General Question

MagicalMystery's avatar

Was I wrong for giving the car in front of me "the brights" or was he wrong for reacting aggressively?

Asked by MagicalMystery (900points) November 25th, 2010

I live in the NY metro area. Today I was driving to my parents’ house, and to get there, I take a two lane highway where drivers typically drive between 65 and 80 (left lane). Left lane is traditionally the “passing lane.”

Around here, if you are not driving fast in the left lane, you risk getting cut off from the right. I will drive between 70 and 75 in the left lane. People will drive faster and when I see them, I will get in the right lane. When someone tailgates me or flashes me the brights I will get out of the way.

Today, I came up to a car in the left lane that was going probably 50 or 55. I flashed my brights (it was daytime). He slammed on the brakes, then he started to get in the right lane. As I went to drive past him, he came back suddenly into the left lane, cutting me off, forcing me to jam on the brakes. He then did it again- going into the right lane, and then swerving back to the left lane in front of me as I tried to pass him, and then he slammed on the brakes. He went back to the right lane a third time, and I passed him. At that point I decided I was going to stay calm and look straight ahead, and if he came into my lane and hit me it would be his fault. I passed without incident. I did not flip him the bird or anything as I passed, I did not want to give him the satisfaction

Was I wrong for giving him the brights or was he wrong for trying to run me off the road?

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57 Answers

Afos22's avatar

No you were right, and double right for passing him with no further altercation. People are just idiots on the road, and you don’t know what they will do. Well handled. I would have layed on my horn if he cut me off like you say.

snowberry's avatar

Golly, I don’t know. The guy sounds irrational and mentally unbalanced. Dangerous too. I’m new to driving in the East. I hate driving here, because it seems to me that a large numbers of people are like this.

gailcalled's avatar

Right or wrong is irrelevant if you’re in a car crash. Remember the term “road rage”?

Avoid lunatic drivers at all costs; what you’re seeing is transferred anger, not that it matters.

Let it go..

Aethelwine's avatar

Wouldn’t it have been better to pass him in the right hand lane instead of flashing your brights? I think both of you were inconsiderate. Him for driving slow in the left lane, and you for flashing your brights. You did the right thing by ignoring his erratic behavior.

but what do I know, I live in the Midwest.

ninjacolin's avatar

It’s been extra slippery where I live lately. I got snow tires though, so I dominate the road. :)

It was already dark and I was in the slower lane behind a super slow semi. The fast lane was going just a bit faster than me and I wanted to be like them so I took the opportunity to squeeze into a small gap and speed up. Interesting case here.. There was enough room that the driver didn’t HAVE to hit his brakes. In fact, he didn’t. Instead, he honked, sped up to me and put his brights on for as long as I was in front of him. I reacted by hitting my brakes. I slowed him down to way below the speed limit before finally speeding away. So we both lost time on the road but I wasn’t in any rush.

When I read the question title, I was curious if maybe you were writing about me.

Brights are a good way to communicate. If you flash them, I would read that as: “Excuse me, please…” If you leave them on, I would read that as: “Please step on your brakes and slow me down to a halt, thank you.”

Afos22's avatar

@jonsblond Magicalmystery never said if there was a car in the right lane. It is also illegal to pass in the right lane or stay in the left lane if the right lane is free.

gailcalled's avatar

@ninjacolin?: I’m sure that you had fun, but I hope you have an organ donor card in your wallet. What is so wonderful about playing “chicken” with large, powerful lethal weapons?

Not everyone knows or understands the arcane language of flashing brights or steady brights.

Aethelwine's avatar

@Afos22 That’s why I answered how I did. I know the laws of driving slow in the left lane. If magicalmystery had given us more information, I may have answered differently.

ninjacolin's avatar

@gailcalled I try to teach those who aren’t adept at the lingo through example. :) haha.

