You are approaching the construction area and there is a sign indicating that the left lane will end a few miles away. There is a lot of traffic, but you can see the opening and move to the right lane. As you roam, the driver on your left will pass by. Miles ahead, you finally reach the confluence and the drivers in the left lane make their move. Your pulse will be faster. You pull up the car in front of you and keep no one out. Are you right or are you lucky that you didn’t escalate anything?
If the traffic is light, merging is easy. However, if you move early when the opening is first displayed, it will fail with medium to heavy traffic. You can increase efficiency by using both lanes for as long as possible. It’s easy? You are welcome.
Transportation experts almost agree that the best way to combine two crowded lanes is with a technique called zipper merging. The driver will use both lanes until just before the end of one, after which the zipper teeth will join together. One from this side and the other from that side, merging at the minimum speed possible.
When this expert-approved pattern is tested on the highway, the results are clearly mixed. However, more states are encouraging zipper mergers and driver education, and even making it a law.
Driving is a complex task that requires concentration. If things go well along the way, such as traffic lights, road conditions, and weather, everything goes well. Stress is probably the result when they get in the way of us. And when another driver is the cause of that stress, it can be furious.
We call it road rage, but it’s a serious problem and can lead to accidents and even violence. It can come from something as simple as someone hunting us down, braking too hard, honking, blinking lights, passing by, or neglecting to use turn signals. there is. But some on the road seem as furious as the merge above. According to a study by the Texas Transportation Institute, more than half of the major sources of stress associated with automobiles are due to the difficulty of merging.
I posted a description of Zipper Merge to a group of car enthusiasts on Facebook. video Explained the technique and asked for public comments. Many said they would move into the passing lane as soon as possible and got angry when others speeded up to the last moment. Some have vowed to escape the road by anyone who took this route. One respondent said that the best argument against the zipper merger in the United States is that too many dangerous fools have pistols and are willing to use them.
Transportation experts are keen on zip merging and have statistics to back it up.Minnesota Transport Bureau Quote four benefits: Reduces speed difference between two lanes, reduces traffic backup by up to 40%, reduces congestion at interchanges and creates the feeling that lanes are moving more fairly. The Texas Transportation Institute has found that the zipper merge strategy delays the start of congestion at the merge point by about 14 minutes and reduces the maximum convoy by 1,800 feet.
In some states, the law is zippered. In 2020, Illinois mandated the inclusion of zipper integration in the Road Regulations Handbook. Violators who prevent the merger of others are subject to fines.
“The law clearly stipulates that each driver slows down and positions so that people can actually meet,” Sgt said. Illinois State Police Delilah Garcia.
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The North Carolina House has passed a bill requiring the integration of zippers when the lanes are merged into one. Bills that have not yet passed the Senate will also require the driver’s license and driver’s license handbook to include a zipper merger.
Democratic Rep. Brian Turner sponsored the bill. He commute more than 200 miles from Asheville to Raleigh each week and spends a lot of time on the North Carolina freeways.
“Everyone who travels long distances to get to Raleigh knows that the most frustrating thing on the road is the one who slows down in the left lane,” Turner quoted during his civil days in Asheville. I told the House Committee to be there. “The second frustrating thing is when you merge two lanes into one lane and everyone backs up in one lane.”
If the bill is passed, it can be difficult to enforce. However, even without penalty, it may at least encourage the driver to adopt zipper merging.
For all these efforts, the action is still considered rude by many. They feel that drivers who continue in closed lanes are disconnecting in front of them, and many are angry and refuse to leave the room, waving their fists and wielding their weapons. It can get worse. According to the American Psychological Association, the killings of 30 people each year are associated with road anger.
Road signs that require the driver to use both lanes to the confluence can help guide the driver to better behavior. The Colorado Department of Transportation has discovered that drivers have successfully merged in front of the construction site only if a large number of guide signs have been installed both well in front of the work area and at the confluence. There is an article “Merge points using both lanes”. Other states are beginning to add signs as well.
Michigan writer Lance Aldrich, who countered those who refused to line up early, said: They see someone who slips into the last moment as an intruder trying to steal something that is legitimately theirs. Perhaps it may work if the zipper method was taught from a very early age and shown to be in the public good. But otherwise, don’t even think about pushing it in front of me. “
Stress-free path through load rage, “zip merge”, and traffic
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