The average driver will change lanes dozens of times during a short drive either on surface streets or the freeway and knowing how to properly change lanes will insure safety to everyone on the road.
We have all experienced a close call when another driver changing lanes cuts us off and nearly causes an accident or, a near miss on our part, when we change lanes and do not see the other car in our blind side.
Definition of unsafe lane change
It is a violation to change lanes without signaling or causing other traffic on the roadway to make evasive moves such as break or slow down, swerve out of your way or change lanes to avoid a collision.
It is also improper to change lances inside an intersection.
How to make a proper lane change
Before making a lane change the three most important things to know is that other traffic is warned that you are about to make a lane change, you give everyone enough time to prepare and that no one else is in your way.
Signaling warns all the traffic around you that you are about to make a lane change and gives them enough time to move into position to allow you to make a safe and smooth change.
To make a proper lane change, signal for approximately 100 feet before you make the change.
If you can see the car in the next lane behind you in your rear view mirror and you both are traveling at the same speed, then you have enough space to make the lane change.
Turn your head to look and see if any cars on the side of or in your blind spot. Do not rely solely on your outside mirrors.
Adjust your speed to match the speed of the other cars in the lane you are changing into to avoid causing any traffic having to slow down or ride your tail.
Once you have made your lane changes, do not forget to turn off your signal to avoid confusion to other cars.
Approximately 10% of all traffic accident on the roadway is a result of unsafe lane changing. To avoid accidents and becoming statistics follow these safety reminders.
Article also posted on Triond by Scott Hallock