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Old 09-02-2005, 09:50 AM   #1
SteveDallas
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A small commuting rant

I'd just like to point out a few small details to all of the complete fucking idiots who drive in Philadelphia.
  • Turning Lanes. The idea of the turning lane, be it left or right, is that you move out of the way so that traffic that's not turning can continue on. Sitting half in and half out blocking traffic is no fucking good.
  • Speed. Guess what people, you're not on the fucking interstate. I've never been one to religiously adhere to the speed limit, but you just need to recognize that on most roads traffic will not permit you to go more than 20 or 25 MPH over the speed limit
  • Lane changing. (related somewhat to speed) Let's say you want to do 60. (This is perfectly reasonable, because the speed limit is 25.) And let's say most people in the right lane are doing 40 and most in the left lane are doing about 50. Weaving back and forth between the two lanes will not get you where you're going faster.
  • Merging into traffic. Believe it or not, merging from one lane into another isn't a pissing contest and you won't be emasculated if you merge by going behind another car. I know this may come as a shock, but waiting until the last possible minute, hitting the gas, passing four cars in the other lane, and whipping over from the shoulder after your lane has pretty much disappeared, with approximately 0.347 inches to spare between you and the next car, may feel good, but it's not safe, and I'd wish for you to die a horrible flaming death in doing so if it weren't for the fact that you'd take another car full of innocent people with you.
  • Stop signs. A stop sign is a fucking stop sign. You STOP and you don't continue until traffic is clear. I don't know why people at certain intersections think it's OK to just keep on going and make a left turn no matter what's coming.
  • Turns into traffic in the middle of a block. If it's rush hour and you're trying to turn left onto a 5 lane highway out of a gas station, Wawa, etc. with no traffic light to help you, there's two things you need to know. First, it's probably a stupid idea. Second, if somebody in the lane closest to you is nice (but dumb) enough to stop and let you out, that doesn't mean the people in the other four fucking lanes know you're coming and are stopping for you.

Sorry.

Just had to get that off my chest.

You can move along now.
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Old 09-02-2005, 10:13 AM   #2
Griff
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Still picking glass out of your hair?
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Old 09-02-2005, 10:19 AM   #3
perth
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Seconded for Colorado Springs.

Actually, my commute was very nice for once. I hit every single light green, which turned a 30 minute commute into a sub-20 minute drive. I knew I spent a lot of time waiting on lights, but I had no idea it was fully one third of my commute every day.
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Old 09-02-2005, 11:40 AM   #4
wolf
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As I was having my traumatic experience on the New Jersey Turnpike the other day, I had a thought. Or two. But this is the for this thread.

Other than stupid lane changing, merging onto the highway at an entrance ramp is the most dangerous part of highway driving. I do commend the New Jersey Turnpike for having accelleration lanes, which don't actually exist in Pennsylvania. I also dug the trucks/busses vs. cars split lane thing. Very pleasant.

Anyway ...

Why doesn't anyone design a limited access highway in which the entrance ramp actually creates a new lane ... taking, say, a two lane road into a three lane, and not forcing the cars newly entering to jump into the full speed traffic lanes right away ... they have several miles to do that. At exits, this outer lane would be exit only, and would not continue past the ramp, so you'd have a two-lane ... but the corresponding entering lane would take it back to three (Kind of like the Broomall Entrance to the Blue Route, if you're here near Philadelphia).

This would require a different kind of politeness in driving (if you like going slow and hugging the right lane you'd have to change lanes a lot more often), but it works in the picture in my head.
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Old 09-02-2005, 11:49 AM   #5
Hobbs
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Since the area I live in is fairly new, every intersection has a four-way stop sign. People operate a car, program a VCR, but they can't get the concept of a four-way stop. Drives me nuts.
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Old 09-02-2005, 11:52 AM   #6
dar512
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If I understand your description, Wolf, lots of places do that. It's unusual around here to find an entrance ramp that doesn't have a merge lane for 1/2 mile or so.

Of course you'll still see on occasional timid driver who drives to the end of the merge lane and sits there waiting for an opening.
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Old 09-02-2005, 12:09 PM   #7
Cyclefrance
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To SD: May I suggest that you do your utmost to avoid having to use any gas station that you have to access by turning off an interstate after a couple of miles, then going across a through junction and then across a set of lights where there is a turning lane. It just won't be your day - guaranteed!
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Old 09-02-2005, 12:26 PM   #8
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Bah... merge lanes are for wusses. The Pasadena Freeway -- the prototypical freeway, BTW -- has stop signs at the end of many 'onramps'. You must be prepared for takeoff to get on that number 2 lane... hmmm... I wonder why they call it number 2?

