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Author Topic: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people  (Read 7390 times)

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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #25 on: January 18, 2021, 04:37:52 PM »

In my experience, the reason it ends up being a "disruption to dozens of other drivers" is because the other drivers refuse to just let the guy in.  If they did, he could merge at the same speed of traffic as the other lane, and only a couple of drivers would have to slow down any more than they were already going.  It's when nobody lets him in that he ends up merging from 0 mph and the domino effect happens.
Unless, of course, traffic is already going 0 mph or barely moving.

In which case, drivers should definitely take turns letting each other go.

And block the traffic that isn't exiting?

Yeah, I don't agree that traffic should be let into a queue if they are blocking lanes used by a different movement such as the thru movement. Those people should consider themselves as having missed their exit, and proceed straight and turn around.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #26 on: January 18, 2021, 04:41:24 PM »

We may have slightly different scenarios in mind, but...  If we assume a single exit-only lane and the rest of the lanes are through-only, then... yeah, maybe the rightmost through lane would be better served that way.  Depends on the situation

I'll give you a similar example that I use every day going home from work.  The details are a little different, but bear with me...

This is southbound I-135 at the Kellogg interchange.

Black lines = I-135 SB through lanes
Blue line = Accel/Decel lane from 1st-2nd Streets to Kellogg WB
Red line = 'Normal' path to go from I-135 SB to Kellogg EB (my route home from work)



At rush hour, the ramp to Kellogg WB is often backed up, enough that the tailback frequently bleeds into the rightmost through lane of I-135 SB.  It also makes merging onto I-135 SB from 1st-2nd Streets rather... ummm... exciting.  The I-135 SB to Kellogg WB is a very heavy movement here during the afternoon rush, much heavier than than to Kellogg EB and probably fairly close to I-135 through-traffic.

It's quite common for drivers going my way (to Kellogg EB) to use the red line below instead.



They use the middle through lane until the last possible second—bypassing all the drivers stuck waiting to merge west—and then jump across the rightmost through lane into a nearly empty ramp.  Occasionally, they have to slow down to around 35 or 40 mph to do it, but I assert that it's no more dangerous to do that than add their car to the congestion mess, where further slow-down could result in a rear-end collision on I-135.  Some other drivers even do that 'modified' red line path and then merge into the blue line path once on the two-lane part of the exit ramp.  Sometimes that means I have to slow down quite a bit, because they have to slow down quite a bit in order to merge west, but I'd rather have to do that than have the lane change happen on the interstate mainline.

OK, so that's all really confusing.  My main point is that maybe the through lanes are better used to store exiting traffic if exiting traffic is substantially congested.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #27 on: January 18, 2021, 04:56:06 PM »

Be careful not to run out of horn juice.

Call it by the correct name:  horn fluid.  It runs out especially fast during cold weather, so Crash_It might be due for a visit to the mechanic soon.

Many modern vehicles have synthetic honking fluid, which is designed for the demands and rigors of today's first-world problems.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #28 on: January 18, 2021, 05:18:40 PM »

We may have slightly different scenarios in mind, but...  If we assume a single exit-only lane and the rest of the lanes are through-only, then... yeah, maybe the rightmost through lane would be better served that way.  Depends on the situation

I'll give you a similar example that I use every day going home from work.  The details are a little different, but bear with me...

...

OK, so that's all really confusing.  My main point is that maybe the through lanes are better used to store exiting traffic if exiting traffic is substantially congested.

Actually, it wasn't that confusing to me because I remember you mentioning this interchange previously in a similar context. It's actually almost identical to the situation where my immature, 18-year-old self honked at someone for 14 seconds (which, for reference, is right here). Both are confusing situations that probably makes non-local drivers nervous even in light traffic, not to mention at rush hour.

As for the congestion, in my example and probably yours as well, it's a no-win situation. The ramp needs to be widened, but you can't dump two entrance lanes onto the 590 mainline, which is tricky enough as-is. I know there's a happy medium between people cutting in at the last second and everyone going single file for two miles, but I haven't found it yet, so I'm really open to suggestions for how this should or could be handled.


It also makes merging onto I-135 SB from 1st-2nd Streets rather... ummm... exciting.

Same with my example for the traffic getting on at Penfield Road. The merging usually happens immediately where the entrance ramp joins the highway, and with so much traffic switching lanes, you've got a tricky, backup-prone weave -- which is, of course, possible to bypass altogether by keeping left until you're past the mess and then cramming your way in at the last second. That's what I can't stand.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #29 on: January 18, 2021, 05:48:36 PM »

The merging usually happens immediately where the entrance ramp joins the highway, and with so much traffic switching lanes, you've got a tricky, backup-prone weave -- which is, of course, possible to bypass altogether by keeping left until you're past the mess and then cramming your way in at the last second. That's what I can't stand.

