When it comes to merging with highway traffic, it's all about going with the flow.
It is the responsibility of the driver who is doing the merging, to do so safely. The high speeds and variable traffic of highway travel can make merging seem overwhelming at times, but by being alert and cooperating with other drivers you can make the move safely and easily.
The merge lane
Perhaps the biggest confusion about merging is the merge lane itself. The lane is designed to allow drivers to accelerate until they have matched the speed of vehicles already on the highway.
When you enter the merge lane, look at highway traffic to pick a gap where you want to merge. Accelerate to match the speed of traffic, then signal, make a final shoulder check and proceed into the lane.
Slowly merging onto the road is dangerous because your vehicle will be the only 1 not travelling at highway speeds. Driving too slowly makes you a hazard to other vehicles and could lead to a serious rear-end collision. On average in Saskatchewan, 46 people are injured each year while merging.
The maneuver can be especially dangerous when drivers stop in the merge lane. The high speeds of highway travel - even on entrance ramps - mean that drivers behind you may not have time to react to a stopped vehicle. Attempting to merge from a standstill position is also risky because it is difficult to accelerate quickly enough to fit into the flow of traffic.
As a driver on the highway, it is considered courteous to help others merge safely. If traffic is light enough, signal and change lanes before reaching the merge lane. This allows incoming traffic to make the transition onto the highway with ease.
If changing lanes is not an option, you can adjust your speed moderately so the merging driver can fit in ahead or behind you. Slowing too much for merging vehicles can cause confusion for other drivers and increase the risk of a collision.