The real miscommunication was in the fact that I didn’t actually cut him off. I clearly startled him by cutting into the other lane but truthfully, it wasn’t an inconvenience to him. I sped up to match the faster speed and everything. Some people just seem to think that being cut off means having someone enter your lane without their permission. It’s not. Being cut off is a matter of inconveniencing someone. If there’s no inconvenience, there’s no need to get upset.

gailcalled's avatar

@ninjacolin: You may not get upset, being a rational driver. It’s the other guy that is worrisome.

ninjacolin's avatar

@gailcalled There are crazies on the road, it’s true. But those difficult conversations have to be had somehow, else we’ll never progress as a society. Besides, I like to think that in a pinch I could be crazier than the crazies, so I’m personally not too worried about them.. they’re the ones that have to deal with me.

AmWiser's avatar

Unfortunately you were driving on a day when many drivers are not road savvy. I understand what you went through because I ran into many of those same drivers on my trip today. It was miserable but I had to remind myself, many of these drivers probably don’t drive the highway often and it can be a bit intimidating.

chyna's avatar

It’s not worth dying over. I think the whole flashing the brights is just a way to piss someone off, and you never know who you are dealing with. It could be someone with a gun or who has had an extremely bad day and doesn’t mind taking you out. What is the big deal to get somewhere five minutes later as long as you are safe?

Aethelwine's avatar

@chyna There was a woman in our local town that lost her life a few years back because she went crazy when someone cut her off. She started driving erratically and ended up crashing, severing her head! It’s so sad how impatient some people get. It’s just not worth it.

Supacase's avatar

You didn’t do anything wrong, IMO. I do get annoyed if someone brights me, especially if I am already going over the speed limit. I don’t ride the left lane, though, so this would be assuming I am passing someone in the right lane but not as quickly as you would like.

The guy totally overreacted no matter what the actual situation was regarding other cars in the right lane or whatever. Give you a dirty look, honk as you pass… he had several ways of letting you know he was irritated. Seems he was full-on angry, though. He could have caused a serious accident over something trivial.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

That gets a call reporting his license plate number to 911 immediately.

YARNLADY's avatar

You were in the right – You lived through it – Lucky you.

augustlan's avatar

I live on the east coast, and am not sure what the laws are regarding briefly flashing your brights, but I am sure of the laws for left lane driving: Slower traffic must keep right. It is also illegal to pass on the right.

In our area, it is pretty common to briefly flash your brights for three reasons: One is the exact situation you mention, to call attention to the slower driver in front of you to move to the right. Another is to alert an oncoming vehicle that they have their brights on and need to dim them. I’ve never known anyone to get a ticket for either of those. The third instance is illegal, though… alerting an oncoming car of a speed trap.

So, in this area anyway, I’d say you did nothing wrong. That doesn’t mean I’d be quick to do it though… too much road rage out there as it is.

john65pennington's avatar

In my state, flashing your bright lights from the behind the vehicle in front of you, is illegal. its considered careless driving on the face value and can be considered reckless driving, depending on the circumstance. using the bright lights can cause an accident, especially at night.

My police department has a General Order that states officers cannot use their spotlights to flash into the rear of the vehicle ahead. some accidents have been caused by this, when the driver loses control of his vehicle, because of blindness of the spotlight. spotlights are admissable after the stop has been made.

To answer your question, you were in the wrong. you iniatiated the road rage, which upset the driver ahead. had there been an accident, resulting from your question, you would have been at-fault.

jerv's avatar

I say that you were in the right.

