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Blinker etiquette (1 Viewer)

Most driver's ed courses and DMV sites, from a quick search, say you should signal at least 100 feet and anywhere up to 5 seconds before making your change.

They also say:
1. Signal
2. Check your mirrors and blind spot
3. Make your lane change when clear

So @Bossman sorry to say but that person seems to be doing exactly what most DMV's in the country want you to do. They should signal, check, see you there, and wait until you're by them, then make their change.
I think for the most part I do #1 and #2 at the same time. I mean, one I am doing with my eyes and the other with my hand. They happen essentially at the same time. I don't really feel like they are separate acts.
 
Most driver's ed courses and DMV sites, from a quick search, say you should signal at least 100 feet and anywhere up to 5 seconds before making your change.

They also say:
1. Signal
2. Check your mirrors and blind spot
3. Make your lane change when clear

So @Bossman sorry to say but that person seems to be doing exactly what most DMV's in the country want you to do. They should signal, check, see you there, and wait until you're by them, then make their change.
I think for the most part I do #1 and #2 at the same time. I mean, one I am doing with my eyes and the other with my hand. They happen essentially at the same time. I don't really feel like they are separate acts.
Just curious ... you find yourself in the right hand lane stuck behind a car doing less than the speed limit.
You signal left / look at the same time as you stated, which is when you see a tractor trailer truck coming up fast in the lane that you're intending to move into.
Do you ;
A. Say a hail mary and go for it. Let's find out how good his brakes are
B. Wait for him to pass, leaving your directional blink, 20, 25, 30 times before he clears and you slide over
C. Shut your directional off and wait for a more opportune time to change lanes, pondering why you didn't just look in the first place
 
Just curious ... you find yourself in the right hand lane stuck behind a car doing less than the speed limit.
You signal left / look at the same time as you stated, which is when you see a tractor trailer truck coming up fast in the lane that you're intending to move into.
Do you ;
A. Say a hail mary and go for it. Let's find out how good his brakes are
B. Wait for him to pass, leaving your directional blink, 20, 25, 30 times before he clears and you slide over
C. Shut your directional off and wait for a more opportune time to change lanes, pondering why you didn't just look in the first place
So many variables that would lead to choosing A or B or C depending on those variables.

A. Depends on what car I am in and whether or not I believe I can merge without impacting the truck in that lane. Sometimes I can punch it and have very little impact and sometimes I won't be able to so I don't merge at that time.

B. If it's heavy traffic and I am just merging onto the highway and that is the reason I am stuck behind the car doing less than the speed limit I will likely leave the signal on because I will have to merge eventually and the heavy traffic will require my signal (unless I am in Los Angeles where a signal means speed up in the other lane to not allow me to merge).

C. If I see that it's only the truck and I have a clear space easily behind him then I will turn off the signal and wait for the truck to pass and then merge safely after that. No need to keep the signal on for that long and confuse the truck. Better to just let him continue on his pace and easily merge once he barrels on by at his high rate of speed.


ETA: Driving is not a one size fits all endeavor. There are many variables that impact how/what is the best course of action. This blinker etiquette discussion is kind of silly because there are many things that really impact the method/timing/etc of how/when to turn on your blinker. As a general statement, I disagree with the provided DMV recommendation of turning on your blinker before you even check to see if a merge opportunity exists. I think that can cause harm as I described in my answer above for situation C. By and large I use my blinker when changing position is imminent and I have a spot to merge. Having a blinker on for too long can numb the other vehicles into thinking it's on by accident and just left on with no intention of moving. That can be just as dangerous as not blinking at all.
 
Just curious ... you find yourself in the right hand lane stuck behind a car doing less than the speed limit.
You signal left / look at the same time as you stated, which is when you see a tractor trailer truck coming up fast in the lane that you're intending to move into.
Do you ;
A. Say a hail mary and go for it. Let's find out how good his brakes are
B. Wait for him to pass, leaving your directional blink, 20, 25, 30 times before he clears and you slide over
C. Shut your directional off and wait for a more opportune time to change lanes, pondering why you didn't just look in the first place
So many variables that would lead to choosing A or B or C depending on those variables.

