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Does Switching Lanes Get You There Faster?

  • By Ryan Skidmore

Yes! Actually, yes it does in fact expedient a trip. Myth Buster (yes, the television show) found that a car switching lanes to get to its destination arrived 4% to 25% faster than vehicles that remained in “their” lane. (is-it-faster-to-weave-through-traffic-or-stay-in-one-lane-we-finally-have-an-answer) The experiment: one lane switching vehicle was compared to 4 vehicles that picked one lane and stayed in it until the end of the trip. (is-it-faster-to-weave-through-traffic-or-stay-in-one-lane-we-finally-have-an-answer) In at least 2 cases in this experiment, it arrived just barely faster than 2 of the other vehicles, at 4% and 5% faster.

…But Dangerous! Changing lanes is dangerous, but it’s the active ingredient in getting there faster. (http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/Traffic/story?id=499882&page=1) Depending on time of day and road conditions, such as rush hour or rain, switching lanes could be substantially more dangerous than staying in one lane. The cost of arriving just a little faster might not be worth the price of a potential accident. Also, switching to a lane that is moving faster momentarily doesn’t guarantee that the lane will continue to move faster. The act of “switching lanes” can be a wildly more aggressive activity for some people. When a lane does slow down, some drivers might be tempted to switch to another lane immediately and not adequately wait for a safe opening in traffic to make the switch. The safest action is to wisely pick a lane and stay it for the majority of the trip.

Monitoring and Mentoring How do you keep your drivers safe and improve their behaviors without sitting on the passenger seat?  That used to be one of the difficult questions to answer in business.  But thankfully today with the help of a fleet tracking system, owners can now easily track driver’s routes and their behavior during that route.  You can now easily monitor speeding, hard accelerating, hard breaking, and even idling times.  It is literally like sitting on the passenger seat with all your drivers.  This information is priceless since it can help you evaluate all driving behaviors and allow you to mentor your drivers to improve.  These driving improvements can lead to significant costs savings for the company and most important it can reduce your company’s risk.  Using a fleet tracking system today can have an immediate impact on a company.  The sooner you implement a fleet tracking system the quicker you will experience positive results.

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