Fortunately, that particular prototype has been largely scrapped.
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Old 09-02-2005, 12:27 PM   #9
BigV
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'Round here, wolf, those constructs are called "collector - distributor lanes" and they're a regular fixture in the morning traffic reports. Yet another good idea vulnerable to the power of human stupidity as demonstrated by SD's examples above.
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Old 09-02-2005, 12:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barefoot serpent
Bah... merge lanes are for wusses. The Pasadena Freeway -- the prototypical freeway, BTW -- has stop signs at the end of many 'onramps'. You must be prepared for takeoff to get on that number 2 lane... hmmm... I wonder why they call it number 2?

Fortunately, that particular prototype has been largely scrapped.
Unless you drive in Oklahoma.

I damn near disappeared up the tailpipe of the moron ahead of me as I *ahem* accelerated in preparation to merge while I had my head turned over my left shoulder looking for my upcoming spot. This is in conflict with the local merge style, which is heavily influenced by the drag strip clutch dropping wheel spinning speed shifting school. Thankfully, no paint was exchanged, but it did cost me a pair of underwear.
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Old 09-02-2005, 01:56 PM   #11
SteveDallas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wolf
I do commend the New Jersey Turnpike for having accelleration lanes, which don't actually exist in Pennsylvania.
This is one reason I just never drive on the Schuylkill Expressway. It's got plenty of bad examples, but the South Street onramp really takes the cake.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wolf
(Kind of like the Broomall Entrance to the Blue Route, if you're here near Philadelphia).
I could be wrong, but I'm fairly sure the only reason this entrance exists as it does is that when they built the Blue Route, they were unsuccessful in getting enough easements to build three lanes south of Broomall.

If you're taking Rt. 1 southbound, it used to be that the rightmost lane disappeared with a "merge left" sign for about 50 feet and then the lane to exit onto the Blue Route reopened. Needless to say, almost anybody with half a brain would just drive on the shoulder rather than do that merge. They've now changed it so the lane just stays open all the way to the exit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hobbs
every intersection has a four-way stop sign
Actually I left that one out. Around the area where I live there are dozens upon dozens of 4-way stop signs. And then there will be one regular non-4-way stop sign right in the middle of it all. The result, of course, is that many people treat it like a 4-way stop and go on through after they've stopped for a moment, assuming that the traffic on the cross street will be stopping. (And it usually will because people have learned to look out for these intersections.)
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Old 09-02-2005, 02:14 PM   #12
wolf
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I learned to merge into a highway on Route 309 between Philadelphia and Ambler. Route 309 does not have accelleration lanes. Route 309 often does not have a line of sight from the entrance ramp that lets you check for a car-sized gap in traffic, once you psychically identify this gap, you are required to go from 0-65 in less than 2 seconds.

To this day I have significant issues about merging, to the point that this should have gone in the heebeez thread. I am surprised every time I do not die doing this. I have gone out of my way to avoid highway merging. Seriously.
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Old 09-02-2005, 02:50 PM   #13
smoothmoniker
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Here in LA, the old California 110 freeway goes from downtown to Pasadena. It was the first freeways built in LA, and one of the first anywhere. As a result, it has onramps and offramps that are, like 30 feet long. This is not an exageration. At one point, there is a road that ends at a T with the freeway, and you make a right hand turn directly onto the 65 mph freeway.
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Old 09-02-2005, 03:02 PM   #14
Hobbs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smoothmoniker
At one point, there is a road that ends at a T with the freeway, and you make a right hand turn directly onto the 65 mph freeway.
I've seen those! I've been on those! What kind of insane crazyness is that anyway?! San Diego has a few of those as well. As you get off the Hotel Circle onto I-8 there is (or used to be, haven't been there in a while) an on ramp that essentially dumps you right on the freeway in a matter of feet! Geeeeeaaaaa! Used to scare the crap out of me and I ain't afraid of nothing. I also remember an onramp to I-15 north bound where you had to drive though a neighbor hood, turn down what you thought was an alleyway and BOOM, you on the freeway. *shudder*
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Old 09-02-2005, 04:25 PM   #15
smoothmoniker
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this is the spot I was looking for

Google Maps

and this

Google Maps
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