As you approach a highway merge point, there's no question you'll feel a bit anxious. This is particularly true if you look in your mirror and realize there are several large tractor-trailers moving toward you at a high rate of speed.
Proper merging is essential in remaining safe, so it's important to follow these three tips:
- Use the entire ramp to your advantage: Look at the ramp ahead to better gauge how much time you have to get up to speed. You'll typically have plenty of time, so use the ramp accordingly.
- Prepare to enter the highway: As you get up to speed, flip on your turn signal and begin your search for an open spot in traffic. The trucks and other vehicles already on the highway have the right of way, so don't feel pressured to pull out in front of them. When merging in close proximity to commercial trucks, take the size of the vehicle into consideration. This will change the way you search for an open space.
- Make your move: One of the biggest mistakes you can make is hesitating, as this puts you and others at risk. For example, if you hit your brakes at the end of the ramp, the car behind you may find it difficult to stop. Keep in mind that trucks require even more braking time than cars.
When it comes to merging, practice makes perfect. The more times you do this the more comfortable you'll feel in the future.
Once you establish yourself on the highway, take notice of the many vehicles surrounding you.
If you're part of a car-truck accident when merging or after you're established in traffic, it's important to seek information on how to protect your legal rights and obtain compensation for your injuries if the other driver was at fault.