As seen on:

SMH Logo News Logo

Call 1300 303 181

Australia’s Best New Car News, Reviews and Buying Advice

Australia’s Least Wanted Drivers (In Car Parks, Anyway)

bad-parking-7132531The following are the drivers we least want to see in carparks in our local shopping malls or similar. Give them all a great big raspberry!

#1 Able-Bodied Amanda

Amanda can be found parking in the disabled park, even though there is nothing the matter with her. She’s “only going in for a minute and nobody uses the disabled car park anyway”. Nobody, that is, except at least half a dozen people in any typical urban neighbourhood, who all fume at Amanda as she makes them take their wheelchairs from the other side of the carpark. One day, they will be rolling past as she gets back into her car and she will wish she could bury herself in a large hole.

A close relative of Able-Bodied Amanda is Childless Charlotte, who takes up the parents-of-small-children parks in a similar fashion.

Do not confuse Able-Bodied Amanda with the drivers who have disabilities that are less than visible and legitimately park in the disabled carpark.

#2 Jovial Joe

Jovial Joe is more likely to be found in the car parks of supermarkets in small towns.  Joe knows everybody and loves to stop for a good old yarn. This sees him stopping his Toyota Hilux  ute in the middle of the non-parking bits of the carpark (you can’t really call them roads but you know what I mean) and rolling down the window to have a long chat to Garrulous Gary. Alternatively, he will stand with the door of his ute open, taking up the car park beside him as well as the one his ute’s in while Chatty Charlie beside him does the same, thus taking up yet another car park. Small-town carparks are not huge.

Just be thankful you’re not waiting for Jovial Joe to move his ute away from the bowser at the petrol station while he’s in talking to the attendant.

#3 SUV Sarah

SUV Sarah is in the running for Super Mum Of The Year and wants everyone to know it. She drives a softroader SUV with all the bells and whistles (e.g. Audi Q7) to keep the kiddies safe.  If she could put all those front and rear parking sensors to better use, her ownership of this large vehicle would not be a problem.  As it is, she always seems to take up three spaces, or even five when the doors of the SUV are thrown open.

You could blame the designers of the carparks – some of them do seem to have been thinking of teeny tiny classic Minis or Fiat 500s  when painting the lines designating the parking spaces.

#4 Squealing Simon

Squealing Simon is more of an urban nuisance and is often found on the upper floors of car parking buildings.  Squealing Simon has seen too many movies involving shoot-outs or car chase scenes set in car parking buildings and is trying to emulate them.  The end result is that you come up the ramp trying to find a park where you’re not likely to be collected by SUV Sarah, Wonky Wilma or Learner Larry (or if you are Wonky Wilma or Learner Larry trying to minimise your nuisance value), you will be suddenly confronted by screeching tyres and a revving engine attached to something that narrowly misses him.

#5 Learner Larry

Learner Larry is forgivable but still a nuisance.  Learner Larry has the L-plates carefully in place and is learning how to park a car properly.  Larry is very, very new at this and is terrified that he is going to hit the fancy new Mercedes behind him, so he goes v-e-e-e-r-y s-l-o-o-o-o-w-l-y.  The long line of other drivers waiting for him to finish his manoeuvre only adds to his nerves and makes him take it even more slowly.  Try not to honk your horn at him.

However irritating he is, Learner Larry is preferable to the closely related P-Plate Peter, who thinks he knows it all, forgets he’s not in Mum’s vehicle with all the sensors and cameras, and goes careening backwards into your bumper.

#6 Wonky Wilma

Wonky Wilma is not spatially gifted.  She never gets the angle exactly right for getting into an angle park (don’t ask about what her parallel parking is like).  At least seven times out of ten, she will not be in the right place in the parking space. She will be right up close to the white line, making it impossible for you to open your door without taking her paint off or she will be straddling the white line and hoping nobody else comes along. Sometimes, she’s in the space on a slight diagonal rather than straight, but at least that’s not going to be a problem for others in the car park… until it’s time for her to back out.

#7 Canine Carrie

Canine Carrie loves dogs. She owns several of them and takes them with her wherever she goes.  She would take them into the supermarket with her on her frequent trips to buy dog sausage and other treats for her precious fur-kids.  However, this is not permitted, so she leaves them in the car, with the window open so they don’t overheat, of course.  As she leaves, the furry tribe breaks into a volley of barking caused by separation anxiety.  When she is doing her shopping, further barking breaks out every time anyone walks within 10 metres of the car.  Little noses with sharp little teeth will appear in the gap at the top of the window as her smallest dog (the one that has the Napoleon complex) tries to defend the vehicle with everything in his tiny little body. The car can be seen wobbling as the dogs rush to and fro for a better vantage spot for barking at passers-by.  The dogs go berserk when Carrie comes back, increasing the amount of barking and wobbling.

The advantage of Canine Carrie is that her dogs provide you with entertainment while you wait for Learner Larry to finish manoeuvring.

#8 Trailer Trevor

Trailer Trevor is a hard-working contractor who just needs to pick up supplies from the hardware store or grab a few groceries for the wife on the way home from a job (might as well make use of the fact that the run to and from work all goes in the log book as a work trip even if you grab the shopping on the way).  However, he’s got his trailer hitched to the Nissan Navara.  He’d like to find a pair of parking spaces nose to nose that will let him park with the minimum of nuisance; he really would.  However, such parks are not available, forcing him to take up a long line of parking spaces as he parks sideways.

Any additions to this list are most welcome.  Or not welcome, as the case may be.

Safe and happy driving,

Megan (self-confessed Wonky Wilma)