A. Depends on what car I am in and whether or not I believe I can merge without impacting the truck in that lane. Sometimes I can punch it and have very little impact and sometimes I won't be able to so I don't merge at that time.

B. If it's heavy traffic and I am just merging onto the highway and that is the reason I am stuck behind the car doing less than the speed limit I will likely leave the signal on because I will have to merge eventually and the heavy traffic will require my signal (unless I am in Los Angeles where a signal means speed up in the other lane to not allow me to merge).

C. If I see that it's only the truck and I have a clear space easily behind him then I will turn off the signal and wait for the truck to pass and then merge safely after that. No need to keep the signal on for that long and confuse the truck. Better to just let him continue on his pace and easily merge once he barrels on by at his high rate of speed.
Not an on-ramp scenario. These variables that you are adding seems like an attempt to help your argument.
Let's make it crystal clear then;
A. Your actions will certainly cause the truck to have to brake HARD. Even if he doesn't hit you, he might get rear ended. Tires will skid, horns will be blown.
B. You just got on the highway, merged, and are now traveling for a bit in the right hand lane. The person in front of you that you merged behind is driving slow.
You signaled and looked at the same time to then see the truck bearing down in that outside lane that you want to be in.
C. Yes, the correct answer is C. Turn off your directional and wait until the truck passes.

So if the correct answer is "C", .... then why would you not look first, to see if a lane change is doable, before putting your directional on?
Wouldn't it make more sense to see the truck, wait for it to pass, THEN signal and make your lane change?
I don't care what drivers-ed teaches. Be aware and know your situation before you take any action (or "suggest" to other drivers that you are about to take action).
 
So if the correct answer is "C", .... then why would you not look first, to see if a lane change is doable, before putting your directional on?
Wouldn't it make more sense to see the truck, wait for it to pass, THEN signal and make your lane change?
I don't care what drivers-ed teaches. Be aware and know your situation before you take any action (or "suggest" to other drivers that you are about to take action).
I agree here for the most part. I am talking about milliseconds between looking and hand starting to move the blinker lever. More often than not in your one specific situation my hand likely didn't even start to move the lever and if it did it maybe got one blink in for the blink of an eye it took to put a bit of pressure on the lever and then notice I needed to wait for the truck that is barreling down the road to pass.

In reality for the merge situation you described I am already looking in my mirror/blind spot before I am even fully merged onto the highway figuring out a safe space to merge and won't have my blinker on yet because it's not even a consideration as the lane hasn't even gotten to the location where it is legal to merge.

I am in agreement with you that the DMV blinker first then look situation is not ideal and I would never do that as two separate actions. When I come to the decision that I need to merge my hand goes to the blinker lever as I am peeking for a space to merge. It's almost an unconscious action of hand to lever as I am looking. Sometimes the blinker will start as my brain is saying I am clear to go in the immediate future or sometimes my brain realizes a huge truck is barreling down the highway and I need to wait for him to pass to continue with the pressing of the blinker lever. Almost a subconscious action.
 
So if the correct answer is "C", .... then why would you not look first, to see if a lane change is doable, before putting your directional on?
Wouldn't it make more sense to see the truck, wait for it to pass, THEN signal and make your lane change?
I don't care what drivers-ed teaches. Be aware and know your situation before you take any action (or "suggest" to other drivers that you are about to take action).
I agree here for the most part. I am talking about milliseconds between looking and hand starting to move the blinker lever. More often than not in your one specific situation my hand likely didn't even start to move the lever and if it did it maybe got one blink in for the blink of an eye it took to put a bit of pressure on the lever and then notice I needed to wait for the truck that is barreling down the road to pass.

In reality for the merge situation you described I am already looking in my mirror/blind spot before I am even fully merged onto the highway figuring out a safe space to merge and won't have my blinker on yet because it's not even a consideration as the lane hasn't even gotten to the location where it is legal to merge.

