Q&A - Merging Speed and Bike Lanes on Road Tests

Q&A ImageI have road test soon and there are some rules that are confusing me:

1. How do I know speed to merge highway if there is no speed limit sign.

e.g. merging from Londsdale:

the speed on highway is 80km/h but there is no speed limit sign so I don't know the speed at the highway, so will I fail when merging 80km/h?

2. When there is green lane for cyclists without white solid or dashed line, can I drive this lane or I should avoid and use this lane only when turning right ? eg.

Can you please clarify this for me?


I can answer those questions!

Hi Elektro255, it's my guess that you're planning on taking your Class 5 (or possibly Class 4) Road Test in North Vancouver - Class 7 wouldn't have a Freeway portion.

How do I know speed to merge highway if there is no speed limit sign.

If you think about it, any driver merging onto a highway in BC is in the same quandary.  That black and white sign you can see on the right side of the ramp only indicates that your vehicle must be capable of at least 60 km/h in order to use the freeway, but the actual posted speed limit is not going to be visible until after you have completed your merge and proceeded (at least at the situation shown, eastbound from Lonsdale) two or three hundred metres further down the freeway.

So the default speed limit, per Section 146 (1) is 80 km/h.  So this will be your target speed for successful and legal entry, doing your best not to exceed it of course.  I always recommend that drivers in this situation get their left signal going early rather than late, in order to maximize the message to the traffic on the freeway that you're arriving and merging.  And it's worth keeping in mind that the freeway drivers will probably respond to the way a merging vehicle is being driven; if the driver is slow, tentative, using the brakes unnecessarily, then he/she is not likely to have a successful merge (interesting statistic, 90% of merging collisions in North Vancouver are rear-enders on the ramp and don't involve the vehicles already on the freeway).  But if a driver is brisk and confident in their approach, they are much more likely to be assimilated into the traffic flow; and that ability to merge smoothly is paramount in the mind of the Driver Examiner who is more likely to be paying attention to the traffic situation around you than your speedometer reading.

Something to be aware of on that ramp and others in North Vancouver - it actually commences with a posted 50 km/h speed limit, as the first portion (up to around the St. Georges intersection) is considered to still be a municipal street.  So don't stand on the go pedal until you're clearly on the acceleration section of the ramp.

When there is green line for cyclists without white solid or dashed line, can I drive this line or I should avoid and use this line only when turning right ? eg.

Yeah, that's a weird one - and it does get used on some of the test routes, the approach likely being south on Lonsdale followed by a right turn into West 13th.  But if you take another look, you'll see that the right hand lane is shared, it is both a vehicle lane and a bicycle lane - there's even a warning sign on the right to advise vehicle drivers and cylists that it is single file (which is viable, as it's downhill so the cyclists can keep up easily enough).  So a right turn into that street must enter that lane.  And a driver in the left lane intending a right turn at Chesterfield must first change lanes in order to legally make the next maneuver.

You'll note that the white line between the two westbound lanes is dashed throughout the block, to allow lane changes to be executed anywhere along it.

Hope this helps, best of luck on your Road Test!

Google Ads