Friday, April 15, 2016

How To: Four way stop - the beginners guide.

More on how to drive and not irritate those around you. Now focusing on how to handle the dreaded four way stop.

This should be logical for anyone that has been driving longer than two weeks; yet some drivers seem to really struggle with this.

We will start with the basics - because apparently they were almost entirely missed by far too many people. 

In this diagram who proceeds first?

Seems simple enough - the Orange car has the right of way. 

Why is that the case? 

Work through it logically. If the Orange car begins first when can the Green car start? Answer - almost immediately. Because the Orange car only needs to clear half the road for the Green car to proceed safely it takes less time for both cars to clear the intersection.

Orange car first - Good!
Now raise your hand if you have ever been the one in the "Green" car and had the driver of the "Orange" car try to wave you through. I bet almost everyone has either done that or had someone do it. Why is that so stupid?

If the Green car goes first it has to clear the WHOLE intersection before the Orange car can pull out. 
Green car first - BAD

The reason this matters is not for just those two cars but because of the domino effect it has. The second scenario can take significantly longer. If that is multiplied in a busy intersection it can result in big delays. The funny thing is that come people (idiots) might be saying "I am just being courteous." No - you are being a control freak. By not following the same principles you are causing delays for everyone that comes after you. Not very courteous.

Now for something a little more advanced.

The Orange car is turning left - who goes first?

The Orange car is turning left. Who goes first?

Obviously the Green car, and for the same reason as above. This is even the case if the Orange car get there "a little" before the Green car. Because the Orange car has to cross in front of the Green car the Green car would have to stay at the stop until the Orange car has cleared the intersection. By allowing the Green car to begin first the two cars can start at almost the same time - since the Green car will have cleared the path of the Orange car around the same time the Orange car is turning.

That also let other cars flow through faster as well.

Really this is something everyone should already know. Just use common sense and stop trying to wave people through to "be nice" - you are pooping on all the cars after you, just to be nice to one person. Stop it.

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