Although some approach highway driving like a high-speed free-for-all, mature and safety-conscious drivers will follow the rules of the road and treat fellow motorists with respect. Reckless driving could not only result in a speeding ticket and spiked auto insurance rates, but an accident could easily threaten passengers' lives.
Mastering the art of merging
One of the most intimidating aspects of highway driving is merging. It can be difficult to simultaneously watch for oncoming vehicles, change lanes, and get up to an appropriate speed, especially during rush hour. Some commuters can become highly aggressive and have no problem cutting off other drivers, increasing the chances of a collision.
Frustration and anger are not the only factors that make the highway such a manic place to drive. According to the Globe and Mail, confusion can play a big role in creating the hectic atmosphere of these major roads. The source suggested that if drivers refocused on the rules of the highway, there would be less chaos, and less uncertainty and fear related to knowing who has the right of way. Misunderstanding traffic etiquette could be the cause of many avoidable issues on the road.
"Those on the highway and those merging are to make sure that it's done safely and without incident," Teresa Di Felice, director of driver education for the Canadian Automobile Association told the news source. "The reality is that in standstill traffic it's almost impossible to enter the highway safely without the co-operation of vehicles on the highway. You can try to merge, but if no one's letting you in or you try to force your way in, it could be a recipe for a collision."
Courtesy is key
The Globe and Mail concluded its examination of the highway merge by suggesting that driving should be thought of as a team sport if commuters want to cut down on their morning dose of stress. Drivers with larger vehicles should try to avoid dominating smaller cars and be particularly conscious of the extra space they take up on the road.
According to the Art of Manliness, good manners on the road can make driving safer and more pleasant for every motorist involved. Each driver can do their part to make sure everyone on the road remains relaxed and secure. For example, passing vehicles in the left lane should not drive too slowly - after signaling, good drivers will make their moves with speed and confidence to ensure that others know what they are trying to do. When not merging or passing other cars, drivers should be sure to maintain a steady, but safe speed on the highway to avoid holding up traffic or forcing others to perform unexpected evasive maneuvers.