Cardinal Sins Of Demerging Traffic

In the past, I’ve written about how to merge in traffic and today I have another similar road travesty – not demerging from through lanes of traffic into additional lanes in an appropriate manner.

There isn’t a road rule that I’m aware of that says, if you are exiting or turning and an additional lane is provided that you must do so as soon as possible. In the majority of cases, drivers will pull into the additional lane provided as soon as it becomes available according to the shape of the road or the line markings – but from time to time you come across people that don’t do that.

While travelling west bound on the Smith Street Motorway on the back end of peak hour traffic, a driver wanted to turn right into Parklands Drive. As they approached the two newly added turn right lanes, they indicated their intention with ample time but when it came to actually change lanes – they were particularly tardy.

That wouldn’t be a problem if they’d kept up the same speed as the through traffic but they had already begun to break, slowing in traffic accelerating to 100kph down to a little under 60kph. As you can imagine, everyone in the right most through lane braked quickly and the long stream of traffic compressed directly behind me until the driver finally left the right lane and joined the two turning right lanes.

The moral of this particular story is simple, if you’re demerging from through traffic into additionally added lanes – do so as early as possible. If the road and traffic conditions permit, consider demerging at whatever speed the through traffic is doing and braking within the turning right lanes. If that isn’t possible, slow down only as much as you have to while in the through lanes and complete the braking in the additional lanes.

Follow those simple driving tips and your fellow motorists will have a much smoother commute and think the world of you for being considerate.