Safe Speed Forums

The campaign for genuine road safety
It is currently Fri Feb 21, 2020 14:06

All times are UTC [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 183 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 ... 10  Next
Author Message
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 17:38 
Offline
User

Joined: Sun Mar 07, 2004 13:10
Posts: 29
Location: North Bristol
This is something that came up on my IAM observed run earlier, and it provoked a bit of a (polite of course) debate between myself and my observer. He knows I'm posting this (we discussed the reasoning both sides in our debrief), it's to get a consensus of opinion from the "regulars" (and resident Traffic Officers) more than anything:

Take an average dual-carriageway section of road. In this instance the limit was 40mph, and you couldn't safely do much faster than that (possibly 50mph in suitably quiet conditions). Two lanes of traffic and signs indicating Lane 1 is to close in a few hundred yards or so. Cars then start queuing up in Lane 2, with the result that Lane 1 is empty road.

So then, on one side of the fence (that of my observer): Lane 1 is dead road allowing good progress to be made at 40mph or so without sat bumper-to-bumper in Lane 2. Once you get 100 yards or so short of the closure, indicate right and wait for someone to let you in. Friendly wave of thanks, and you've just made good progress past (in this case) 20 or so cars. Even if it takes a few cars to let you in, you're still up.

On the other side of the fence, and I have always passionately believed this: Queue. Period. Other drivers are being patient and waiting, so we should too. Ok, so you have dead road - but it's better to have a bit of empty road and be "seen" to be patient than fly past a queue and "push in" at the end. Courtesy rules here.

I'll be the first to admit that in the past (and before we had this discussion) I would usually be the first to drive a little "defensively" when the "queujumpers" try to push in at the end. (Anyone familiar with Bristol - think of Highwood Lane heading towards Patchway after a busy day at The Mall, and the argy-bargy by the chicane outside the fire station, for the concept I'm getting at here)

One comment that I've been pondering on, is this: A lot of techniques employed within advanced driving, can cause other drivers to be annoyed. Not at the manner in which you're driving, but at the fact you're making unobtrusive and clean progress. Applying this theory to the situation I've described, the "Q-jumping" is this progress. I'm absolutely sure this is meant with the best of intentions, but it's something I'm now reflecting on a little.

I (and my observer, I'm sure) would be interested in the thoughts of others in here. I'd also be especially interested in the attitudes of the IAM/RoADA-qualified.

Thanks


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 18:00 
Offline
User
User avatar

Joined: Sat Apr 23, 2005 08:22
Posts: 2618
I think that your observer has a valid point in theory, but in a real life situation I would disagree with him. In an ideal world traffic would use both lanes up until 100 yards or so before the closure and then filter nicely down into one lane (I think its called the 'zipper' effect?). There would be some slowing of the traffic obviously but it would still flow. However, this requires cooperation and good observation from all drivers involved.

In real life, as you stated yourself, those who have got into L2 in good time will resent the fact that you've jumped the queue and more than likely will block you from moving over. So you might have passed 20 or so cars, but by the time you've slowed to avoid the closure and found a gap or someone willing to let you into L2, you've forced the traffic you're joining to slow down. This causes the wave effect along the line of traffic in L2 and slows the whole lot down even further.

I'm not IAM or ROSPA and I've never looked into their training, but IMO both of these should be concentrating not only on the safety and progress of the individual, but also on the general flow of traffic. Staying in L1 may improve your own personal situation, but it has a detremental effect on the general traffic flow (for whatever reason) and so IMO is the wrong thing to do.

Of course, the counter argument is that you've showed good forward planning and observation by moving into L2 in good time, and by continuing in L1 you've ignored (or haven't noticed) the warning signs and haven't planned well enough ahead :twisted:

_________________
Science won over religion when they started installing lightning rods on churches.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 18:13 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2004 06:46
Posts: 16903
Location: Safe Speed
The late merge is the right way to go for everyone.

* It makes the total queue length shorter (less wasted roadspace) and may avoid junctions further back from being obstructed.

* It uses the ONLY definition of a merge point. Any scheme that expects people to merge an queue from 'further back' is vague about where the merge point really is.

The only downsides are:

* We tend to have the wrong habits - many British drivers merge at an early stage. This is an education or signing issue.

* Some might get upset by behaviour that they see as 'queue jumping'. This is the serious problem - we don't want to provoke anger. However education will fix this too in time. For now I'll often merge 100 to 200 yards early as a best balance between causing agro and using road space properly.

In the future we all need to learn to zip merge, and the sooner DfT starts giving us such sensible messages the better.

_________________
Paul Smith
Our scrap speed cameras petition got over 28,000 sigs
The Safe Speed campaign demands a return to intelligent road safety


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 18:22 
Offline
Banned
Banned

Joined: Thu Apr 15, 2004 12:47
Posts: 2291
japitts wrote:
Queue. Period.


No way. The whole point of driving is to get somewhere, and if the road is free, use it to get closer to where you want to be. If people want to sit there and stew in their own juices, that’s their own lookout. I like to poodle down to the front, nice and slow like, and then nip in near the front, indicating of course.

