No matter how long you've been driving, you may get anxious any time you have to merge onto a highway. There's something about merging into rapidly moving traffic that can make you sweat.
While this can be challenging, there are tips you can follow to help you maintain your safety.
- Understand the entrance ramp: This includes many things, such as whether there is a stop sign at the end of it, the length and which direction you are merging. The sooner you know this, the better off you'll be.
- Prepare accordingly: Activate your turn signal as you move down the ramp and toward the highway. Also, begin your search for an open space in traffic. Keep in mind that the people already on the highway have the right of way.
- Avoid hesitation: It's one thing to take your time, but another thing entirely to hesitate. If you hesitate and/or hit your brakes, there's a greater chance of someone from behind striking your vehicle. Your goal is to make the merge as seamless as possible.
Once you make your way into traffic, turn off your turn signal and ensure that you are up to speed.
If you're involved in an accident while merging, such as someone hitting you from behind, immediately move your vehicle to the shoulder of the road.
After checking yourself for injuries, do the following:
- Call 911.
- Exchange information with the other drivers, if possible.
- Get medical treatment.
- Contact your insurance company to file a claim.
Doing these things will put you on the right track to protecting your legal rights.