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ToSeek
2005-Feb-15, 05:52 PM
Does changing lanes get you there faster? (http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/Traffic/story?id=499882&page=1)


It's a question virtually every driver has asked themselves at some point in a traffic jam: "Is the lane next to me moving faster?" According to a study by two University of Toronto researchers, the answer is no.

In fact, according to their research, not only will weaving back and forth between lanes not get you to your destination faster, it could put you and your passengers' lives at risk.

Candy
2005-Feb-15, 06:00 PM
Oh, don't get me started on this subject! :evil:

I still wonder why folks drove like nuts weaving in traffic.
I often get a close look at their cars (during the stop light that they didn't make).
Their cars are full of obvious accident remnants. :-k

When will they ever learn? :roll:

jfribrg
2005-Feb-15, 06:11 PM
my rule is to get in whatever lane is closed. If construction is forcing 2 lanes into one, then many cars will merge long before the merge point, which opens things up for me. I get to the merge point, merge and off I go. It doesn't always work that way, but most of the time it does.

Bob
2005-Feb-15, 06:51 PM
Your tactic doesn't work if people like me won't let people like you merge.

Grey
2005-Feb-15, 06:55 PM
my rule is to get in whatever lane is closed. If construction is forcing 2 lanes into one, then many cars will merge long before the merge point, which opens things up for me. I get to the merge point, merge and off I go. It doesn't always work that way, but most of the time it does.
Ah, so you're the one who always waits until the last minute, preventing the smooth merging of traffic and causing so much of a slowdown in the first place!

beskeptical
2005-Feb-15, 07:08 PM
Your tactic doesn't work if people like me won't let people like you merge.Someone always either lets them in or fails to block.

I have to say though, being a person who totally believes in fair play on the road, I also go in the lane that is closing under similar conditions. Who the heck decided everyone should move over where they moved over? I have seen up to 1/2 a mile of wasted lane because of this.

One group decides they need to get over lest they be unable to later because of people like Bob or for whatever other reasons they may have.

The other group, like jfribrg and myself see the unused lane which if they don't go in it someone else will, and also would rather people used both lanes when traffic is crawling and have every other car go at the end of the merge.

Since there is no road rule reason to get over sooner, except other people's opinions, I sort of resent those opinions. OTOH, I don't really want to cheat and I can see why folks resent the passing cars.

But really, use both lanes and merge at the end when traffic is slow seems to me to be the more logical choice.

beskeptical
2005-Feb-15, 07:11 PM
my rule is to get in whatever lane is closed. If construction is forcing 2 lanes into one, then many cars will merge long before the merge point, which opens things up for me. I get to the merge point, merge and off I go. It doesn't always work that way, but most of the time it does.
Ah, so you're the one who always waits until the last minute, preventing the smooth merging of traffic and causing so much of a slowdown in the first place!It appears you are being delayed because the folks that didn't get over are now adding to the cars ahead of you. But if everyone used both lanes and merged at the end, every other car, the merging would not be contributing to slowing traffic speed.

Wally
2005-Feb-15, 07:16 PM
my rule is to get in whatever lane is closed. If construction is forcing 2 lanes into one, then many cars will merge long before the merge point, which opens things up for me. I get to the merge point, merge and off I go. It doesn't always work that way, but most of the time it does.

You'd be dead meat in any merging lanes in the Chicago area man! Many times, truckers will get side-by-side to block the soon-to-be-closed lane far short of the actual cones just to keep folks like you from doing that. Even if someone doesn't block the lane, you'd get so many eye-daggers in your back you couldn't help but feel them!!! [-X


[editted to add - darn! had this reply opened so long, many others jumped in front of me! ]

beskeptical
2005-Feb-15, 07:19 PM
I usually pick out a truck to track if I'm getting ahead by lane changing. If you get ahead it's usually by a pittance of a distance. Once in a while you see someone actually get so far ahead you don't see them again, but it's rare.

Shifting lanes would be useful if there was some way it ended up evening the traffic in the lanes. Instead, cars overfill each free lane so that the lane they left is freed up and the one they go into is blocked. The secret is like winning in the stock market. Stay out of sync with the majority. When your lane starts slowing, move to the crowded lane everyone else is leaving.

