road. He killed a child. Sometimes you have to make choices. Car pulled out in front of me in the rain in a Camaro and did a 180. I could have possibly avoided the car by driving over the curb and onto a lawn but I wasn't sure if the sidewalk was clear and was pretty sure I could slow enough to avoid any serious injuries to me or the occupants of the other car. I hit the camaro pretty good but no one got hurt. Egrets are very cool birds but we need to make the right choices.
 
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I would have stopped also. You all were driving at a seemingly reasonable pace with plenty of room around each other. If people were coming to screeching halts with near-misses for this then they weren't paying attention.
Originally Posted By: 69GTX
EFwiw, anyone driving should be able to come to a complete stop on short notice and avoid hitting the driver in front of them. If you can't, you're not driving with proper awareness. It's going to happen to all of us at one time. Have a plan of action ready.
This, 100% this.
Originally Posted By: KGMtech
You did the 100% right thing. I would give the licence plate details of the bird watcher car to the local Sheriff as they should be charged with distracted driving or careless driving.
You're being a bit ridiculous. EDIT: Looking at the video, guy in front of you had his brakes on for at least three full seconds before you started slowing down so abruptly so maybe it was your actions that elevated the situation for the people behind you. Just sayin'.
 

gathermewool

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Looks like you had plenty of time to stop and chose to go around instead of fully stopping. Going around him in the turning lane was a bit aggressive (though I would have done the same thing). Did you know he was stopping for birds before you went around him or did you decide to continue around him after seeing that it was only birds?
 
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If that were a moose or deer you stop. Any stop is dangerous but that highway is two lanes and plenty of place to go around. We have local two lane highways that are 55MPH and if a car stops you slow down, stop or proceed around.
 

bubbatime

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Originally Posted By: Bottom_Feeder
I would have stopped also.
Well then you would have been in the wrong. Its a 55 mph zone but many do 60-65. There were 8-10 cars stacked up behind the guy, because well, he was doing the speed limit in the passing lane and not getting over to the right lane like he was supposed to (strike one). You do NOT stop on a road with moderate traffic that is going 55-65 mph for a couple of birds. (strike two) If you can watch that video and think that guy was 100% justified in stopping like that, then I would advise you to go to driving school for remedial.
 

bubbatime

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Originally Posted By: gathermewool
Looks like you had plenty of time to stop and chose to go around instead of fully stopping. Going around him in the turning lane was a bit aggressive (though I would have done the same thing). Did you know he was stopping for birds before you went around him or did you decide to continue around him after seeing that it was only birds?
My three year old was in the back seat, there were cars coming up behind me (rapidly), tires screeching, and I swerved left so as to not get rear ended. I'm actually surprised that moron man didn't get rear ended himself. You see the birds on the video, before I saw them. I didn't see them until I was in the left lane, as my attention had been diverted to the rear view/side mirrors to see how much space I had before I got rear ended.
 
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Originally Posted By: bubbatime
Originally Posted By: Bottom_Feeder
I would have stopped also.
Well then you would have been in the wrong. Its a 55 mph zone but many do 60-65. There were 8-10 cars stacked up behind the guy, because well, he was doing the speed limit in the passing lane and not getting over to the right lane like he was supposed to (strike one). You do NOT stop on a road with moderate traffic that is going 55-65 mph for a couple of birds. (strike two)
many years ago I stopped on the shoulder on I-94 in WI, while coming back to CHI, for a diaper change break. All the lines of traffic where barely moving. WI statie, stopped behind me in less than 2 minutes. He stopped at about 4-5 cars lengths behind. "You are not safe here!" The reason was, even with the cars moving slow, there was a risk of somebody stopping heavily/abruptly from a higher speed, or the shoulder "cutters". If this could happen on the shoulder, Then I Absolutely agree with OP, seeing how some drivers drive on FL roads....
 
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No way am I going to slam the brakes on to a dead stop on a major road like that, especially with a line of traffic behind. I have ran over plenty of birds and other wildlife in my years driving and none of them are worth causing an accident over.
 
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I learned from a Mr. Hurley, the football coach, how to drive in drivers ed in a new 1962 Ford Falcon. Mr. Hurley taught not to follow too close so if there is any situation ahead, you won't be too close to stop. It could be birds, children, whatever, if someone stops and you run into them, it is your bad driving that causes the accident, not his. Mr. Hurley showed us about not tailgating and keeping a safe distance. It's not for people to judge why someone stops, just to mind their own affairs and not hit the car in front.
 
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