Tips for Merging Lanes Safely

There are some important merging lane rules to follow when the lane you’re driving in is going to end. You need to know who to give way to and how to merge into the next lane safely. We’ve put together a few tips for you to remember when you find yourself in this situation.

Use Your Indicator Ahead Of Time

When changing lanes, overtaking, or merging, you need to show other road users what your intentions are by indicating. You need to indicate before you try to move into another lane and provide sufficient warning for other road users to act on your signal. Keep in mind that indicating your intentions doesn’t give you right of way, and you need to follow merging lane rules and other road rules in your state or territory.

Check Your Mirrors And Blind Spots

Before driving, you should always make sure that the mirrors are adjusted so that you’re able to see what’s going on around your car. Adjusting the mirrors while driving can be distracting and can cause you to lose focus on the road ahead. There are always some blind spots that you aren’t able to see in your mirrors, or areas that may be hidden because of your vehicle’s shape and structure. Before merging lanes, you should briefly move your chin to your shoulder to check the area behind your vehicle and make sure it’s clear before moving into another lane.

Make sure you check your mirrors and blindspots before you move into another lane.

Give Way To Vehicles In The Lane You’re Entering

When the lane you’re travelling in is marked with lines and is going to end, the vehicles in the lane you’re entering have right of way. This rule applies on marked roads even if you’re slightly ahead of the vehicle on the road you want to merge into.

Navigating A Zipper Merge

If you find yourself in a lane that’s going to merge into another one and there are no road markings, known as a zipper merge, the rules are slightly different. In the instance of a zipper merge, all merging traffic must give way to the vehicle slightly in front of them.

Match The Legal Speed Of The Road You’re Entering

If you’re merging lanes, you should match the legal speed of the road you’re entering, meaning you may need to slow down or speed up. You’re much less likely to cause an accident if you’re merging onto the freeway at the legal speed, rather than driving at 40km/h.

You should match the legal speed of the road you're entering when you're merging lanes.

Maintain A Safe Following Distance

When you’re going to merge, you should always wait for a safe gap to do so. You may be familiar with the 3 second rule when driving. This refers to the driving distance between your vehicle and the one in front of you to allow you to stop safely if the person in front of you suddenly brakes. Merge with enough space for the person behind you to maintain a safe following distance.

I Followed All The Rules But Somebody Hit My Car

Sometimes, despite following all the road rules, accidents still happen. The good news is that you have rights when you’re the not at fault driver in a vehicle accident. Right2Drive may be able to assist you with a like for like vehicle for the entire duration of your repairs – at no cost to you. Find out if you’re eligible for our services and apply now so we can help you get back on the road.

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