Watching from the Right Lane
I'm sure that you have already determined that if I don't write this column based on reader requests, I write about something that I have seen happen around me in traffic. This column is no different, and it is about a behaviour that struck me when I was using the freeway in Vancouver recently. How could six vehicles traveling bumper to bumper in an acceleration lane hope to fit into the one or two vehicle sized space in the right lane?
Yes, I know that if I am in the right lane and I can see something like this happening I am supposed to move over to my left and make room for these drivers. Often you can do so, but sometimes the left lane is full and it is not safe to go there.
What now? If the drivers in the acceleration lane planned ahead, they would leave enough room between them to facilitate traffic already in the right lane so that we could interleave like playing cards in a shuffle. That also assumes that they have matched speed instead of hesitating and that impatient driver in spot number four doesn't jump the solid line and "win" by getting there first.
Why do we drive the way we do, and what does that say about us? That is the subject of a book by Tom Vanderbilt that looks like it will be an interesting read for me this winter. I often try to find other points of view to either validate my own or learn why I should change.
A better understanding of those around me in traffic just might help me make a collision saving decision one day.