More Inconsiderateness

Yet more inconsiderate driving. On my way into work, a drive I must have done a few thousand times - I was trailed by a prize plonker. Let me explain the situation.

I travel in on a dual carriageway. This splits into two single lane roads. The left road soon jams up with traffic, the right road is fairly free moving (until about a quarter of a mile after the split). For non UKians, we drive on the left.

Now, I have this down to a fine art. I know that the right hand road will become a traffic jam a little while further on. Therefore I travel at a constant speed, keeping a good gap with the guy in front. The gap is not too long (a few truck lengths), but it's long enough so that if he decides to jump into the queue of traffic at short notice, or if he decides to turn left down a side street once the road splits then he'll just be gone by the time I get there.

The guy in front is braking and accelerating as he is at the end of a moving queue. He is, however, going at the same average speed as me so I'm not lane hogging. Indeed, if I went faster I'd have to be slaming on the brakes myself.

The guy behind me can see this. He can see the traffic in front. He can see that the gap is not increasing. He can see the stationary traffic on the left leaving me nowhere to go to let him past to tailgate the next guy.

So why is it that he was two feet from my bumper and swearing at me? If I closed the cap I'd have been travelling at the same rate, but with much less room to brake. I'd have been a car sandwich in the event of an accident.

More than this, by the time we get to the junctions which take cars away from what is now a single lane road, the car in front was in the stationary traffic, just about to get to the junction, and I had caught it up.

Even if I'd sat on his bumper we'd have still reached that point at the same time.... and I knew this, driving that route every day, knowing the gap to achieve this result. I'd much rather move continuously, than move fast with lots of stops - continuous flow also reduces the chances of traffic jams.

Though there are two minor turn offs before this point, these are side roads to residential areas, not thoroughfares.

Therefore the guy behind arrived at his first real opportunity to turn off having tailgated me, no later than he would have done had I tailgated the guy in front and with a sore throat and achey finger for hurling abuse.