@john65pennington There are many differences between the Northeast and your neck of the woods. Around here, that is no more “initiating road rage” than use of a turn signal. Then again, around here, merely being on the same road can incite road rage.
As for spotlights, I can see that but bear in mind that spotlights are often brighter than even my high beams, as well as being more focused. By your logic, HID headlights are also illegal; I know that those always blind me, as do the light bars on most new police vehicles (both use the same xenon bulbs)

JLeslie's avatar

You were right. Although many many people do not know a high beam flash means please move over so I can pass. We once had a question on fluther that touched on it. The other driver is an asshole and dangerous. Once he started breaking and blocking you, I would say stay as far from him as possible, he is irrational and stupid.

cazzie's avatar

So, it’s common practice on this area of road to flash brights? Yeah, less dangerous during the day, I guess, but I was always taught (Wisconsin Drivers license) that flashing your brights was illegal. I thought that that was what the horn was for. I disagree with @john65pennington that you initiated the road rage…. it’s never OK to react like this guy did.

SuperMouse's avatar

I spent the majority of my time behind the wheel in Southern California also known as “Land of the Freeway Shootings” so I would not be willing to take the chance of flashing my brights at anyone even if they did offend me. I reserve the horn or any kind of actions like that for emergency situations. That being said, I do think the other driver wwwaaaayyyy overreacted. Being called out with a flash of the brights for going too slow in the fast lane is not worth dying or killing someone for.

jerv's avatar

@cazzie It is also common in parts of Europe. As for the horn, that is usually the signal for, “Hey, asshole!” or roughly equivalent to gunshots in LA. I save the horn for impending collisions only.

That said, drivers from CT,RI, lower NY, and Eastern MA are a bit off and take some getting used to. Having grown up in New England, I am used to aggressive drivers with a sense of entitlement, but many flatlanders seem to have difficulty with the different rules in that region. For instance here in WA, people drive near the speed limit on the interstate; that is unheard of in the Northeast where 15–20 over is the norm.

JLeslie's avatar

@cazzie Your horn is a warning for a dangerous situation as @jerv points out. Most cities there are laws against using your horn because can you imagine the noise pollution? Cities are already noisy. Flashing lights is safe. It is the safest way to indicate to the person in front of you, you want to go faster. Safer than driving up on the tail of his car, safer than weaving around traffic to go faster. The only thing etiquette asks for, is that we wait to flash our beams whenthe car in front has an opening to actually get over. If he has a truck next to him, not nice to also be flashing him.

Flashing your brights is illegal to do for oncoming traffic to warn them there is a speed trap ahead.

JLeslie's avatar

Oh, but I needed to add that driving school does not teach light flashing to go faster, no one learns it formally in the US from what I can tell? I think they do teach it in Europe? In the US the drivers ed guy is going to say, “you shouldn’t be in a rush, give yourself enough time to get to where you are going. You only save 2 minutes on a typical 20 minute drive to go a little faster,” blah blah. I find it horrible they don’t teach this as an alternative for the people who do drive fast and do tailgate which is horribly reckless.

Aethelwine's avatar

@JLeslie Flashing your brights at a car in front of you is also illegal, and dangerous as well. This is why it is not taught. I get auras from migraines, and any quick flash of a bright light can set it off for me. This would be very dangerous for me while driving if I had an aura while driving caused by someone impatient behind me, flashing their brights. As @john65pennington stated, accidents are caused by people flashing their brights.

I’m so glad I live where I do. People just pass if they have a slow driver in front of them, or wait until they can pass.

JLeslie's avatar

@jonsblond How do you drive at night with an oncoming car on a two lane road? I am very sensitive to light and that is actually difficult for me even with regular lights.

A flash of beams from behind you, especially during the day, is less flash in your eye than the sun streaming through the trees. Plus, you can get a rear view mirror that dims that bright light from behind you. If you are epileptic, and a simple flash affects you, it sounds to me like you are not safe to drive.

Slower traffic is supposed to stay right, passing on the left. In some states it is illegal to pass on the right (we are only talking freeway here, none of this apllies to local roads, I would never flash my lights to go faster on a local road). If someone is driving 60 in a 65 in the left lane causing other drivers to weave it is dangerous also. Not that the other drivers should be changing lanes dangerously, obviously. Plus, slowing down, needing to brake causes a traffic wave, slowing all traffic down, brake lights ar a no-no on the highway if possible to avoid using them. but I am kind of getting onto another topic.

