So I know you hate tailgaters... ?

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by TeacherShelly, Jul 27, 2009.

  1. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    I have a question about highway/freeway driving. What is an appropriate way to indicate to a slower vehicle in the fast lane to move over?

    If I approach a slower car from behind, we're both in the fast lane, and they are going the same speed or slower than the cars in the next lane, is there an appropriate way to ask them to move over?

    What if they don't respond to your fast approach, your constant presence in their rear view mirror, your brights, ...

    This is a question especially about drivers who appear to have noticed you but also appear to have no idea they should move over.

    Thanks!
     
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  3. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    I think if they don't move after several people are passing them in the next lane, there isn't much you can do except try to get around them.

    Brighting someone to move seems dangerous. I wouldn't do that.
     
  4. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    KU_alum, thanks... I wonder if you keep your eyebrows up and a smile on your face, could the brights be just a request and not an incrimination of the slower person's bad lane manners?
     
  5. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    Ha! Maybe! Funny image.
     
  6. Superteacher81

    Superteacher81 Comrade

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    Try to get around them. Or try to make a "move over" motion with your hand and hope they see it in their rear view mirror. I don't like the bright lights thing either.
     
  7. WindyCityGal606

    WindyCityGal606 Enthusiast

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    I just get back in the left lane and go around them. It's not worth getting other drivers upset. You never know who's out there these days. Just go around and let them drive where they want. If I'm tailgated in town, I just signal and pull over to the curbside and let them pass. Not worth any trouble. People get very bold and careless behind the wheel and that can put so many of us in danger in the split of a second.
     
  8. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    Just to clarify, I'm talking about when I'm driving in the #1 (fast) lane and come up behind a slower driver, going the same or slower than the #2 lane... That driver does not have to get over (I think "Slower Traffic Keep Left" is more of a good manners thing), but I'd like to politely suggest that they move over. Is there any way to?
     
  9. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Personally, the tactics the Op suggested are not polite. I hate people that come screaming in behind me and sit on my tail, flash their brights to get me to go faster. If I am already going the speed limit, you are not going to force me to move just because you want to beak the law. Of course, I am not usually in that fast lane unless I have no place else to go. I will usually move over as soon as I can, but I have been known to move over just a tad bit slower if you are being an obnoxious driver behind me. My question is...unless you are in labor and about to give birth...what is the gosh darn rush to speed down the highway?
     
  10. WindyCityGal606

    WindyCityGal606 Enthusiast

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    Oh I meant I just get back in the right lane and go around. LOL I didn't realize I wrote left instead of right! School's been out a month and I've forgotten my left from my right.
    Still.....I would go around and let it be. I don't know of any "polite" way to tell someone else to follow the rules of the road.
     
  11. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    Let me set the scene more clearly, since I really am trying to be polite and good mannered when I drive...... I'm tooling up the highway in the #1 lane. A slower car is also in the #1 lane although they are going the same speed or a bit slower than the cars in the #2 lane. I don't scream, just close the gap as math requires when I'm going faster than the other car. Everyone is going within +/- 5 of the speed limit, but the car in front of me is going slower or the same as the cars in the #2 lane. There is no one as far as the eye can see in front of them. If they moved over, everything would be smooth sailing for all of us. Instead, they sit there. Not cooperating, just being there. For reasons that are not obvious, except that there is no law requiring them to have good driving manners and move over.

    So, in this case, how can I politely, without causing them to dig their heels in and remain forever in the fast lane without going fast, indicate that I'd really love for them to let me by?
     
  12. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    Oh, haha! I get it now.

    Darn it!
     
  13. Anne wmcosuvamu

    Anne wmcosuvamu Companion

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    I HATE tailgaters.

    It's quite dangerous and in many states / countries illegal to pass on the right. If you come flying up behind someone going, say 75 in the fast lane (faster than the speed limit and perhaps faster than many people in the right lane), and try to "slingshot" around them, it may be at the exact moment they decide to get back in the right lane. Wham. High speed crash.

    This almost happened to me the other day. Speed limit is 70, I was going 75. I had just passed a few cars going about 65. I was in the left lane and glanced in my rearview seeing a few cars coming back up behind me. By the time I turned on my turn signal and was about to move over, a *&$*&%*&$ guy in a *&#&#$*& sports car came flying up behind me, into the right lane, and back to the left. He must have been going at least 95. I never saw him until I looked to my right to get over (a precaution many drivers do not take if there wasn't anyone in the rearview a few seconds ago). He did not appear to be in labor.

    I am a moderately fast driver. I drive about 5-10 mph over and pass some people on the road. Many other people drive 10+ mph over and pass me. I realize this and try to stick to the right lane, but if I'm passing someone, even if you're tailgating me, I will not move over until I feel there is a safe distance between the car I just passed and me. I refuse to cut off someone I'm passing just so you can go murderously fast. When I see the passed person's headlights in my rearview, I'll get over. SO QUIT TAILGATING ME!
     
  14. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    Here's another way of asking my question:

    If a driver who is sane comes up behind you over a period of 45-60 seconds, giving you plenty of time to notice they are going faster than you are, is there anything peaceful they could do to encourage you to move over?
     
  15. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    There are always those people who just don't drive in the lane that's appropriate to their speed, so there's not much you can do except go around them. Definitely don't do anything to spark confrontation or road rage from them!
     