Bob
2005-Feb-15, 07:34 PM
There actually is a law defining merging in California. Unfortunately it depends on common courtesy and driver maturity to make things go smoothly. Drivers in both lanes must act responsibility. The merging driver should speed up or slow down and, if a convenient gap is available, pull into it. The driver in the through lane should slow if necessary to accomodate someone who needs to merge. Human nature being what it is, actual merging is sometimes accompanied by one handed salutes.

Glom
2005-Feb-15, 07:38 PM
Well, your roads suck. I think we established that in the roundabout thread. A bit of ballet on the motorways is a wonder to behold. I always keep in the fastest lane I can keep up with. On Sunday, driving up the M40, it was 80 in the slow lane, which I had to stay in because the strong winds was seriously denting the performance of my plucky little car.

Astronot
2005-Feb-15, 07:48 PM
While I will agree that regular lanes switching will not help, there are certain circumstances that can speed up a commute if you drive on a highway every day and can learn which lanes move fastest on different stretches of a freeway. As others have said, if there is a merger on a two lane road get into the drooped lane. There is no hard rule that says when you should merge in stop and go traffic, but as with every thing in life donít be a pig. If three lanes a merging into two get into the unaffected lane.

In regular driving for instance, if there is an exit ahead that many people take and the traffic does not back up onto the freeway, get into the right lane because those folks will be moving out of your way. Conversely, the right lane tend to move slowly when cars are coming onto the freeway. Stay to the left. Learning the pattern of a particular freeway can, on average, save you some time if you want to go to the trouble. Otherwise hang in the left lane, put on some good music and enjoy the time to yourself.


One other thing about freeway driving is that traffic moving the same direction yields to the left. That is if two cars are vying for a spot in a lane between them, the left car has the right of way. The principle also holds when two equal highways merge, cars on the left have right of way. This is the opposite of crossing traffic at intersections where you yield right.

jfribrg
2005-Feb-15, 08:00 PM
my rule is to get in whatever lane is closed. If construction is forcing 2 lanes into one, then many cars will merge long before the merge point, which opens things up for me. I get to the merge point, merge and off I go. It doesn't always work that way, but most of the time it does.
Ah, so you're the one who always waits until the last minute, preventing the smooth merging of traffic and causing so much of a slowdown in the first place!

As long as I have a broken white line, there is nothing improper about it. And no, I don't cut anyone off when I finally do merge. Lately I have seen signs that read "Use both lanes up to merge point". Using both lanes does help improve the flow. I'm just doing my part. My actions help all of us get to our destinations just a little bit faster, and I continue on my way, not waiting for the accolades from my appreciative fellow motorists.

ToSeek
2005-Feb-15, 08:05 PM
But really, use both lanes and merge at the end when traffic is slow seems to me to be the more logical choice.

If traffic is really dead slow, it probably doesn't make a whole lot of difference when you merge. If traffic is moving quickly, then it's better to merge when the opportunity permits so as not to slow things down. But my feeling is that the reason traffic goes from fast to slow is that people merge at the last second, causing people behind them to slam on their brakes. And after that it's slow.

jfribrg
2005-Feb-15, 08:09 PM
In regular driving for instance, if there is an exit ahead that many people take and the traffic does not back up onto the freeway, get into the right lane because those folks will be moving out of your way. Conversely, the right lane tend to move slowly when cars are coming onto the freeway. Stay to the left. Learning the pattern of a particular freeway can, on average, save you some time if you want to go to the trouble. Otherwise hang in the left lane, put on some good music and enjoy the time to yourself.