@john65pennington I just went back and read your answer. Considering you live in my state, I guess it is good to know it is illegal here. I don’t see how you can equate a quick flash of beams to a cop shining a light in your car, much brighter, and a flipping cop is on your tail. Now I have to think about pulling over, whatever the hell I did wrong, how I am pissed I am getting pulled over, etc. Do you have any statistics of people crashing from someone flashing beams to change lanes to let someone pass?

JLeslie's avatar

This is very interesting about different laws by state regarding headlights. Look part way down the page at the laws by state. It seems this page adresses oncoming headlights for the most part, except for California that specifically adresses it, which makes me think it is legal to flash beams from behind in most states? Not sure. @john65pennington check out what it say about TN. I realize wikipedia is not the end all be all of information, but I thought I would point it out.

Aethelwine's avatar

@JLeslie It’s the sudden quick flash that sets it off for me. Oncoming cars are not a problem because the light is constant. If it’s too bright for me, I have time to look to the right and avoid the light a bit, but again, that’s not a sudden flash of bright light like someone coming up behind me. Do people really flash their lights during the day to tell someone to move over? I’ve never seen this. The whole thing to me sounds very rude. Someone telling another driver to get out of the way because their time is more precious? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not one of those people that drives slow, especially in the left lane, I may drive 5 miles over the limit, but that’s it. If someone in front of me is driving super slow, I wait until I can pass. I would never flash my lights to tell someone to get over.

JLeslie's avatar

@john65pennington Page 20 of the TN handbook for driving talks about high beams and does not mention it being illegal to flash beams to communicate with a driver in front. It does address the issue you spoke of which is following a car with your bright lights on. It seems like they are two different things to me. Although, I didn’t find any specific case law where it might have been challenged.

jca's avatar

@jonsblond: Around NY metro area, people are very cut throat. If someone is behind me, up close, no matter how fast I am going, if they want to go faster I get out of the way. Otherwise, what happens is they will swerve around you on the right and possibly cut you off. It’s so much easier and safer to get out of the way. Flashing the brights is just a reminder, a way to get their attention “hello, I’m here, please move.” To me, it’s ruder to not move. Of course, if they can’t move, like if there’s traffic in right lane, the person that wants to hurry just has to be patient. However, if there’s room, why would the person NOT move? It’s like if you’re walking in a hallway or on sidewalk and someone wants to pass, if they walk faster, let them pass and get them off your tail.

JLeslie's avatar

@jonsblond Picture it :) we are driving down the interstate and both in the left lane, the road is fairly congested. When traffic is easing up a little where you will probably be able to get over to the right, I flash my beams, yes it might be daytime. I have maintained a safe driving distance the entire time I have been behind you, you have no way to know I want to pass. I could wait to get in the right lane and go around you, but that traffic is pretty much moving as slow as you are, if not slower. So, I have to get right, maybe right again, wait for breaks in traffic, or you can just move over and let me go, and drive in a lane that is driving more your speed anyway.

If someone flashes me, or is driving too close behind me (which I think is awful and reckless) I move over and let them go. If they want to drive faster than me, go ahead, I don’t have any ego on the road. Flashing lights is not to be obnoxious and rude, although I will agree that when a car is tailgating, and flashing flashing flashing it is obnoxious and rude, but that is not what I am talking about.

Aethelwine's avatar

@jca I agree with you. I do not drive in the left lane unless I am passing. I would never hold up traffic. I feel both types of drivers are being inconsiderate. The people driving slow in the left lane, and the people riding the slow driver’s butt expecting them to move.

JLeslie's avatar

@jonsblond I wanted to say I did not think you are trying to defend slow drivers in the left lane, I was not thinking you are one of them, I am talking generalities.