I am in agreement with you that the DMV blinker first then look situation is not ideal and I would never do that as two separate actions. When I come to the decision that I need to merge my hand goes to the blinker lever as I am peeking for a space to merge. It's almost an unconscious action of hand to lever as I am looking. Sometimes the blinker will start as my brain is saying I am clear to go in the immediate future or sometimes my brain realizes a huge truck is barreling down the highway and I need to wait for him to pass to continue with the pressing of the blinker lever. Almost a subconscious action.
Same. I'm hand on lever, ready to signal as soon as I get the notion.
But I always look to see if it's feasible before pulling the lever. It's usually a "bang, bang" play.
 
Just curious ... you find yourself in the right hand lane stuck behind a car doing less than the speed limit.
You signal left / look at the same time as you stated, which is when you see a tractor trailer truck coming up fast in the lane that you're intending to move into.
Do you ;
A. Say a hail mary and go for it. Let's find out how good his brakes are
B. Wait for him to pass, leaving your directional blink, 20, 25, 30 times before he clears and you slide over
C. Shut your directional off and wait for a more opportune time to change lanes, pondering why you didn't just look in the first place
So many variables that would lead to choosing A or B or C depending on those variables.

A. Depends on what car I am in and whether or not I believe I can merge without impacting the truck in that lane. Sometimes I can punch it and have very little impact and sometimes I won't be able to so I don't merge at that time.

B. If it's heavy traffic and I am just merging onto the highway and that is the reason I am stuck behind the car doing less than the speed limit I will likely leave the signal on because I will have to merge eventually and the heavy traffic will require my signal (unless I am in Los Angeles where a signal means speed up in the other lane to not allow me to merge).

C. If I see that it's only the truck and I have a clear space easily behind him then I will turn off the signal and wait for the truck to pass and then merge safely after that. No need to keep the signal on for that long and confuse the truck. Better to just let him continue on his pace and easily merge once he barrels on by at his high rate of speed.
Not an on-ramp scenario. These variables that you are adding seems like an attempt to help your argument.
Let's make it crystal clear then;
A. Your actions will certainly cause the truck to have to brake HARD. Even if he doesn't hit you, he might get rear ended. Tires will skid, horns will be blown.
B. You just got on the highway, merged, and are now traveling for a bit in the right hand lane. The person in front of you that you merged behind is driving slow.
You signaled and looked at the same time to then see the truck bearing down in that outside lane that you want to be in.
C. Yes, the correct answer is C. Turn off your directional and wait until the truck passes.

So if the correct answer is "C", .... then why would you not look first, to see if a lane change is doable, before putting your directional on?
Wouldn't it make more sense to see the truck, wait for it to pass, THEN signal and make your lane change?
I don't care what drivers-ed teaches. Be aware and know your situation before you take any action (or "suggest" to other drivers that you are about to take action).
Also, something everyone should consider,
when you signal before looking, it causes other drivers to now be prepared for you to change lanes.
In the scenario above, the truck driver must prepare himself to react if in fact you do pull into his lane.
He knows that there is a 90% chance that you're one of those "drivers-ed, by the book", signal before you look driver.... I'm sure there's a few of you out there.
... but there is maybe a 10% chance that the pre-blinking offender is actually coming over.
The truck driver might feel the need to prepare himself for said 10% chance by letting off on the throttle and grabbing the wheel with a second hand should he have to make an emergency maneuver.
Why would anyone want to create this undo stress by signaling without looking? ...when they could simply wait for a proper gap, signal 2 blinks, and move over.
 
Bossman, in your scenario where I'm behind a slow moving vehicle and want to move over into the next lane with oncoming traffic, I signal, look, then keep signal on until a spot opens. If a truck is barreling down in the other lane I'll let it pass and keep the blinker on as a way of letting other drivers know my intentions in hopes they are all not jackalopes unwilling to let someone in front of them. Usually another driver will let me slide in safely although some folks take umbrage at letting someone else get ahead of them on the highway as if it's a personal affront. We call those folks jackholes.
 