In my area, I have picked up a few counter-intuitive time-savers. There a couple of exits where the left lanes back up much worse than the exit lane. I'm not sure why. My guess is that so many people get into the left lane trying to avoid the exiting traffic, that it is actually quite a bit faster to slow down with the exiting traffic than it is to avoid it. One exit down the road is a cloverleaf exit where the exit and onramp are about 1/2 mile apart. The on ramp does back up, but between the exit and the on ramp the right lane is often empty. Folks know that the upcoming merge is a pain. I just ride the lane until I get to the merge and then change lanes (if I can). In any case, the left two lanes are far worse than the merge. You would think that folks who ride the road every day would figure this stuff out, but apparently not too many have. I like to keep it that way.

gethen
2005-Feb-15, 08:18 PM
my rule is to get in whatever lane is closed. If construction is forcing 2 lanes into one, then many cars will merge long before the merge point, which opens things up for me. I get to the merge point, merge and off I go. It doesn't always work that way, but most of the time it does.
And it's illegal in some places, as it prevents the smooth flow of traffic when people slow waayyy down or stop to let you in. In this state the State Police even considered placing a squad car there to ticket offenders, but then decided they really didn't have enough troopers to do it.

teddyv
2005-Feb-15, 08:19 PM
my rule is to get in whatever lane is closed. If construction is forcing 2 lanes into one, then many cars will merge long before the merge point, which opens things up for me. I get to the merge point, merge and off I go. It doesn't always work that way, but most of the time it does.
Ah, so you're the one who always waits until the last minute, preventing the smooth merging of traffic and causing so much of a slowdown in the first place!

As long as I have a broken white line, there is nothing improper about it. And no, I don't cut anyone off when I finally do merge. Lately I have seen signs that read "Use both lanes up to merge point". Using both lanes does help improve the flow. I'm just doing my part. My actions help all of us get to our destinations just a little bit faster, and I continue on my way, not waiting for the accolades from my appreciative fellow motorists.

I totally agree with you. Another merging issue that frustrates me to no end is the on-ramp merge where most people seem to want to merge early and then stop if there is no opening instead of using the whole on-ramp length to get up to speed. :evil: :evil:

Nicolas
2005-Feb-15, 08:23 PM
my rule is to get in whatever lane is closed. If construction is forcing 2 lanes into one, then many cars will merge long before the merge point, which opens things up for me. I get to the merge point, merge and off I go. It doesn't always work that way, but most of the time it does.

Local police just asked people who finally learned "zipping" to do just that. They learned to merge one after another, but they merge too soon. They think this is polite, because it differs them from the nuts going 100 till the very end, then honk to get in. Only, if they all would continue on the lane to be closed at a decent speed (as fast as the lane next to them) and only merge at the end, half a mile of extra lane could be used.

So if you do it decend, the police is on your side if you wait till the end to merge.

Nicolas
2005-Feb-15, 08:25 PM
my rule is to get in whatever lane is closed. If construction is forcing 2 lanes into one, then many cars will merge long before the merge point, which opens things up for me. I get to the merge point, merge and off I go. It doesn't always work that way, but most of the time it does.
Ah, so you're the one who always waits until the last minute, preventing the smooth merging of traffic and causing so much of a slowdown in the first place!

As long as I have a broken white line, there is nothing improper about it. And no, I don't cut anyone off when I finally do merge. Lately I have seen signs that read "Use both lanes up to merge point". Using both lanes does help improve the flow. I'm just doing my part. My actions help all of us get to our destinations just a little bit faster, and I continue on my way, not waiting for the accolades from my appreciative fellow motorists.

I totally agree with you. Another merging issue that frustrates me to no end is the on-ramp merge where most people seem to want to merge early and then stop if there is no opening instead of using the whole on-ramp length to get up to speed. :evil: :evil:
STOP??? :o :o :o I've seen strange merges, but stopping? the lane you need to merge into goes 120 mk/h. How are you going to do that?

ToSeek
2005-Feb-15, 08:29 PM
my rule is to get in whatever lane is closed. If construction is forcing 2 lanes into one, then many cars will merge long before the merge point, which opens things up for me. I get to the merge point, merge and off I go. It doesn't always work that way, but most of the time it does.

Local police just asked people who finally learned "zipping" to do just that. They learned to merge one after another, but they merge too soon. They think this is polite, because it differs them from the nuts going 100 till the very end, then honk to get in. Only, if they all would continue on the lane to be closed at a decent speed (as fast as the lane next to them) and only merge at the end, half a mile of extra lane could be used.


