Editors' Choice

Here’s How To Stop Driving Like A Massive Idiot

Diana Rolland / February 19, 2017

I’m sure you’ve heard it all before, but if everyone on the road is an asshole driver, maybe the problem is YOU. Why are you tailgating? Are you in a rush? Are you late? And why is that someone else’s fault? You need to take a long look in the mirror and realize that if you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem. If you want to be a better driver to everyone you share the road with, continue reading. Then, share with your friends and family who would benefit from this knowledge. Let’s face it, the more considerate drivers there are out there, the better off we will be.





Just because you’re in a rush, this is no excuse to tailgate the car in front of you. First of all, if the person in front brakes hard and you don’t have enough time to stop safely, guess who’s at fault? That’s right, you are, and oh, say hello to higher insurance premiums. Second of all, if the person in front brakes, then you brake, guess what just started? A chain reaction of everyone braking behind you. And guess what? You just created a traffic jam:



Also, why do people tailgate when there’s already heavy traffic? It’s not going to make the cars ahead disappear. You might as well leave some open room to try and travel at a constant speed rather than starting and stopping like you normally do.





I’m sure you’ve been in a situation before where you know a merge is coming up, so move over only to have multiple cars pass by trying to get to the front of the line? It sucks and makes you angry right? Well, what if I told you it was your own fault, and you should’ve went to the front of the line yourself? MIND BLOWN.


It’s true, when in times of heavy traffic, the zipper merge is the ideal form of traffic control because it allows (hypothetically) two equal lanes of traffic merging into one lane, one-by-one, you know – like a zipper. If both lanes are occupied with cars, there’s no space left for people to zip by to get to the front of the line is there? In fact, people who merge too early actually cause more problems in times of heavier traffic. If others are mad about you going to the front of the line, they obviously don’t know about the zipper merge and should be more educated.





WOW. How else is anyone else going to know what you plan to do? Imagine you’re at an intersection signaling to make a right turn. There’s an oncoming car in the right hand lane, but instead of going straight, they decide to make a right turn without signaling. Why the hell wouldn’t that person signal? Well, they’re inconsiderate and probably a jackass. Don’t be a jackass.


This is especially important when making lane changes. I don’t care what you’ve seen in The Fast and the Furious, signaling before merging into another lane keeps everyone calm and considerate. Weaving in and out of lanes is for the movies, not in real life.





Now after you’ve merged, be a nice person and acknowledge the person behind for having the courtesy of letting you in. Sometimes you may have to cut someone off – maybe it’s to avoid an accident or it’s heavy traffic and you need to move over. There are some ways to let the person behind you know that you’re thanking them.


We all need to take a page from the Japanese who are some of the most considerate drivers in the world:



You might also see this from many truck drivers. It’s not easy merging a tractor trailer on a busy road, so if you happen to let one in, you might see them flash their hazard lights on and off. This is merely their way of saying thank you.


Another way you could acknowledge or say thanks is by waving your hand by your rearview mirror. If it’s nice out and you have your windows rolled down, you could easily wave your hand outside as well.


Being considerate makes everyone feel better and it’ll stop people from being more aggressive than they already are.





Even though you’re in a vehicle, there are still pedestrians and cyclists to worry about. Okay, this is not to be confused with the Zack and Miri Make a Porno term the Dutch Rudder (nsfw warning). The Dutch Reach is a technique that has been in place in the Netherlands for years and is even taught in their drivers’ education classes to reduce the number of accidents involving motorists opening their doors in front of an oncoming cyclist. This collision is also known as “dooring.”


The technique is so simple that everyone who drives should know it and use it. Especially when they’re around cyclists, this move could prevent future accidents which causes bodily harm or even death.





Lifehacker actually did a story that shows that, mathematically speaking, speeding only helps on long trips. While you’re speeding, your inevitably going to tailgate someone because they’re going slower than you, and that’s when we’ll say direct you to the section above titled STOP TAILGATING.


While you’re speeding, you’re a greater risk to yourself and the other vehicles around you. Not to mention a higher chance of causing or being involved in an accident, it’s illegal and you could face fines which could set you back hundreds of dollars.


Have you tried speeding during rush hour? It just doesn’t work. That’s because you’ll never get to travel at a constant speed. Once you hit a red light, any time you’ve managed to save up until that point just goes out the window.


Follow these tips and there will be less idiot drivers on the road.