Anyone who drives has had them, in spades. This is a fairly recent phenomenon that I have observed, over the last few years. I can't figure it out and hope that someone on this site will be able to enlighten me! I started noticing a lot of drivers leaving huge gaps between themselves and the car in front of them. I'm talking about at stop lights, stop signs, courtesy corners, etc. I mean entire car lengths between themselves and the car they are stopped behind. This is unnecessary, stupid, and leads to longer back-ups than necessary. I often see situations where, in a dedicated turning lane, there are probably only half of the cars in it than the number that should fit, meaning the lanes of through traffic become backed up. I took a short defensive driving lesson sponsored by my local police force, back in the 80's and learned that it's a good idea to leave enough space in front of yourself and the car in front of you, to make it possible for you to get out in case of emergency (ie, the car in front breaks down). This makes lots of sense, but it doesn't require much room at all, certainly not an entire car length!! Is this happening elsewhere and can anyone explain to me why?? Is this what they are training new drivers to do these days??