I don't see the advantage of using the extra lane when you're going to be down to one lane soon enough anyway. In fact, it ought to be an advantage since as soon as everyone's in one lane, it should be possible to pick up some speed. The only thing that's keeping that from happening is the people who haven't merged yet!

ToSeek
2005-Feb-15, 08:31 PM
STOP??? :o :o :o I've seen strange merges, but stopping? the lane you need to merge into goes 120 mk/h. How are you going to do that?

You wait forever until there's a huge opening that allows you to get up to speed without being rear-ended. This, of course, means that everyone who's gotten backed up behind you has to do the same thing. Come to the Washington, DC, area sometime - we'll show you some mighty fine drivers!

iFire
2005-Feb-15, 08:33 PM
I just love the people who just fly down the shoulder. :evil: I sometimes want to drive half-on the shoulder.

Kristophe
2005-Feb-15, 08:33 PM
I totally agree with you. Another merging issue that frustrates me to no end is the on-ramp merge where most people seem to want to merge early and then stop if there is no opening instead of using the whole on-ramp length to get up to speed. :evil: :evil:

Or they don't want to use the on-ramp to reach highway speeds, and then stop when they hit the very end because they're not going fast enough to merge with the highway traffic. If the highway speed limit is 110 kph, and the highway traffic is going 125 kph, hitting the end of the on-ramp at 50 kph and then wondering why you can't merge without getting rear ended is sort of silly.

Captain Kidd
2005-Feb-15, 08:36 PM
I'll often mark a Weaver-n-Zoomer (a.k.a. Pedals to the Metal as it's either full on the gas or full on the brake) to pace myself against as I'll get in one lane (usually the fast lane) and match whatever the speed is.

Over half the time I'm pacing the Weave-n-Zoom while I'm saving gas and brake pads. Plus it's entertaining watching them cut somebody off to fly around a truck on the right while paying absolutely no attention that the truck is in the process of passing somebody. So they slam the brakes on, cut back behind the truck, cut to the left, fly ahead of the truck and then cut two lanes left. Only to get behind a slow car and be passed by the very truck they just passed. Back to square 1 only much redder in the face and even more gunning for any opening they can find.

Even if they do get out of sight ahead of me, I'll see them a few cars ahead of me on the exit ramp. (My exit's a very popular exit.)

Now there's where I get the most nervous and aggravated. People will ride the far right lane (well only right lane as by this point we're back to two lanes each way) and then cut across at the extreme last second to make the exit. I've almost gotten clipped and outright broadsided multiple times, I guess making it up one more car means something while waiting for the redlight at the bottom of the ramp behind 7 other cars rather than 8.

Gillianren
2005-Feb-15, 08:39 PM
I learned how to drive by crossing the Tacoma-Narrows Bridge every day (which is built using the pylons [I think that's the right term--the big pillar things] of old Galloping Gertie). you could change lanes all you wanted leading up to the bridge, but you weren't going anywhere fast--everybody but me, it seemed, was scared of the bridge, and traffic in both lanes practically stopped until you were on the bridge itself at rush hour.

teddyv
2005-Feb-15, 08:40 PM
STOP??? :o :o :o I've seen strange merges, but stopping? the lane you need to merge into goes 120 mk/h. How are you going to do that?

You would not believe some of the drivers out here. Most European drivers are pretty crazy and fast but the driver training is very good and you can anticipate the drivers, but it seems, in my area a good rule of thumb is "expect the unexpected".

Kristophe
2005-Feb-15, 08:44 PM
I don't understand the drivers here in Ontario. They're out of their minds. Back home, I know exactly what anyone with a local license plate is going to do. Here, I'm pretty sure they just try to run people over. It's insane! Then, they come down East for holidays in the summer and complain about the bad drivers. I can almost literally predict what the drivers here are going to do by asking myself "Which is the most likely way that I would die in this situation?"