I get it that a lot of people can't stand such behavior, but I remain unconvinced that it's either (a) a poor decision, considering the situation, or (b) all that bad for overall traffic flow.

Some people merge early, others merge late, and it's our job as drivers to expect and accommodate both as a normal part of highway driving.



For what it's worth, I have no guilty conscience when one lane of the Interstate is closed up ahead, a bazillion drivers all merge over a mile and a half in advance of the closure, and I get in front of them because I waited till farther down the line to merge over.  Their jumping the gun and wasting their own time is no reason for me to do so and waste mine.  But that's a topic for another thread and, indeed, has already been on here.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #30 on: January 18, 2021, 08:28:30 PM »

... you've got a tricky, backup-prone weave -- which is, of course, possible to bypass altogether by keeping left until you're past the mess and then cramming your way in at the last second. That's what I can't stand.
I get it that a lot of people can't stand such behavior, but I remain unconvinced that it's either (a) a poor decision, considering the situation, or (b) all that bad for overall traffic flow.

Well, of course it's not a bad decision for you... it saves a couple minutes on a good day and even more on a bad day. But it's not just bad for traffic flow... it's what causes the backups in the first place.


For what it's worth, I have no guilty conscience when one lane of the Interstate is closed up ahead, a bazillion drivers all merge over a mile and a half in advance of the closure, and I get in front of them because I waited till farther down the line to merge over.  Their jumping the gun and wasting their own time is no reason for me to do so and waste mine.  But that's a topic for another thread and, indeed, has already been on here.

Absolutely. I have no issues with that. I'm a big advocate of the zipper merge, especially in construction zones. The situation we've been talking about, though, is different because it involves streams of traffic on which the congestion has, at least theoretically, no bearing. Other drivers aren't necessarily just stuck in it anyways.
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kphoger

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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #31 on: January 18, 2021, 09:05:50 PM »



... you've got a tricky, backup-prone weave -- which is, of course, possible to bypass altogether by keeping left until you're past the mess and then cramming your way in at the last second. That's what I can't stand.

I get it that a lot of people can't stand such behavior, but I remain unconvinced that it's either (a) a poor decision, considering the situation, or (b) all that bad for overall traffic flow.

Well, of course it's not a bad decision for you... it saves a couple minutes on a good day and even more on a bad day. But it's not just bad for traffic flow... it's what causes the backups in the first place.

In some places, I suppose.  In others, no.  At the Wichita example, the backup is caused by heavy traffic on the Kellogg mainline, plus all traffic from I-135 having to merge in at one point after just having merged into itself (SB and NB exiting traffic forming one lane).  That is, the backup is due to something farther downstream than what we're talking about.  By doing the "bad" thing, a "rogue" driver is actually shifting the potential conflict from the I-135 mainline onto the ramp.  That, in my opinion, is actually preferable.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #32 on: January 18, 2021, 09:47:38 PM »

At the Wichita example, the backup is caused by heavy traffic on the Kellogg mainline, plus all traffic from I-135 having to merge in at one point after just having merged into itself (SB and NB exiting traffic forming one lane).  That is, the backup is due to something farther downstream than what we're talking about.  By doing the "bad" thing, a "rogue" driver is actually shifting the potential conflict from the I-135 mainline onto the ramp.  That, in my opinion, is actually preferable.

That's an interesting distinction. My example doesn't have two ramps merging into one, but it does have more curvature and less generous sightlines. Drivers braking (usually unnecessarily) while trying to force their way in to the 590 mainline as they go around a curve also contributes to the backups.

The signage and lane markings, though, do seem to encourage merging before the first split. Unlike the Wichita example, each exit has its own sign (as seen in my first GSV link upthread), and there's a solid white line between the two lanes all the way from the original gore to where the ramps split. This is likely partly due to curvature and partly due to the length between the two splits: Your example is about 800 feet while the NY one is closer to 600 feet. I'd say your argument starts to make more sense once the distance between the two points exceeds 1000 feet, as in this San Antonio example, while it becomes borderline dangerous to have any merging at all going on in cases where said zone is less than 500 feet, such as the opposite side of my example (I-490 EB to NY/I-590), which only has about 350 feet. I'd argue it's dangerous to be switching lanes at any point in those 350 feet, congestion or no congestion.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #33 on: January 19, 2021, 10:46:55 AM »

I just got a new dashcam!  I almost certainly won't be using it to create this kind of post.  Maybe I can use it to show people cool road configurations or bridges or landscapes or designs, and not complaints about other drivers.  I've been thinking about maybe providing a walkthrough of how DDI's work?  Anyway, there has to be better applications for dashcam usage.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #34 on: January 19, 2021, 11:46:38 AM »

I just got a new dashcam!  I almost certainly won't be using it to create this kind of post.  Maybe I can use it to show people cool road configurations or bridges or landscapes or designs, and not complaints about other drivers.  I've been thinking about maybe providing a walkthrough of how DDI's work?  Anyway, there has to be better applications for dashcam usage.