JLeslie's avatar

Oh, and I think this happens more often between people who are both driving above the speed limit. Lol. Most often slow drivers are in the right lane. It could be a guy driving 80 who wants the guy driving 72 to get out of the way.

jerv's avatar

@jca @jonsblond Yeah, you do not want to be in the left lane in the Northeast unless you are up to speed. There are some places where they don’t always change lanes to overtake you, if you know what I mean.

Personally, I am rather photo-sensitive myself due in part to too many night-shift jobs, and too long inside a Navy ship, never seeing sunlight. At night, I have my mirror flipped using that little switch that ever car I’ve ever seen had on the inside rearview mirror, so even HID high beams from behind are less obnoxious than halogen low-beams in the oncoming lane. And if flashing lights are an issue, you must really hate any place where there are police cruiser patrolling the roads, or where ambulances and/or fire crews are running around. I know I hate their “camera flash” lightbars, and I have been blinded many times by a cruiser on the side of the road pulling someone else over. I wonder how many accidents the police have caused by blinding motorists with their light bars…..

BTW, most places have laws about slower traffic keeping right, or only using the left lane to pass. Regardless, the guy in front here was likely breaking the law, and I have seen people ticketed (mostly in the Northeast) for doing the speed limit while everybody else is going considerably faster. See, the faster cars are all “in tune” so it’s the one doing the speed limit that is actually posing a danger, and the police really don’t like motorists endangering other motorists, so they will ticket the most dangerous cars they see.

@JLeslie Anybody doing only 72MPH on Rt 2 going through Arlington is suicidal :P

Aethelwine's avatar

@jerv Definitely a different lifestyle here where I live. The cops from the small town I just moved from were known for pulling people over if they were going just 1 or 2 mph over the posted speed limit. My husband just got a ticket the other day for doing 66 in a 55. I can’t afford a ticket, so I behave! ;)

jerv's avatar

@jonsblond There are a few small MA towns outside of the Boston metroplex that will also nail you for 37 in a 35. Personally, I do whatever the two cars in front of me are doing unless I know the areas well enough to know the real road rules.

snowberry's avatar

How come you folks always bitch about people going under the speed limit in the far left lane? What about the MULTIPLE times they can’t stand it if you’re going the speed limit in the right lane? Or simply driving the speed limit anywhere? Every day I get tailgated for driving the speed limit. Am I missing something? Sounds like a double standard to me…

The speed limit is not actually a limit; it’s just a suggestion. Where I live, even the police speed, tailgate, etc. But they have NO problem handing out speeding tickets when they can.

jerv's avatar

@snowberry Slower traffic to the right, faster traffic to the left. If you don’t understand that rule then I wonder if you understand why people can’t drive on the left side of the road. It really is the same reason; there is a proper place for everything.
If you wish to argue the point then, at least to my mind, your logic would make having sex in public or pissing on other people’s legs okay as well. Again, there is a proper place for everything.

As for driving the speed limit in the right lane, it depends on the road. Here in Seattle, that is a quick way to rear-end someone as the right lane is mostly for entry and exit. In some parts of MA, the right lane is the only safe place for someone that slow.

Trillian's avatar

“How come you folks always bitch about people going under the speed limit in the far left lane?” Um… because the left lane is for passing. I always wondered what the genius going slow in the left lane could possibly be thinking. Thank you for enlightening me. ( I really must see my mechanic about having those photon torpedoes mounted)

JLeslie's avatar

@snowberry speed limits are one thing, driving recklessly is another. Sometimes speeding is reckless, not always. Sometimes driving slowly is reckless. If all traffic is driving 75 and you put yourself at 55 in front of those cars, that doesn’t sound very safe, why do you want to do that? Why do you want to be in the left lane? Why not drive with the other cars who are driving more your speed? Let’s say there ws no law in speed, no limits, only a law for passing; which lane are you going to pick, the one with people driving more or less the speed you do, or people driving much faster? Which makes intuitive sense to you regardless of the law?

