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Old 07-28-2013, 07:47 AM
 
1,451 posts, read 2,269,347 times
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I wouldn't call it tailgating. To me, tailgating is when you ride someone's back bumper for a bit. I notice as I observe others changing lanes, they have a tendency to come right up to your back bumper before changing lanes and change lanes really slow while almost taking your back bumper out. I see it in my rear view and I watch it being done to other drivers quite a bit.

Is it laziness? Is it aggressive driving of some sort? Is it lack of depth perception? (There was a thread on the lack of depth perception part).

I come from South Florida and I consider drivers there to generally be far more aggressive but no one changes lanes like that there.
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Old 07-28-2013, 08:00 AM
 
Location: New-Dentist Colony
5,746 posts, read 9,457,412 times
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I would only come that close to your bumper if you're grandmothering along in the left lane--to show my irritation and hopefully motivate you to stay right when driving slow. If you're in the righthand lane, I would only come this close if you've just jumped in front of me after merging onto the highway and not gotten up to speed fast enough--a very common and annoying habit of some drivers. (If you're merging onto a road, either hang back till I pass or nail it so that you're well out in front of me--none of this pusillanimous, hesitant middle-ground BS.)
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Old 07-28-2013, 08:11 AM
 
1,451 posts, read 2,269,347 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carlingtonian View Post
I would only come that close to your bumper if you're grandmothering along in the left lane--to show my irritation and hopefully motivate you to stay right when driving slow. If you're in the righthand lane, I would only come this close if you've just jumped in front of me after merging onto the highway and not gotten up to speed fast enough--a very common and annoying habit of some drivers. (If you're merging onto a road, either hang back till I pass or nail it so that you're well out in front of me--none of this pusillanimous, hesitant middle-ground BS.)
I just keep it in the right lane and do somewhere around the speed limit. I see that weird last minute bumper turn thing all the time 95/395. I really do my best to try not to bother people and stay out of the way. I've got nothing against people going faster or slower than the speed limit as long as they can handle it and aren't clogging up the left lane or being jerks.
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Old 07-28-2013, 08:59 AM
 
Location: NoVA
832 posts, read 1,248,504 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by va_lucky View Post
I just keep it in the right lane and do somewhere around the speed limit. I see that weird last minute bumper turn thing all the time 95/395. I really do my best to try not to bother people and stay out of the way. I've got nothing against people going faster or slower than the speed limit as long as they can handle it and aren't clogging up the left lane or being jerks.
That might be the problem.

Doing the speed limit in the right lane during rush hour, is not going fast enough if there are two car spaces between you and the car in front of you.

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Old 07-28-2013, 09:03 AM
 
244 posts, read 510,441 times
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Don't be "that guy". Keep up with the flow of traffic, don't become an impediment by presenting yourself as an obstacle to your fellow drivers.
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Old 07-28-2013, 09:04 AM
 
Location: New-Dentist Colony
5,746 posts, read 9,457,412 times
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Originally Posted by mrskay662000 View Post
That might be the problem.

Doing the speed limit in the right lane during rush hour, is not going fast enough if there are two car spaces between you and the car in front of you.

I disagree; if they're in the right lane, they're entitled to go as slow as the minimum speed limit; the latter is rarely posted, but certainly, if they're going the maximum speed limit (which people here treat as the minimum), they're not being jerky by doing so in the righthand lane.
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Old 07-28-2013, 09:47 AM
 
244 posts, read 510,441 times
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You are entitled to stand on a street corner and shout obscenities. Taken to an extreme, the people from Westboro Baptist Church are entitled to do what they do. What you are entitled to and what you should do are different. Fact is, if you are not keeping up with traffic, you are endangering other drivers around you, and you definitely should not do that even though you are entitled to do so.
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Old 07-28-2013, 09:59 AM
 
Location: NoVA
832 posts, read 1,248,504 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carlingtonian View Post
I disagree; if they're in the right lane, they're entitled to go as slow as the minimum speed limit; the latter is rarely posted, but certainly, if they're going the maximum speed limit (which people here treat as the minimum), they're not being jerky by doing so in the righthand lane.
I think you misunderstood the tone of my post.

I didn't say they weren't entitled to do the speed limit.

I didn't say they were being jerky.

The reality is, not just in NOVA, but in any heavily traveled place in the world, people are aggressive drivers. Doing the speed limit in the right lane, while legal/legit/not jerky etc, is not fast enough for the majority of other drivers. In practice, we know this to be true. People generally drive at least 5 mph over the speed limit because they know they won't get ticketed, so that becomes the norm. Anyone going slower, is just clogging up the flow of traffic.