We all hope so.  Roadgeeking is a hobby, not an outlet for our frustrations.

I try to separate the frustrations of my commute from the joys of road travel for travel sake.
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Crash_It

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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #35 on: January 19, 2021, 12:12:24 PM »

Another U-Toob video to monetize ...   :thumbdown:
I doubt that these videos are even monetized, though Crash_It would need to confirm this. I have never received any form of ad before a video on his channel. Even if it is monetized, It probably doesn't draw that much money in, given the channel's statistics. Scrolling through the channel's videos, the highest viewcount was ~3k, though the average is much lower than that.


Not monetized yet. I'm 20 something subscribers short of that. The amount of views I get are far more than that. Prior to the changes I got 3 paychecks when I used to be monetized. I'm not putting these videos on here to solicit for subscribers. You like my content? You make the decision on your own as to whether or not to subscribe.
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kphoger

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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #36 on: January 19, 2021, 12:15:50 PM »



Another U-Toob video to monetize ...   :thumbdown:

I doubt that these videos are even monetized, though Crash_It would need to confirm this. I have never received any form of ad before a video on his channel. Even if it is monetized, It probably doesn't draw that much money in, given the channel's statistics. Scrolling through the channel's videos, the highest viewcount was ~3k, though the average is much lower than that.

Not monetized yet. I'm 20 something subscribers short of that. The amount of views I get are far more than that. Prior to the changes I got 3 paychecks when I used to be monetized. I'm not putting these videos on here to solicit for subscribers. You like my content? You make the decision on your own as to whether or not to subscribe.

Well, one actually constructive piece of criticism:  Be sure you actually know the law before claiming people are breaking it.

This makes at least twice now that you've betrayed a misunderstanding of the Illinois Vehicle Code.  Take it to heart that a guy 700 miles away, who hasn't lived in Illinois in thirteen years, knows the Illinois Vehicle Code better than you apparently do.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #37 on: January 19, 2021, 12:16:14 PM »

I just got a new dashcam!  I almost certainly won't be using it to create this kind of post.  Maybe I can use it to show people cool road configurations or bridges or landscapes or designs, and not complaints about other drivers.  I've been thinking about maybe providing a walkthrough of how DDI's work?  Anyway, there has to be better applications for dashcam usage.

I use mine for that too... See this video


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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #38 on: January 19, 2021, 12:19:40 PM »



Another U-Toob video to monetize ...   :thumbdown:

I doubt that these videos are even monetized, though Crash_It would need to confirm this. I have never received any form of ad before a video on his channel. Even if it is monetized, It probably doesn't draw that much money in, given the channel's statistics. Scrolling through the channel's videos, the highest viewcount was ~3k, though the average is much lower than that.

Not monetized yet. I'm 20 something subscribers short of that. The amount of views I get are far more than that. Prior to the changes I got 3 paychecks when I used to be monetized. I'm not putting these videos on here to solicit for subscribers. You like my content? You make the decision on your own as to whether or not to subscribe.

Well, one actually constructive piece of criticism:  Be sure you actually know the law before claiming people are breaking it.

This makes at least twice now that you've betrayed a misunderstanding of the Illinois Vehicle Code.  Take it to heart that a guy 700 miles away, who hasn't lived in Illinois in thirteen years, knows the Illinois Vehicle Code better than you apparently do.

There were drivers being slow and not in the correct lane for doing so

Driving Under the minimum speed
Changing lanes over gore lines and without making sure it was clear to do so
Changing lanes without indicating

All of these are violations of the Illinois vehicle code.
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kphoger

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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #39 on: January 19, 2021, 12:23:42 PM »

I was referring to this:


"Speeds up when I go to pass (unlawful)" cite statute please

He's probably misinterpreting 625 ILCS 5/11-703(b) and thinking it applies to Interstate highways.

It doesn't, because the first clause excludes them by virtue of 625 ILCS 5/11-704(a)2.

Speeding up while being passed is only illegal on two-lane highways.  Not expressways.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #40 on: January 19, 2021, 12:44:05 PM »

There were drivers being slow and not in the correct lane for doing so

...

All of these are violations of the Illinois vehicle code.

Also, I'm unaware of any "correct lane for" "drivers being slow" according to the Illinois Vehicle Code.  Please either (a) cite your reference and be prepared for the rest of us to evaluate your claim, or else (b) stop saying that's a thing.

The closest I know of is the requirement to stay out of the left lane of a fully controlled-access highway unless there's no other vehicle directly behind the driver or if congestion etc. make it reasonable to be there [625 ILCS 5/11-701(d)–(e)].  Nothing about any lane to the right of the leftmost one.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #41 on: January 19, 2021, 12:54:20 PM »

I had an incident last night that would have been Crash-It worthy.