jca's avatar

@snowberry: there are a lot of clueless people in the left lane – around here (NY) they often seem to have Connecticut plates. They look like zombies staring straight ahead, oblivious to the parade that is forming behind them, or the people that will cut them off from the right. Here, cops on the highway will allow you to go about 10 mph faster than the limit. the limit on one highway is 65 and you can go by the troopers doing 75.

snowberry's avatar

Now this IS interesting. You people who took exception to my post didn’t bother to read past the first sentence. Here’s the rest, since you didn’t get it the first time:

“What about the MULTIPLE times they can’t stand it if you’re going the speed limit in the right lane? Or simply driving the speed limit anywhere? Every day I get tailgated for driving the speed limit. Am I missing something? Sounds like a double standard to me…

The speed limit is not actually a limit; it’s just a suggestion. Where I live, even the police speed, tailgate, etc. But they have NO problem handing out speeding tickets when they can.”

And I don’t drive in the left lane unless I have to. I also have had a clean driving record for the last 6 years, and I have no desire to get a speeding ticket just so some jerk behind me wants me to speed.

@jca Sounds like the folks where I live, only with their own particular twist.

Trillian's avatar

“What about the MULTIPLE times they can’t stand it if you’re going the speed limit in the right lane? Or simply driving the speed limit anywhere?” These are not the same people who are justifiably irritated with you deliberately going slow in the passing lane. Yualso cannot consider yourslf to be on the same level as the plice. If you feel tey are breaking the law, get the car information and take it up with them. That has nothing to do with you being discourteous by breaking the law. Yep. Camping out slow in the passing lane is against the law. And holding up traffic in the passing lane is just plain rude.

jerv's avatar

@snowberry I picked up on that too, and guess what? If you are going a different speed that the other people in your lane then it doesn’t matter which lane you are in our whether you are going faster or slower; you are still a douchebag for doing so.
Every place I’ve lived, they ticket you for interfering with the safe and orderly flow of traffic. The only times they really ticket you for speed alone is if you are alone (as opposed to part of a pack), or if you are just egregious (like 149 in a 45). And yes, you may get ticketed if you do the speed limit, though it will likely be for a more serious offense like reckless driving; they REALLY don’t like people endangering others like that.

snowberry's avatar

@jery Well I have had more than a few conversations about this with the police, and they tell me that if you are speeding just like everyone else, you still stand a chance of getting a ticket. I’m not into speeding tickets, and have every intention of avoiding them now and in the future.

If you think I’m a “douchebag” for driving the speed limit, and you tail gate folks who do, you are part of the problem.

I also Do Not place myself on the same plane as the police (sorry if you got that impression). I have done exactly as you have suggested in the past, and called them up to give feedback. But it’s not always possible to get the car number.

jerv's avatar

@snowberry Different places do things differently.
I have no problem with you doing the speed limit, but doing so in the wrong lane in such a way to become a hazard to others is an issue. Nabbing speeders generates revenue, but removing road hazards saves lives.
BTW, tailgaters are just as dangerous and have a similar lack of lane discipline. I just change lanes, and if they try to block me then they will prove their status as an asshat. Woe be to the poor bastard who does so in front of a cop, as asshats are more likely to be ticketed than mere speeders. If that were not so then I would not have a clean driving record ;)

Avoiding tickets isn’t a matter of obeying the rules so much as not being an asshat. You won’t get ticketed if you don’t draw attention to yourself. Driving alone or at the head of a pack will get you noticed whereas driving in the middle of a pack will help you blend in. Driving at a speed dramatically different than others will get you noticed, as will swerving and changing lanes a lot. Staying in your lane at the same speed as everyone else is like a cloaking device. Driving a car with a huge skull on the good will get you noticed, so I drive more cautiously than those with normal paint jobs.

snowberry's avatar

@jery OK, and so you don’t have a problem with me, or do you?

jerv's avatar

@snowberry Nah. I may not like your answers on this question, but I still like you.

jca's avatar

around here, if you do the speed limit in the left lane, you will have everyone cutting you off from the right, outraged and flipping you the bird as a hint.

