Merging-lane Traffic Jams, A Simple Cure
<<<<< ON THE LEFT: NORMAL DRIVERS WHO PACK THEMSELVES TIGHTLY TOGETHER WHENEVER THE TRAFFIC COMES TO A STOP. NOBODY CAN MERGE EXCEPT AT THE END OF THE JAM. NOTE THEIR LOW SPEED.
ON THE RIGHT >>>>> DRIVERS WITH UNUSUAL BEHAVIOR: THEY ENCOURAGE OTHERS TO MERGE AHEAD OF THEM, AND THEY TEND TO MAINTAIN LARGE SPACES AHEAD, EVEN IF TRAFFIC SLOWS TO A CRAWL. MERGING IS EASY. SEE HOW MUCH FASTER THEY GO?
Traffic jams often occur on highways wherever two lanes must merge into one. Lanes of cars cannot merge if there are no large gaps between cars. Therefor, drivers who create large gaps between cars will ease this type of traffic jam.
To ease this type of jam:
- Maintain a large space ahead of your car.
- Encourage one, two even three cars to merge ahead of you.
- If traffic slows to a complete stop, KEEP TWO CAR-LENGTHS OF SPACE OPEN AHEAD OF YOU.
- Never "punish" merging drivers by closing your gap.
Amazingly enough, it is not necessary that EVERYONE do this. If only a few drivers will maintain large gaps during heavy traffic, then merging traffic is not forbidden, and the situation in the left-hand diagram can be prevented.
Yes you're right, you cannot eliminate every problem by simply making a big gap in front of your car. When there are too many cars on the road, traffic slows down. But if we use these special driving habits, the smaller jams can be erased, and stop-and-go traffic can be smoothed out. Since many traffic jams are caused by merging lanes, many traffic jams can be improved by the actions of just one driver.
Source : SmartMotorist