The British way is to be all confrontational and tailgatey at 85 mph and all polite at 5 mph - it makes no sense at all. That’s my advice to everybody – poodle down to the front if you can, and even up the lanes.

_________________
I stole this .sig


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 18:30 
Offline
User

Joined: Sun Mar 07, 2004 13:10
Posts: 29
Location: North Bristol
basingwerk wrote:
japitts wrote:
Queue. Period.


No way. The whole point of driving is to get somewhere, and if the road is free, use it to get closer to where you want to be. If people want to sit there and stew in their own juices, that’s their own lookout. I like to poodle down to the front, nice and slow like, and then nip in near the front, indicating of course.

The British way is to be all confrontational and tailgatey at 85 mph and all polite at 5 mph - it makes no sense at all. That’s my advice to everybody – poodle down to the front if you can, and even up the lanes.


Hmmm, some interesting thoughts. I wonder then, if a sensible compromise is to use the road space but "poodle" rather than "fly" down Lane 1 and start to merge in, say, 10 car lengths or so back from the merge point. That way, you're avoiding the perception of queue-jumping.

That if everyone did this, you'd have two evenly-filled lanes, is an interesting one. On the one hand, this is a "great in theory, not so great in practice" situation. On the other, I suppose - yeah - if people want to sit in the lanes then it's their lookout.

EDIT: The point about causing a ripple of brake lights in Lane 2 as the one or two cars merge in at the end, is the only point I'm having trouble "putting away". Rightly or wrongly, for as long as the majority of cars queue in Lane 2, this seems a valid point. But perhaps this is a case of "is something right, just because the majority do it?"


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 18:42 
Offline
Gold Member
Gold Member
User avatar

Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2004 22:35
Posts: 643
Location: South Wales
It is quite common on the continent to merge late, but they are instructed to do so in many cases and I think as such it becomes habit.

I am in full favour of this method and have no problem letting people in late if I am in the open lane.

For the British it is seen as pushing in, we after all the worlds best queue builders :). I think where possible (established road works etc) then a sign indicating lane closure with a "stay in lane" sign attached, then closer to lane closure another sign "merge in turn". This I think would work for Brits as they are following instructions, not "pushing in", and hopefully in time would work in areas not signed as such.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 18:42 
Offline
Member
Member

Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2004 14:04
Posts: 2325
Location: The interweb
basingwerk wrote:

The British way is to be all confrontational and tailgatey at 85 mph and all polite at 5 mph - it makes no sense at all. That’s my advice to everybody – poodle down to the front if you can, and even up the lanes.


What the......

I'm agreeing with Basingwhatsit.

*falls off chair*

I'm all for using all of the road. It does need a huge change in driver mentality but the more of us that do it the more will tag along. We could use some help form the Think! advertising budget though.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 18:49 
Offline
User
User avatar

Joined: Wed May 11, 2005 20:28
Posts: 1267
Location: not too far in front, not too far behind.
I think Paul had it right when he said the issue was signage (or included signage or something). We have road signs saying 'lane closed in 45* miles' and people still merge in now rather than later. I think the signs would be better only about 150 yards at most from the pinch point, and the signs should say in large letters "Merge In Turn" perhaps with a drawing for the hard of thinking.

It bothers me a lot, I tend to drive in lane 1 most of the time unless overtaking, so I get slowed down hundreds of yards earlier than I need to. But then I realise that there is no reason to raise blood pressure about it and stop worrying.

* alright that was an exaggeration.

_________________
COAST Not just somewhere to keep a beach.

A young loner on a crusade to champion the cause of the innocent, the helpless, the powerless, in a world of criminals who operate above the law.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 19:16 
Offline
Friend of Safe Speed
Friend of Safe Speed
User avatar

Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2004 23:09
Posts: 6735
Location: Stockport, Cheshire
The Highways Agency are now erecting signs saying "Merge in Turn" - for example there are some in the current M60 roadworks.

I strongly support zip-merging as the fairest and most efficient means of dealing with the situation - the IAM have urged the government to make it the official recommedation in the Highway Code, but so far without success.

_________________
"Show me someone who says that they have never exceeded a speed limit, and I'll show you a liar, or a menace." (Austin Williams - Director, Transport Research Group)

Any views expressed in this post are personal opinions and may not represent the views of Safe Speed


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 19:54 
Offline
Life Member
Life Member

Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2004 13:50
Posts: 2643
basingwerk wrote:
No way. The whole point of driving is to get somewhere, and if the road is free, use it to get closer to where you want to be. If people want to sit there and stew in their own juices, that’s their own lookout. I like to poodle down to the front, nice and slow like, and then nip in near the front, indicating of course.