It's a 5-lane road (2 lanes each way, plus a center left turn lane).  I'm coming up toward my turn, and preparing to move to the center lane.  More than a block from the intersection, another car goes into the left turn lane and begins passing me.  It was well before the yellow turn lane markings turn to a solid white.  In fact, I think it was before the previous side street.  Fortunately I saw the car before it was too late.

My reactions were quite different than what would be in a Crash-It video though.  I didn't lay on the horn for multi-seconds.  (I did semi-yell, "What are you doing?")  Instead I simply took evasive action - put on the brakes, didn't move left, and let the other car go first.  Done.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #42 on: January 19, 2021, 01:55:27 PM »

I remember a few years ago I was driving on I-75 northbound and everyone on the highway was doing about 77 to 80 miles an hour. All of the sudden we dropped to about 40 miles an hour for no reason at all other than some car in the middle Lane didn't know how to drive at highway speeds. I was screaming get fucking moving dumbass this is I-75 not your driveway.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #43 on: January 19, 2021, 02:35:19 PM »

I had an incident last night that would have been Crash-It worthy.

It's a 5-lane road (2 lanes each way, plus a center left turn lane).  I'm coming up toward my turn, and preparing to move to the center lane.  More than a block from the intersection, another car goes into the left turn lane and begins passing me.  It was well before the yellow turn lane markings turn to a solid white.  In fact, I think it was before the previous side street.  Fortunately I saw the car before it was too late.

My reactions were quite different than what would be in a Crash-It video though.  I didn't lay on the horn for multi-seconds.  (I did semi-yell, "What are you doing?")  Instead I simply took evasive action - put on the brakes, didn't move left, and let the other car go first.  Done.

My wife learned to drive in Branson, where the Strip is a non-stop two-lane road with center TWLTL.  Traffic gets so backed up there sometimes, that it's pretty common to drive more than a quarter-mile in the center lane, passing dozens of stopped vehicles, on the way to a left turn.  So, in driver's ed, she was taught to ALWAYS check your mirror before moving into the TWLTL, because there's a good chance someone is coming up from behind you in it.  That had never really occurred to me before meeting her, but it's now become SOP for me as well.
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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #44 on: January 19, 2021, 10:37:32 PM »

I just got a new dashcam!  I almost certainly won't be using it to create this kind of post.  Maybe I can use it to show people cool road configurations or bridges or landscapes or designs, and not complaints about other drivers.  I've been thinking about maybe providing a walkthrough of how DDI's work?  Anyway, there has to be better applications for dashcam usage.

Looking forward to it!  We need more cool roads and bridges, and less road rage.

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Re: Never Knew Interstate Driving Was this hard to some people
« Reply #45 on: January 19, 2021, 11:27:24 PM »

The merging usually happens immediately where the entrance ramp joins the highway, and with so much traffic switching lanes, you've got a tricky, backup-prone weave -- which is, of course, possible to bypass altogether by keeping left until you're past the mess and then cramming your way in at the last second. That's what I can't stand.

I get it that a lot of people can't stand such behavior, but I remain unconvinced that it's either (a) a poor decision, considering the situation, or (b) all that bad for overall traffic flow.

Some people merge early, others merge late, and it's our job as drivers to expect and accommodate both as a normal part of highway driving.

I just wanted to pop into say that I completely agree with your position here. I think a lot of people falsely assume that traffic only generates because of poor lane changing decisions, or rubber-band breaking, etc. While this kind of incidental congestion does occur, I think most traffic is actually caused by overall congestion: too many people trying to use one lane or road.

For an example very similar to your drawing above, I take you to Southbound I-5 in Lakewood, WA. Traffic frequently backs up southbound along I-5 approaching WA-512 as, although it is a two-lane exit ramp, the exit-only portion of that two-lane exit only begins about a half mile upstream from the exit. What traditionally happens is a big dance of traffic going south: the #4 lane is full of cars that fully understand that the exit is coming up soon, and are waiting in what they correctly assume is the lane to use to exit. Traffic in every other lane (#1 to #3) also knows the #4 lane is ultimately necessary to access either exit lane, but does not use the #4 lane until very shortly before the exit. Nearer the split, most traffic in the #4 lane changes into the #5 lane; the other cars in lanes #1 to #3 change over quickly at the last moment, and exit using the #4 lane.

The problem? People using the #4 lane for the entire time. If everyone having to exit had to use the #4 lane, the backup would be enormous, and certainly more dangerous. Having traffic trying to exit from every lane gradually reduces the speed of each lane, but the overall backup is much shorter as a result, and safer as you don't have one lane barely moving adjacent to a lane that is moving at racecar speeds.
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