  16. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Some people don't care & will drive slowly on purpose when someone's hot on their tail to make the tailgater go around them. They figure why should they be made to move, although we all know THEY should really move, but they don't care.

    Now every once in a while, I'll be driving at the appropriate speed (whether in the fastest lane or not) & some smart ass driver will zoom up out of nowhere like a bat out of hell because either they didn't have the sense to wake up early enough to drive sensibly or they're just downright smart ass punks, etc & they'll drive closer than I'm comfortable w/. I don't let them intimidate me, I stay at my good speed & they soon drive around.
     
  17. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    Cars get mad at me in the highway safety corridor around here. Speed limit is 60, and they do enforce and fines are higher, plus more points. There are tons of trucks and I hate nothing more than to be stuck between two trucks, so I drive about 65 in the "fast lane" and people get so angry at me. I get honked at, flashed at, tailgated. I just ignore them. I am not driving over 65 and getting ticketed, nor am I driving my little Neon between two semi-trucks!

    Plus there is the fact that even if they did get around me, they would run into cars going 70 up ahead since if I could accelerate enough to safely pass all those trucks, I would. Also, this particular stretch of road has no exits and is only 5 miles long. I have no idea why people get so angry. After the 5 miles, lanes are added as exits dump onto it and there is plenty of passing room no matter who drives where at what speed.
     
  18. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    Probably not, because that driver is most likely clueless for any of a variety of reasons.
     
  19. brigidy

    brigidy Comrade

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    I don't know of any way, but I sure wish I did...this happens to me on a regular basis. I especially hate it when they are passing someone going the same speed as they are so both lanes are tied up forever (it seems).
     
  20. flyingmickey

    flyingmickey Rookie

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    We were just on holidays and had a ten hour drive to the cabin. We went through the Fraser River canyon which is mostly a single lane highway. For about one hour we drove behind a semi and a little red neon. The neon would drive like a snail when it was only single lane and then put on the speed for the passing lane. The semi eventually pulled over and I put the van (with boat) in overgear and pushed it past the neon on a long hill with a passing lane.

    The driver pushed it to try and stay ahead of me but I did get ahead of her. As soon as it became single lane she visibly put on her breaks and slowed way down. I think she felt comfortable only when it was double lane.

    Where I live it's not the fast and slow lane but the driving lane and the passing lane. If your not passing than you need to stay over.

    I will pass on the right when it's safe but I do get really frustrated when people want to prevent me from driving like I want to.
     
  21. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    If someone put their bright lights on me from behind, I probably wouldn't notice since my rear view mirror has a special dimmer, but if I did notice, that would not make me want to do that driver any favors.
     
  22. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    Why not? If it was a flicker, just to be noticed, and done by a really cheerful looking gal with no malice whatsoever? Just a simple, "Hey! There's someone here behind you, mind if I pass?"
     
  23. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    Brigidy, I know it seems like forever. The ol' cruise control pass at .1 mph faster than what they are passing.

    I really like the way you attribute this to the driver's comfort level with one or two lanes. I have been in this position, too, where the car I want to pass suddenly speeds up to prevent it. I assume they either were daydreaming and the movement of another car woke them, or their ego is bruised to be passed by a mama in a minivan. :haha:

    I'll bet this has something to do with it. It's like a silly game: Self-Deputized Speed Police vs. You're In My Headlights.

    I'll just keep doing what I always do... imagine it's my grandma driving that little lane boulder and wait til it's safe to pass. I wouldn't want to scare her, would I?
     
  24. sue35

    sue35 Habitué

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    Technically if the car in front is going the speed limit they do not have to move over at all. I would think that if you want to go above the speed limit then you can move over and go around them. I know it gets annoying and I have often gotten annoyed at slow drivers but I have to remember that I am the one that wants to speed.

    As for a polite way to ask I don't think there is one. I tend to think that they are unaware they are going as slow as they are.
     
  25. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    You made me wonder, so I looked it up. In Illinois, the law says drivers may not use the left lane except for passing. Exceptions to this include if there is no one directly behind you, and if traffic makes it impractical to move over.

    So actually, independent of the speed limit, it is not legal to block the left lane if you could move over.

    Not that this will change a person's mind if they've decided to be a Citizen Officer of Speed.
     
  26. sue35

    sue35 Habitué

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    I never knew that! Thanks:)
     
  27. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    They actually do in most states. I don't know how most people get through driver's ed without knowing this, but on a road that has 2 or more lanes, especially a freeway with no traffic lights, the left lane is NOT for driving. It is for passing. If you are driving in that lane and there are no other cars in the right lane for you to pass, you are BREAKING THE LAW. In PA, you WILL get a ticket for cruising in the left lane. If a person is driving in the left lane, it is their responsibility to get over when a car approaches from behind.

    I would flash my lights, and then pass on the right, which is also illegal in some states. You kind of just have to know where you are. If you approached a slow car in the left lane and passed to the right in PA, they would pull over the slow car for cruising in the left lane, but in VA, they would pull you over for aggressive driving. lol. Both are illegal in most states, it just depends on what is actually enforced.
     
  28. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    Thanks, Silverspoon...

    For reference, here's a chart of state-by-state laws about the use of the left lane.

    It says in PA, you can use the left lane if you are "when traveling at a speed greater than the traffic flow." Sounds good to me!
     
  29. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    cool, that's probably worth laminating and keeping in your car if you travel through different states a lot!
     
  30. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    If only everyone knew these laws!
     

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