JLeslie's avatar

@snowberry If you are in the right lane going the speed limit I am fine with it, as long as you are also good with merging traffic and all of that, adjusting speed, even momentarily, for incoming traffic. I don’t know what type of driver you are, I would never assume, but when someone drives slowly (the speed limit is usually on the slower side) and seems to lack confidence in their driving, like not knowing the traffic around them, difficulty changing lanes and dealing with other drivers around them, it is not a great situation, and frustrating for other drivers.

I am both types of drivers. I many times go the speed limit around where I live. What I know is it is very easy to not be aware of all the cars around me when I drive the limit. When I am speeding I know everything, because I am passing people. As long as the slow driver is still checking their rear view mirror every few seconds, can anticipate when the fast driver is coming up behind him and need to cut over in front of you to continue his speed or exit, it is fine. For me it is more about being a good driver and being able to cope well with the traffic around you.

Now, that is all freeway traffic I am talking about. On local roads if you go the speed limit and people don’t like it, they just have to suffer. If they tailgate you dangerously, I would say let them pass you. Some roads I fell almost sick to my stomach when someone is going the speed limit in front of me, because the road typically moves much faster, but I would never tail someone. For the majority of the time I drive the speed limit or five mph above on local roads, especially the windy ones near me.

About the cops, there are some asshole cops who drive recklessly, and too fast, and ticket people, even though they are a menace on the road themselves. I agree with @Trillian get their tag number. I know several cops who never ticket for speeding, unless it is trully down right dangerous weaving through much slower traffic, because they speed themselves. They, the very very fast driver is the same problem as the very very slow driver, not driving with the general flow of traffic. When I lived in MD, I don’t know if it is the same now, cops focused on drunk drivers, full stops at stop signs, and speeding on local roads, and singles in the HOV. Driving fast on the highways was not really something I noticed people getting pulled over for.

jca's avatar

@JLeslie : correct around here, too. Unless you’re driving a crazy speed on the freeway, it’s ok. They generally let you go up to 80 on freeway, I will usually do 70 if I see a cop to be on safe side.

On local roads, in my town, I do the speed limit, and am strict about that, because the cops in my town are very strict and looking for a reason to pull people over. I was being tailgated once and got up to 50 in a 35, and since I was first, I got pulled over. The cop let me go, he saw I was being tailed, and what he said was “no matter how fast you’re going, he’ll still be up your ass.”

So about a month ago, I was doing the limit and a guy was tailing me and we passed a cop/speed trap. I stopped in the middle of the road, asked the cop if he could talk to the guy and I explained how I was trying to do the limit but he was up my ass. The cop could see that, so he said ok, got out of his car and went to talk to the guy in the middle of the road!

snowberry's avatar

Actually I am constantly checking my rear-view mirror, and everywhere else (the price of not checking it means I have an excellent chance of being rear-ended).John65Pennington suggested that I put on my emergency blinkers for the tailgaters. I’m delighted to tell you it works wonderfully. They seem to think I have car trouble and might stop suddenly, which of course if the jerk hits me, I would. LOL

jerv's avatar

One thing I like about the Seattle area is that tailgaters generally are impatient enough to pull into the HOV lane and pass you there as opposed to riding your ass for miles. Of course, a single-occupant vehicle in the HOV lane doing 75+ in a 60-zone while everyone else is doing 65-ish tends to reap it’s own rewards :D

Having limped a few marginally mobile vehicles down the road, I have to say that there are some people who don’t get the four-way thing. Maybe that is regional? However, damn near everyone understands brake lights, and it doesn’t take much pressure to activate them (not nearly enough to actually brake anyways), nor does it require taking your hand off the wheel. Then again, I have enough skulls on my car that people tend to give me a wide berth anyways.

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