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Defensive Driving Tip On Merging Into Another Lane

Driving safely on the highway takes a lot of concentration, knowledge and effort on everybodyís part these days. Knowing the meaning of traffic signs is a very important part of defensive driving, and not knowing the meaning of any one traffic sign should be an important reason to stay off of the road and retrain your ability on understanding what each and every highway sign means for the sake of your well being and others. I do a lot of highway driving and it sure gets pretty scary out there. Iíve been driving for over thirty-five years, 18 professionally, and itís not getting easier. As a matter of fact, drivers are getting bolder. According to the dictionary, yield means to give up to another and or give up to pressure.

I think a busy highway or any traffic would be reason to yield to others coming from behind at a higher speed that is carrying 2,000lbs or greater of moving pressure. I really never did stop and calculate exactly how many tons of moving metal could possibly be coming your way, if you know what I mean. Merging onto a highway with flowing traffic can be a very dangerous maneuver, especially if you do not know what the meaning of a yield sign is, or what one looks like. The last time I looked in a defensive driving book, and Iím sure they are not out to trick us on any changes. It means yield for other traffic (give up to another and or give up to pressure.

), or stop if necessary! So why do a lot of vehicle drivers assume that highway traffic has to let them in if they run out of roadway when theyíre trying to merge on? The key to safe driving is not to assume anything. The proper way to merge onto a highway should be a quickset plan. The path ahead of you should be clear and have a long enough roadway to allow you to get up to the speed of highway traffic. The following is a defensive driving procedure on merging into traffic safely. When the highway traffic coming up along side your vehicle is behind you, put your signal on and quickly accelerate your vehicle up to the same speed if the path ahead of you is clear. The goal here is to get up to the same speed as traffic so they cannot catch you. If youíre doing the same speed as the traffic behind you, they canít catch you unless theyíre speeding and or your slowing down. If you think you cannot accelerate to their speed, ease off the gas pedal and let the vehicles go by, then quickly pick up speed again to stay ahead of the traffic coming up from the lane you want to merge into, if it is clear ahead of you. When necessary, stop if you have to let all traffic go by and merge in only after the lane you want to merge into is clear. The vehicle traffic in the lane you want to merge into should not have to brake to let you in.

Sometimes you will find a courteous driver easing back on the gas pedal to let you in. Quickly accelerate and move in, only if safe and clear ahead of your vehicle. This maneuver should be practiced with a recognized driving school instructor, or an adult with a lot of driving experience. It is a very important part of defensive driving.


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