Nicolas
2005-Feb-15, 08:44 PM
my rule is to get in whatever lane is closed. If construction is forcing 2 lanes into one, then many cars will merge long before the merge point, which opens things up for me. I get to the merge point, merge and off I go. It doesn't always work that way, but most of the time it does.

Local police just asked people who finally learned "zipping" to do just that. They learned to merge one after another, but they merge too soon. They think this is polite, because it differs them from the nuts going 100 till the very end, then honk to get in. Only, if they all would continue on the lane to be closed at a decent speed (as fast as the lane next to them) and only merge at the end, half a mile of extra lane could be used.


I don't see the advantage of using the extra lane when you're going to be down to one lane soon enough anyway. In fact, it ought to be an advantage since as soon as everyone's in one lane, it should be possible to pick up some speed. The only thing that's keeping that from happening is the people who haven't merged yet!

I'm talking very slow traffic here, 10km/h things (verrrrry common overhere). On a full highway, every m≤ lane should be used. Plus it takes away the possibility of the 100 km/h suicide people on the to-be-closed lane.

pumpkinpie
2005-Feb-15, 08:56 PM
As long as I have a broken white line, there is nothing improper about it. And no, I don't cut anyone off when I finally do merge. Lately I have seen signs that read "Use both lanes up to merge point". Using both lanes does help improve the flow. I'm just doing my part. My actions help all of us get to our destinations just a little bit faster, and I continue on my way, not waiting for the accolades from my appreciative fellow motorists.

I like the idea of "use both lanes" signs. I seem to remember a study done reporting that traffic moved faster when people used both lanes until the merge, and slower if most people merged early and a only a few zipped ahead in the clear lane. (I wish I could remember where or when I heard it so I could search for the source, but I really don't. I could be totally misremembering it!) But if that is the case, I think that installing such signs will lead to people eventually getting used to it, and thus a smoother and quicker merge. Doubt it will happen, though!

Doodler
2005-Feb-15, 10:02 PM
STOP??? :o :o :o I've seen strange merges, but stopping? the lane you need to merge into goes 120 mk/h. How are you going to do that?

You wait forever until there's a huge opening that allows you to get up to speed without being rear-ended. This, of course, means that everyone who's gotten backed up behind you has to do the same thing. Come to the Washington, DC, area sometime - we'll show you some mighty fine drivers!

Don't remind me... There are more than a few times coming around the outer loop of 495 at the BW Parkway interchange where my sorry atheist butt has been close to prayer at the sight of people coming off that merge. Heading down the Inner Loop from 450 to Route 50 isn't much better. And may the deities aid anyone crazy enough to be anywhere near the Wilson Bridge between 5am and 9pm.

paulie jay
2005-Feb-15, 11:37 PM
In Sydney the general rule when merging is that whichever car is ahead has the right of way. This generally means that two lanes merge into one on a "one for one" basis - but there are always those drivers who want to disrupt the pattern :roll: I usually leave a fairly good space in front of me when I drive. I figure that there are always going to be lunatics swerving in front of me at the last minute so I may as well accept it and leave enough space for them to do so safely...


(spelling edit)

Van Rijn
2005-Feb-16, 12:12 AM
On the freeway - and where I live, it is four lanes in one direction, eight lanes total, separated - I use the statistical method of determining what lane to be in. That is: I've learned which lane is usually the fastest, and will OCCASIONALLY make a lane change if it looks like I can go a bit faster. All too often, lane changes definitely do slow me down, so I do it only when it is safe and an apparent "sure thing." Even then, perhaps a third of the time, I find I would have done better not to lane change. It isn't uncommon to have weavers temporarily get ahead, only to soon fall behind.

Maha Vailo
2005-Feb-16, 01:08 AM
I never change lanes in a traffic jam (unless I need to get in a particular lane to make a turn). In fact, it ticks me off when someone switches lanes in the middle of a traffic jam - adds insult to already-stressful situation.

