Chapter 14 Driving in City traffic

(14.1) Adjusting to City Traffic

Traffic Density

(The number of vehicles you meet per mile)

The traffic in cities is much higher than the traffic in other areas, this causes two main risks:

  • Lack of space
  • More foolish drivers

Using the IPDE process

  • Identify
  • Predict
  • Decide
  • Execute

(14.2) Following and meeting traffic

Following Traffic

Following Distance:

  • 3-seconds in ideal situations
  • If driving conditions are not ideal, increase 3 second following distance to a longer period of time


(Drivers that follow to closely)

Managing Tailgaters:

  • Increase following distance
  • Move slightly to the right
  • Signal early/flash lights earlier
  • In extreme situations, change lanes or pull out of traffic

Meeting Traffic

If a driver on the other side of the road crosses into your lane, you should:

  • Slow down
  • Flash headlights/Blow horn
  • Move to an open space on the right

(14.3) Managing Space in City Traffic

Approaching Traffic Lignals

  • If you approach a green light, assume it will change soon
  • don't speed up before an intersection
  • Be aware of the point-of-no-return

In some situations, you may have to stop quickly, in this case:

  • Do cover the brake (have foot hover over the brake)
  • Don't ride the brake (have foot on the brake pedal)

You will need to efficiently blend into traffic in the city, to do this you should:

  • drive with traffic flow
  • stay within speed limit
  • adjust speed/position ahead of time

Selecting the Best Lane

When there are multiple lanes in your flow of traffic, there are many situations where choosing the best lane becomes critical.

  • Avoid moving between multiple lanes excessively
  • Pass a vehicle only when it is legal and safe
  • When approaching an intersection, move to the turn lane if you are turning as soon as possible, or stay towards the middle-most lane if going straight through the intersection

(14.4) Special City Situations

One-Way Streets

One way streets have:

  • broken white lines separating lanes instead of yellow ones
  • signs, parked cars, and traffic flow in one direction

when entering/exiting/driving on one way streets:

  • Position vehicle ahead of time
  • Go fromclosest lane from the one-way to the closest lane on the one-way
  • Stay in a lane that will avoid parked vehicles


Created with images by anestiev - "traffic sunset burgas"

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