A little Highway Ettiquette

Discussion in 'Tow Vehicles, Hitch & Towing' started by jim1999, Jun 17, 2009.

  1. jim1999

    jim1999 New Member

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    I would like to think that most people would like to be courteous when driving and that many people may not be aware of some of the unwritten rules on the highways that can make you an even more polite driver.

    When a large vehicle passes you and you would like to let them know they have safely cleared your vehicle you can turn your headlights on and off or off and on a couple of times. Unless it is full daylight out please do not flash your high beams (brights) as this can cause temporary blindness of the driver who just passed you.

    If you pass someone and they flash their lights to let you know it is safe to come back over into the main travel lane you can say thank you by flashing your 4 way flashers for a count of two. Semi trucks may also say thanks by turning off their trailer lights briefly. They have a switch in the truck that allows for this without turning off their headlights where cars don't, so flashing your hazard lights for a 2-3 count works just as well.

    If you are traveling in a group and pull into a rest area take up as few of the parking spaces as possible in the truck/trailer lot. The spaces in those lots are usually 80-100 feet long so often times 2 TV with small campers can fit into a single space. This leaves more parking for those vehicles who need a full space like large motor homes and trucks.

    If you see a vehicle stopped on the shoulder of the road, move over into the other lane if possible. If not possible slow down some. Pretty much all states have laws that say to do this for emergency vehicles (police, fire, etc) and some include road crew trucks and tow trucks in this as well. Regardless of what the law in any given state may say it is the polite thing to do not to mention it adds a huge degree of safety for both you and the vehicle and occupants of the vehicle on the side of the road.

    When it comes to sharing the road with large vehicles there is a simple rule to remember. If you can not see the driver in the mirror of the truck then the driver can not see you.
     
  2. bobhcs

    bobhcs Colorado Springs

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    Good tips Jim. Thanks for sharing!
     
  3. Wizfisher

    Wizfisher New Member

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    One thing that I see a lot that bothers me is people turning on their flashers when it is raining. [:(!]
    I'm pretty sure it is illegal here in Florida and your flashers should only be used when you are a disabled vehicle.
    Having your flashers on while driving could cause other drivers to think you are a stranded vehicle on the side of the road.

    Good post and thread.
     
  4. WV Hillbilly

    WV Hillbilly Terra Alta, West Virginia

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    Some mountain states allow flashers when pulling a hill and traveling 40mph or lower.
     
  5. Xolthrax

    Xolthrax Franconia, Pa.

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    Very good advice indeed.
     
  6. Daduv3Boys

    Daduv3Boys American by birth, Southern by the Grace of God!

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    Those are good tips, Jim. I'm glad someone spoke up and wrote these "unwritten" rules down for others to see. I just wish that everyone could see 'em not just pup owners.
     
  7. jwolfe01

    jwolfe01 Honeoye, NY

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    Ive always done those things when Im towing or on a long trip, like when I drive to FL. Im also one of the few left out there that flash their headlights to warn of speed traps. I remember when I was a kid, everyone did that, but I dont see many do it anymore.
     
  8. theseus

    theseus Centerville, OH

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    Excellent advice! Now if everyone would just follow it...
     
  9. PattieAM

    PattieAM New Member

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    Thanks for sharing the words of wisdom.

    About using the 4-way flashers when driving vs. on the side of the road....my truck driver friends told me years ago that they should be used when you are driving under the speedlimit. You frequently see semi's using their flashing lights when going uphill.
     
  10. bud121156

    bud121156 Western North Carolina

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    Good advice, Jim.
     
  11. Djsrcy

    Djsrcy Member

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    And if youre not passing someone get back into the right lane!!! When I'm..I mean when someone is on your butt and you dont know why, check to see what lane youre in. I cant stand slow drivers in the left lane!
    aahhhhhhhhhhhhhh I feel better. [:D]
     
  12. wishicouldgo2

    wishicouldgo2 SW Ohio

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    AMEN [SUN]
     
  13. scottie0719

    scottie0719 "the Rubber Duckie"

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    One more thing! If you're in the passing lane at night, PASS ME!! Don't hang there with your headlights in my side mirror. You might get them reflected back at you. If you can't or won't get up enough speed to pass, get back in the right lane.
     
  14. Wizfisher

    Wizfisher New Member

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    That's a different story than everyone driving the same 10mph under the speed limit because of the rain.
    I guess it's just one of those things that bother me. lol.
     
  15. jim1999

    jim1999 New Member

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    Technically this varies by state. Some states prohibit the constant use of 4 ways while driving, others require it if your vehicle is traveling in other than a "normal" manner such as below the posted min. speed limit, however it is illegal, to the best of my knowledge to use the 4 way flashers without some kind of "emergency".

    I have been in all 48 continental US states as a truck driver and I have never seen, nor been pulled over myself, for turning on my flashers when a situation warrant it. I would often use them if traveling slower than the posted min speed limit, or slower than the speed limit when visibility was really reduced, or if coming to or at a stop at a construction site.

    =========================================================================================
    A few other little unwritten rules:

    When you see someone attempting to enter the freeway, move over if possible unless prohibited by law.

    If you are entering the freeway and someone moves over for you allow them to move back over before fully accelerating and potentially passing them.

    As mentioned: If you go to pass someone then pass them as quickly as possible. Do not ride along side them for miles and miles. BTW: Many states now have "left lane laws" where it is actually illegal to simply drive in the far left lane which includes attempting to pass someone and taking "too long" at it. If for some reason you can not complete the pass in 1 mile you should slow and fall back into the travel lane.
     
  16. Wizfisher

    Wizfisher New Member

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    This one probably annoys the truck drivers and people towing so I will mention it.

    Vehicles towing and big trucks generally require more room to stop. Please do not cut them off to gain one spot while approaching a red light.
     
  17. jim1999

    jim1999 New Member

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    Wiz, not only can I tell you 1st hand that ticks off truckers but it also causes them to spend the next 5 minutes digging the seat out of their pants. [;)]
     
  18. aminyard

    aminyard New Member

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    Let's not forget "flash to pass"

    If you are in the left lane on a 2 lane road and someone comes up behind you with two flashes of their lights it's called "flash to pass." It is a courteous move and should be respected. The correct response is to move over to the right at your earliest opportunity. Incorrect responses include: hitting your brakes, waving fists, flipping the bird, slowing down, etc. These just show how little you paid attention in driver's ed . . .

    And - for the sake of everything holy - please recognize that you are, indeed, SLOWER TRAFFIC if you are going less than the speed limit. Please, please stay to the right when going up hills.

    Thank you. Safe travels.
     
  19. NatureGirl

    NatureGirl New Member

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    Someone did this to my DH years ago when he was a truck driver. A driver cut him off while approaching a green light, then slammed their brakes on right in front of him when the light turned yellow. To avoid hitting the idiot, DH made the decision to drive off the road instead of taking the risk of injuring the driver who cut him off. DH ended up with injuries and damage to the company truck while the jerk in the car just drove away.
     
  20. jtbeck

    jtbeck New Member

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    Let's not forget all the idiots who don't wait long ENOUGH to get back in the right lane after they've passed you. I've had fools cut back in front of me and I bet you couldn't put piece of paper edgeways between us.
     

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