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Kraigmo's avatar

What is the thought-process of the Driver, who does not immediately accelerate on freeway onramps to match freeway speed?

Asked by Kraigmo (8150points) January 31st, 2010

Many drivers, when entering a freeway onramp, do not accelerate to a high speed. They accelerate all right… to about 55 mph… but why are they not entering the freeway at the speed of the drivers on the freeway? They think they are being “slow and safe” but are just being stupid and unsafe.

What is their reasoning? How can I empathize with them more?

Not talking about trucks and Volkswagens and the disabled, and those following another car here, they do not have a problem of will, but of ability

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17 Answers

Self_Consuming_Cannibal's avatar

That he/she are not sure that he will be able to get over and would rather go a little slower rather than run out of room in the merging lane and end up on the shoulder.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

In my case, my car (M-B 220D) doesn’t have the acceleration that many other cars do (0–60 in about 1 minute). I try to stay to the right, even using the breakdown lane, until I can safely merge into traffic. I’m not being stubborn, my car just won’t accelerate faster. I’ll stay as far to the right as I can so you can get past me.

faye's avatar

Fear and more fear. It’s hard if you don’t do it regularly. I’d like to know what’s in the mind of the one idiot who won’t move over thus making me slow down.

chyna's avatar

That they are on their cell phone and could care less what anyone else thinks?
Ok, that wasn’t helpful. What @Self_Consuming_Cannibal said seems very helpful

Kraigmo's avatar

Well like I pointed out, I never wannna blame someone whose car just cannot go that fast. But even on downhill onramps, some people could take advantage of the downhill gravity, but do not. And I think its out of fear, like @faye said. Or ignorance. The first thing one should do on the onramp, is look in their driver-side rearview, then look in their driver-side blind spot, then speed the hell up and merge in.

Holden_Caulfield's avatar

It is all in how you can relate to other people’s perspective. It could be because they are older and less assertive, or it could be that they have had a bad experience as in a vehicular acciudent and are cautious. There car may even be unable to accelerate to the speed of others… there are so many other possibilities, that trying to understand the infinite possible reasonings of others becomes nearly impossible. I think and believe that if you can simply come to the realization that everyone is different and they are a product of their lives and what they have experienced, and do not necessarily think as we do… then it makes more sense when someone does something that does not make sense to us. It makes sense to them. Does not make it right or wrong, but rather… how they are in any given situation.

beancrisp's avatar

It is because of stupid fools that don’t get over to the inside lane to make it easier for people to merge.

faye's avatar

@beancrisp my point exactly.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

I know I’m guilty of being impatient with drivers who don’t accelerate quickly to freeway speed. (I’ll often yell, “Ramp up means GOING FASTER!”) I always thought it was lack of assertiveness on other people’s part.

SABOTEUR's avatar

Some drivers are simply afraid of the freeway.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

There are so many reasons. Here are a few that occur to me off the top of my head:

1. A lot of freeway on-ramps have view obstructions to the sides, so it’s difficult or impossible to see the traffic to the left that is already on the freeway and in the right-hand lane. So drivers accelerate to a “reasonable” speed, hoping to fit in.

2. Many drivers still believe that freeway speeds are “mostly” around 55 mph, so they think that they have accelerated to the “proper” speed.

3. If you don’t know what the traffic is going to be like on the freeway (see #1 above, and recall that when you’re on an on-ramp you often can’t see the traffic “ahead” that is already on the road, until you’re there) ... if the traffic is stopped (which often happens in and around urban areas), then obviously 55 mph is way too fast. So it’s easier to slow down from this speed, too.

4. Any other road condition, visibility, or traffic condition that might apply. Not to mention, the car ahead of the one that you’re pissed off at.

5. Curving on-ramps and/or ramps that merge with other ramps.

6. A lot of exit and on-ramps have posted speed limits… on the ramp itself.

Judi's avatar

a scared driver is a dangerous driver.

pear_martini's avatar

Maybe they are yapping on the phone or to someone else in the car…. or elderly.

betterdays's avatar

Be careful about poking fun at Volkswagens… I have a 08’ Touareg with a V10 TDI engine in it that has two speeds… super-fast and rocketship.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

The contemptible practice of doing whatever is required to keep that holy ECON light on at all times no matter what inconvenience or hazard it represents to others.

SABOTEUR's avatar



Or a combination of both.

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