What is jerky/unreasonable/not entitled to do... (in my eyes) Is the speed limit in the left lane, OR one mph over the guy in the next right lane. If you're going to pass, do it and get back to the right. If you're just not comfortable unless you have multiple car spaces in front of you at high speeds, then you shouldn't be driving during rush hour in a metropolis.

And I'm with you on the mergers. Merging in this area is a joke. People seem to have it stuck in their head that if they have a blinker on, they're entitled to cut you off. I think I read somewhere that's the law in Virginia. You have to let someone in if they have a blinker on. I'm not convinced that's true, but if it is... that would explain so much of the congestion on the interstates. I let mergers in when they have a blinker on. I do not let people in who wait to the last 5 feet and don't use a blinker. I know that makes me an "aggressive" driver, but in rush hour... we're all aggressive.

But back to the OP.

I do this sometimes myself for three reasons.

1. You're going to slow in the middle/left lane and should move right. Always keep right, even when doing the speed limit. There's no point to leaving the right unless you're coming to a merge, you're passing or there's an impediment in the road. When I first got my license, I drove through Pennsylvania and laughed at their stupid road signs designed for people who barely passed their test. Now, years later, I understand why they do it. The simple rule of "keep right except to pass" seems to be a lost concept.

2. You've switched to my lane doing the same speed or slower, without good cause. Meaning, you've gotten into my lane (on your left side) for no reason other than you just wanted to leave the right lane. You had no cars in front of you to pass, there were no impediments and there were no mergers.

3. You got in my lane and there's a car to my left. I'm going faster than you, but there's a car on my left going faster than me. It's hard to time the lane switch in this case because I don't want to do what you've done to me, (cut me off to go slower) but I don't want to slow down (which in turn causes everyone behind us to slow down etc etc). So sometimes, getting on your bumper allows me to do that. The car on my left passes me as I come up on your bumper, and no one has to slow down because of one car.

I realize that my 3rd scenario could be seen as dangerous, but a reasonable driver in front of me won't freak out and slam on their brakes. Which, although it makes sense from a reactionary point of view in driving norms, is counter productive in this scenario. Why would you slam on your brakes for something behind your car? The only reason someone would do that would be to say "back off tailgater", which just sort of escalates road rage, or they're spending too much time looking behind them.

Rear view mirror drivers are a problem in an of itself.... They spend way too much time looking to see what the car behind them is doing, if they're going too fast or driving too close. They end up hitting their brakes for no good reason, causing accidents and slow downs.

I call them "brake tappers". No good reason, they just flash their brakes for fun I guess. Which causes back up brake tapping because the driver behind you doesn't know if you're actually slowing down or if you're just tapping your brakes to light them up for the sake of the car behind you. People who do that tend to get rear ended because the car behind them gets so used to seeing their brake lights on, they stop hitting their own in response. The car who cried stop I guess...

I can be a jerkish driver, but I do follow basic rules of the road (aside from tail gating) and wish everyone would do the same to keep the flow moving.

The bottom line for the OP is that, although I have my reasons for why I do that sometimes, I can't answer on behalf of the rest who do it.

Oh, I forgot... one other reason.

Because it's fun. If you like to drive, it's fun to be closer to other cars. I can't explain that one. It just... is.
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Old 07-28-2013, 11:23 AM
 
Location: Ormond Beach, FL
1,560 posts, read 1,623,577 times
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Commuting on 95/395 has its own laws of physics, if there is more than one car length gap, then a car will be sucked into the vacuum of the gap. Likewise, if you are changing lanes - the vacuum in the lane you are changing to, is sucking you in. By running up close to the car ahead, you are helping release the pull of the vacuum on the car ahead of you, thus avoiding having both you and the car ahead sucked into the lane with the gap. Don't try and work out the physics of 95/395, it is there and you just have to live with it.

Likewise having having a car sucked into a gap ahead of you is bad joojoo for your lane and most drivers know this and try to avoid the bad joojoo, no matter what. Trouble only comes when you get an old man with a hat from south side Virginia in rush hour traffic and spreads bad joojoo for miles. Don't try and figure out the joojoo of 95 either, the longer you drive it, the more you will understand.
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Old 07-28-2013, 11:59 AM
 
4,711 posts, read 11,385,132 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NovaOne View Post
Don't be "that guy". Keep up with the flow of traffic, don't become an impediment by presenting yourself as an obstacle to your fellow drivers.
Sorry, but I'm "that guy". I greatly enjoy my job....but I cannot get tickets and keep it. Two in a year means automatic dismissal.

So, if you think I'm going to risk my job so you can get to the next light a few seconds sooner, you're out of your ******* mind. Get as mad as you want. Hit me if you want. But that's the deal.
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