- Maha "in a jam" Vailo

Grey
2005-Feb-16, 02:55 AM
This is purely anecdotal, so take it as that. But I recall driving into a construction zone where the signs started well ahead of the actual merge point, telling drivers to move out of the closed lane. To my surprise, everyone actually did, gradually changing lanes over the course of a mile or two. By the time the lane was closed off, everyone was already out of it, and in spite of the heavy traffic, we only had to slow down a tiny bit. Everyone had already merged when there was no pressure to do so immediately, and it was easier to find a spot to do so without disrupting the traffic flow overmuch. I was astonished at how smoothly it went.

Using every foot of highway isn't the goal. Keeping the flow of traffic moving is. Now, looking at Google for studies that actually observed various behavior, it looks like when traffic is very congested, it is better for everyone to stay in both lanes and merge at the end, largely because it prevents the behavior some of the posters here seem to engage in. :) On the other hand, it also looks like if traffic is flowing quickly, it's better to merge early. The real-time signs that some places are trying out seem designed to give one or the other of these two pieces of advice, depending on what the current traffic situation is.

Enzp
2005-Feb-16, 09:31 AM
There is illegal and there is rude. Legal manouvers can still be rude. I figure anything you do in traffic ought to be something you would do on a sidewalk approaching the door of a building. WOuld you speed up to a trot to get in front of someone about to open the door? If someone were walking faster than you would you change your path to slow them down? At the movies if the rear area of the ticket line was not tight right up, would you cut in if there was a space big enough?

Many times when I change lanes in traffic it is to get out from behind a damned SUV I can't see past.

I used to drive a cab in Washington DC, they drive stupid. The farther north on the east coast you go, the worse it gets. We even came up with terms. There is the DC lane change. That is where you drift halfway over to the next lane, testing the waters so to speak, but holding your place in line. We figure it must be the political influence of fence sitting there.

Then there is the Jersey Yield - this is where you are on a four lane surface street. SOmeone coming out of a parking lot or side street pokes the front half of the car out into the curb lane. You either have to swerve around them, or STOP and let them in.

Next is NYC. They drive like maniacs, but it has a certain purpose. They want to get from point A to pooint B as fast as possible - traffic rules be damned. Drive like they do and it all seems to work.

Then there is Boston. It is more aggresive that New York, but seems to have no purpose. Just driving looney for the sake of driving looney. It is dodge-em cars there. On the other hand the traffic jams there were monumental. They call traffic circles a "rotary" there. The first time I came upon a sign saying "Rotary Traffic Ahead" I imagines spinning cars.

beskeptical
2005-Feb-16, 09:38 AM
But really, use both lanes and merge at the end when traffic is slow seems to me to be the more logical choice.

If traffic is really dead slow, it probably doesn't make a whole lot of difference when you merge. If traffic is moving quickly, then it's better to merge when the opportunity permits so as not to slow things down. But my feeling is that the reason traffic goes from fast to slow is that people merge at the last second, causing people behind them to slam on their brakes. And after that it's slow.True. And it's bad when the lane they are leaving is for through traffic and the one they are waiting until the last minute to get into is not moving at the same speed. My comments about merging every other car at the end of a lane only applies to stop and go traffic.

I don't use the 'cheater's' merging tactics. It isn't worth making someone mad. That is dangerous.

Wally
2005-Feb-16, 02:01 PM
One other thing about freeway driving is that traffic moving the same direction yields to the left. That is if two cars are vying for a spot in a lane between them, the left car has the right of way. The principle also holds when two equal highways merge, cars on the left have right of way. This is the opposite of crossing traffic at intersections where you yield right.

did not know this! 8-[

I always figured it was the car more ahead that had the right to the lane. The reason being the car slightly behind would have the clearer view of the situation. Granted, if the cars are side-by-side, my "rule" is no good. . . :P

cyswxman
2005-Feb-17, 12:51 PM
5 cars at the light constitutes a traffic jam here. 8-[ 8)

Nicolas
2005-Feb-17, 02:55 PM
5 cars at the light constitutes a traffic jam here. 8-[ 8)

:cry:

Overhere radios stopped calling traffic jams under 3 km on most days, because they are too many...

the_shaggy_one
2005-Feb-17, 04:08 PM
I drive for a living, so I see plenty of stupid manouvers. Mostly people around here just aren't paying attention, and have to cut someone off to make an exit, or run a light right after it turns red 'cause the left turn signal is only on long enough to let 2 cars through. The worst is trying to merge onto a highway, you start accellerating, and the cars coming up behind you think it's a race, so they start accelerating also, so you have to go even faster.

