Some states call them freeways, while other states refer to them as expressways. Those with tolls are sometimes called turnpikes. But regardless of what you call them, these high-speed, controlled-access highways require a driver’s undivided attention and quick decision making.
Here are seven tips on freeway driving, provided by AAA:
- Try to look ahead at least 12 seconds to make sure you are alert to changing traffic and road conditions such as roadwork, congestion, heavy traffic, slow traffic, or stop-and-go traffic.
- Always signal at least five seconds before changing lanes. Look carefully and check your mirrors — both inside and outside rear view mirrors. And, look over your shoulder in the direction of the lane change.
- Avoid any sudden moves. Sudden moves are usually not well planned or checked, and do not give other drivers adequate time to react.
- Help other drivers enter and exit the freeway or change lanes. Adjust your speed or move to the next lane if it is clear.
- Drive in the lane that is best suited to the traffic conditions. On a two-lane freeway, use the right lane for cruising and the left lane for passing. When there are three or more lanes, use the right lane if you are traveling at a slower speed than traffic, the left lane for passing, and the center lane for cruising.
- Do not be distracted or slow down excessively to look at incidents in or near the roadway. This adds to congestion and increases the potential for additional incidents.
- Choose a legal speed that matches the flow of traffic. Speeds that are too slow or too fast will increase the risk of incidents.