One of the biggest complaints about the state I live in is that no one knows how to merge. Which is partially true. Of course, a portion of the people do know how to merge, but there those few who ruin it for everyone. Merging onto the freeway can be tricky at times, especially if the traffic is thick. Still there is a right way to do things and a wrong way. Or as I’m going to put it, the good, the bad, and the ugly.
A good merge combines several key elements. 1. You, and everyone around, you is quickly getting to freeway speed. 2. Those around you merge a few hundred yards before their lane ends so they don’t cut anyone off. 3. The people on the freeway recognize that new cars are coming onto the road and they adjust their courses accordingly. Can you imagine the smooth merging that would happen if all of these things were applied? No one would be cutting anyone off and everyone would be going decent speeds, so their wouldn’t be impatient people trying to swerve through the lanes.
The worst thing about merging is when a lane is about to end, and no car is inclined to let anyone else in. They are in their spot, and they are not moving. It’s a selfishness that really can’t be found anywhere else in society. Of course, those merging should be aware of those on the freeway and try to blend into traffic rather than displacing anyone. But sometimes the traffic is such that it cannot be helped and those around you should be giving the same courtesy that you would to someone walking down the street. But most drivers don’t think like that. They think they are in the fortress that is their car, which makes everyone around them in-human. Therefore, you can treat other drivers like robots and not real people. This is the cause of much road rage and the crumbling of the merge.
As if the bad wasn’t bad enough, merging can get even worse. It can get ugly. The guy in front of you could be going 55 when the speed limit is 75 just a few hundred feet ahead of you. The guy next to you could be sitting in your blind spot when his lane is about to end. The guy of the freeway could be refusing to speed up or move over even though you are clearly boxed in with your blinker on. To make matters worse, the guy behind you is nipping at your bumper as if you have control over the situation. *shudders* Not to mention, those merges where all the merging lanes are abolished and everyone on the freeway has to merge to one lane less than there was before. It’s the merge within the merge that causes a stall. That’s when I’m longing for the good world that will never be.
When comes to merging, above all, you should be thinking about all of the drivers around you. Not just you and where you need to go. Be sure to speed up, or slow down or move over if it’s for the benefit of the other drivers. Think of drivers as humans, then perhaps you won’t be so quick to not let someone else in.