The most pleasant (city) driving experience I ever had was in Portland, OR. Slow traffic yielded to the right, trucks stayed in the slow lanes unless they were turning, and there was nothing I would call a traffic jam trying to get across the city at around 5-6pm. I learned after I left that U-turns and passing on the right were illegal there, so I think I must've made quite a few people angry. :lol:

swansont
2005-Feb-17, 05:48 PM
STOP??? :o :o :o I've seen strange merges, but stopping? the lane you need to merge into goes 120 mk/h. How are you going to do that?

You wait forever until there's a huge opening that allows you to get up to speed without being rear-ended. This, of course, means that everyone who's gotten backed up behind you has to do the same thing. Come to the Washington, DC, area sometime - we'll show you some mighty fine drivers!

Unfortunately, I can confirm this observation.

People who drive past the backed-up traffic at the exit ramp, and then cut in; drivers turning right from other than the right-hand lane (I've seen a turn from three lanes over :o); a complete lack of understanding of what "lanes" are and why there are little white lines drawn on the road; the notion that "no parking" doesn't apply if you turn your flashers on; the idea that somehow the sound waves from your horn will move traffic forward. We got 'em all. And that's not counting the taxi cabs.

I attribute to all the "A" type personalities we must have - the idea that the driver can't possibly be inconvenienced by traffic laws or common courtesy, since s/he is much more important than anybody else.

Nicolas
2005-Feb-17, 05:56 PM
STOP??? :o :o :o I've seen strange merges, but stopping? the lane you need to merge into goes 120 mk/h. How are you going to do that?

You wait forever until there's a huge opening that allows you to get up to speed without being rear-ended. This, of course, means that everyone who's gotten backed up behind you has to do the same thing. Come to the Washington, DC, area sometime - we'll show you some mighty fine drivers!

Unfortunately, I can confirm this observation.

People who drive past the backed-up traffic at the exit ramp, and then cut in; drivers turning right from other than the right-hand lane (I've seen a turn from three lanes over :o); a complete lack of understanding of what "lanes" are and why there are little white lines drawn on the road; the notion that "no parking" doesn't apply if you turn your flashers on; the idea that somehow the sound waves from your horn will move traffic forward. We got 'em all. And that's not counting the taxi cabs.

I attribute to all the "A" type personalities we must have - the idea that the driver can't possibly be inconvenienced by traffic laws or common courtesy, since s/he is much more important than anybody else.

Apart from stopping to merge, I recognize them all. In fact, overhere none of the traffic laws apply with your flashers on...some think.

I "like" the following common situation: driving on the second lane, going to the left lane to pass a car, then cutting him of to cross all 3 lanes to reach the exit. Daily business. I also those traffic jam heroes who discovered that extra lane at the extreme right, nobody is there so you can easily go 80 km/h there! (the emergency lane that is) :o

Brady Yoon
2005-Feb-18, 04:12 PM
If you do it at the right time... :P

Careless
2005-Feb-19, 01:24 AM
Then there is the Jersey Yield - this is where you are on a four lane surface street. SOmeone coming out of a parking lot or side street pokes the front half of the car out into the curb lane. You either have to swerve around them, or STOP and let them in.
This is the only way you could ever get anywhere in certain asian third world cities I've been in (short of having a security guard/cop block for you) during the day. They won't even stop for red lights unless they see that you start driving into the intersection.

GeorgeLeRoyTirebiter
2005-Feb-19, 10:08 AM
I like the idea of "use both lanes" signs.

Unfortunately, that wouldn't work where I live. The traffic signs could be 20 feet tall and on fire and most drivers here wouldn't see them. Paint something International Safety Orange and it becomes invisible to almost everyone behind the wheel of a car (sort of like the Somebody Else's Problem field in Life, the Universe, and Everything).