Why You’re Always in Traffic Jams and The Solution

Traffic jams are an everyday occurrence especially if you live somewhere decently populated. Sometimes, even though traffic is constantly moving, the speed slows to a crawl out of nowhere. This is especially true when you hit a stoplight and even though it’s a local road during non-rush hour, somehow, there’s a backup of cars for several blocks.

So why does this happen?

As it happens, humans aren’t very patient. Whenever we see space in front of us, we tend to hit the gas to close that distance as fast as possible. However, that also means that we have to stop when that distance is closed. With each start and stop, time is needed to accelerate and decelerate the car. If each car takes just two seconds to accelerate and decelerate, then with just ten cars, there would be a twenty-second delay between the light turning green and the last car starting to move. Now imagine this happening all the way down a highway.

So how do you fix this? First, share this so that more people are aware and not make this mistake and second, try to maintain a constant slow speed whenever you find yourself in a jam. Even if there is not a traffic jam, try not to accelerate too much at one time. Remember, whenever you start and stop abruptly, this effect is multiplied in the cars behind you.

Of course, traffic jams can also be caused by car accidents or road repairs and things like that but they can still be made worse by this behavior. So instead of skipping the line and trying to fit back in right before the point of merging, just take your place in the line and maintain as constant a speed as possible and trying to minimise the number of complete stops you make. If enough people do this, our traffic flow all around the world will become so much smoother.

Oh and the triangle islands at intersections really do help. Instead of having to make a 90-degree turn, cars can merge directly into traffic on a perpendicular road. First, it’s safer and second, it frees up a lane and third, it also doesn’t slow down incoming traffic as much. Smart planning by the city council is just as important as the people using the roads themselves.

That’s all for this time. I’ll talk to you later.

I found a video on YouTube (by ASAPScience) that explains this along with several more details:

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