Bossman, in your scenario where I'm behind a slow moving vehicle and want to move over into the next lane with oncoming traffic, I signal, look, then keep signal on until a spot opens. If a truck is barreling down in the other lane I'll let it pass and keep the blinker on as a way of letting other drivers know my intentions in hopes they are all not jackalopes unwilling to let someone in front of them. Usually another driver will let me slide in safely although some folks take umbrage at letting someone else get ahead of them on the highway as if it's a personal affront. We call those folks jackholes.
Understood and this does make sense in heavy traffic. But when traffic is not so heavy, why would you not look first?
Myself, I prefer to not ask for permission and just wait until I feel it's safe to make the lane change, blink twice and go.
... and here in MA, it is well known that using your directional is giving information to the enemy.
 
Had another driver do this to me today...
I'm in the left hand lane passing at a hearty rate of speed
Driver in the right hand lane a just a bit ahead of me throws on a directional, signaling his "intention" to enter my lane.
I have 2 choices ... proceed past the flashing lane changer and cross fingers he doesn't actually come over... paint will be traded at best, possibly lives lost at worst.
or mash the brake pedal and shave off the 15mph difference between his vehicle and my own to facilitate him coming in (which isn't so easy to do in a full size truck, lifted, with 35" tires).
I get past the guy and I look behind me, no cars for quite a ways. So why would this person not wait until I'm clear to signal and move over?
I'm starting to think some people put on their blinker before they even look to see if there is an opening. Put on your directional and THEN look. This is so foreign to me.
Some people actually think think this is how to use your signal?
Now imagine if the guy just hit his signal and came over. Forcing you to mash the brake pedal and shave off the 15mph difference between his vehicle and your own to keep from trading paint or losing lives.

Fact of the matter is, you are a bad driver. No other way to put it. There's a reason the law says to leave your signal on for a few seconds before you come over. It's a SIGNAL to other drivers of your intent. Hitting the signal as you're coming over does absolutely nothing. You might as well just cut people off with no signal because it's the same result.
 
In my opinion, you should always be "looking" anyway, as in having a general awareness of what's going on around you by continuously glancing in your mirrors whether or not you intend to change lanes. So I think I usually look (in mirrors) before signaling and then look (in mirrors and over shoulder) again after signaling and before changing lanes.

But another thing to consider is that the signal isn't only for the drivers in the lane you are moving into. Is there someone in front of the driver in front of me? Then the driver in front of me might also be considering a lane change once an oncoming truck on their left passes. Is there someone behind me doing the same? How many times have you been in the situation where you wait for the opening you see coming and then the guy behind you moves in to that spot without making you aware of his intentions beforehand? That's another dangerous situation that could at least be less dangerous with the warning that comes with the proper use of a blinker by both parties.
 
Had another driver do this to me today...
I'm in the left hand lane passing at a hearty rate of speed
Driver in the right hand lane a just a bit ahead of me throws on a directional, signaling his "intention" to enter my lane.
I have 2 choices ... proceed past the flashing lane changer and cross fingers he doesn't actually come over... paint will be traded at best, possibly lives lost at worst.
or mash the brake pedal and shave off the 15mph difference between his vehicle and my own to facilitate him coming in (which isn't so easy to do in a full size truck, lifted, with 35" tires).
I get past the guy and I look behind me, no cars for quite a ways. So why would this person not wait until I'm clear to signal and move over?
I'm starting to think some people put on their blinker before they even look to see if there is an opening. Put on your directional and THEN look. This is so foreign to me.
Some people actually think think this is how to use your signal?
Now imagine if the guy just hit his signal and came over. Forcing you to mash the brake pedal and shave off the 15mph difference between his vehicle and your own to keep from trading paint or losing lives.

Fact of the matter is, you are a bad driver. No other way to put it. There's a reason the law says to leave your signal on for a few seconds before you come over. It's a SIGNAL to other drivers of your intent. Hitting the signal as you're coming over does absolutely nothing. You might as well just cut people off with no signal because it's the same result.
mostly agree, though i wouldn't conclude that bossman is a bad driver. if he comes over going 15 mph less than that lane to his left, forcing a hard break, not bringing his vehicle up to speed quickly enough for the car to the left to hold their speed, sure. i am not positive that bossman is doing that.

if he cannot bring his car up fast enough, and there is nothing behind that car to left.... he should wait for it to pass then get over imo.
 
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