Are you really BW, or are you someone else who stole his login? :wink:

For once, I agree with you totally. It's no use queuing early, as you just end up with a queue stretching for miles back - and people approaching from the back may have no idea that the lane is closed ahead, and so be more-or-less forced to use the empty lane.
What's even worse is when you have lane 3 closed on a motorway - what normally happens is that drivers in L3 pull into L2 early, so L2 slows down and forms a long queue. But nobody thinks of moving into L1, so the nett result is a long queue of near-stationary traffic in L2, with lanes 1 and 3 virtually empty. :roll: As Paul said, education and proper signage is what's required.

japitts wrote:
think of Highwood Lane heading towards Patchway after a busy day at The Mall, and the argy-bargy by the chicane outside the fire station


Yes, I know that road well, and it's terrible. I normally go a few miles out of my way by going onto the M5 - just to avoid it.
They should really get rid of that stupid chicane - end of problem.

_________________
Only when ideology, prejudice and dogma are set aside does the truth emerge - Kepler


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 20:18 
Offline
Member
Member

Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2004 00:11
Posts: 764
Location: Sofa
Another vote for merging in turn near the obstruction. I posted a thread a while back about a problem caused by a failure to merge in turn. See here

Of course, if people stopped getting in lane too early and zip-merged just before the obstruction it'd be impossible for anyone to jump the queue in the first place. (except for bikers but we don't queue :wink: )

You need a sign saying USE BOTH LANES back at the point where the traffic first becomes aware of the obstruction ahead and a MERGE IN TURN NOW sign where the merge should take place. A MERGE IN TURN AHEAD might be useful on the approach, depending on the road. This system was used successfully for years on the on-ramp to the Kingston Bridge in Glasgow. I really don't understand why it's not used more often, but my conversation with the road works guy mentioned on the other thread suggests that it's down to issues with approved signage. Perhaps one of our members with traffic management experience can clarify?

_________________
Less Kodak, more Kojak.
In times of deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 21:21 
Offline
Member
Member

Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 00:24
Posts: 2400
Location: Kendal, Cumbria
Calling all Moderators!

Can we get this thread re-titled please, as "Basingwerk agrees with the rest of the world on something"... :lol:

(Another vote for zip-merging from me of course)

_________________
CSCP Latin for beginners...
Ticketo ergo sum : I scam therefore I am!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 22:03 
Offline
Camera Partnership Staff
Camera Partnership Staff
User avatar

Joined: Tue Apr 26, 2005 19:48
Posts: 1995
go right up to the end of the queue and put light on they always let you in

_________________
now retired


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 22:08 
Offline
Member
Member

Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2005 02:50
Posts: 2868
Location: Dorset
camera operator wrote:
go right up to the end of the queue and put light on they always let you in

Which lights? You aren't suggesting illegal use of a blue/amber warning becon are you? :P
I wondered why talivans have them, they are never used as a notification that they are parked in a dangerous spot.

_________________
Andrew.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 22:12 
Offline
Gold Member
Gold Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Dec 08, 2004 14:26
Posts: 4364
Location: Hampshire/Wiltshire Border
What do you think of the HGV drivers who, on approaching a lane merge, position themselves to block both lanes to prevent anyone in the clear lane reaching the front?

This seems quite a common phenomenon now.

_________________
Malcolm W.
The views expressed in this post are personal opinions and do not represent the views of Safespeed.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 22:13 
Offline
Camera Partnership Staff
Camera Partnership Staff
User avatar

Joined: Tue Apr 26, 2005 19:48
Posts: 1995
me never

another little favourite of mine, coming off the motorway dedicated left and right hand lanes onto rounabout, left hand lane always queing, slip up the right hander around the rounabout 360 and awayyou go

_________________
now retired


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 22:41 
Offline
Member
Member

Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2005 02:50
Posts: 2868
Location: Dorset
malcolmw wrote:
What do you think of the HGV drivers who, on approaching a lane merge, position themselves to block both lanes to prevent anyone in the clear lane reaching the front?

I think they are blocking the highway or whatever the relevant law is.
"How's my driving?"

_________________
Andrew.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 22:42 
Offline
Banned
Banned

Joined: Thu Apr 15, 2004 12:47
Posts: 2291
malcolmw wrote:
What do you think of the HGV drivers who position themselves to block both lanes


I think they have tiny genital organs, and this is thier compensation.

_________________
I stole this .sig


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 22:51 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2004 06:46
Posts: 16903
Location: Safe Speed
basingwerk wrote:
malcolmw wrote:
What do you think of the HGV drivers who position themselves to block both lanes


I think they have tiny genital organs, and this is thier compensation.


:hehe:

I do believe our basingwerk has undergone a metamorphosis...

_________________
Paul Smith
Our scrap speed cameras petition got over 28,000 sigs
The Safe Speed campaign demands a return to intelligent road safety


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 22:55 
Offline
User

Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2005 18:39
Posts: 346
basingwerk wrote:
malcolmw wrote:
What do you think of the HGV drivers who position themselves to block both lanes


I think they have tiny genital organs, and this is thier compensation.


I think it would be such a laugh if the car they attempt to block is an unmarked unit.....oh, yeh :twisted:

It's not up to us - or other 'normal' road users to dictate/enforce what speed, or which lane we or anybody else drives in. That's a matter for plod!


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 183 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 ... 10  Next

All times are UTC [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group
[ Time : 0.420s | 11 Queries | GZIP : Off ]