Tips for Safely Changing Lanes During your Road Test
December 14, 2011
While taking your road test, the examiner may ask you to change lanes. Changing lanes is not a simple operation and the examiner will be looking to see if you follow all of the proper procedures to ensure that you change lanes safely.
Here are some tips on how to safely change lanes:
Assess the situation on the road ahead. Are there other vehicles trying to merge into your lane? Are there pedestrians ahead who are about to cross? Should you even change lanes? A big thing to look out for are vehicles in the lane you are about to change into flashing their brake lights or slowing down, it might indicate that there’s trouble in that lane and that changing lanes wouldn’t be worth it.
Use the rearview mirror to check motorists behind the vehicle. Check all of your mirrors before changing lanes. Is anyone behind you or in the far lane preparing to move into the lane you want to enter? Are there vehicles speeding up to get in on the lane you’re trying to change into?
Make a habit of always signaling other drivers about what you’re about to do on the road. Letting other motorists know your intentions will keep both you and them safe. This is especially true for changing lanes – drivers behind you have to make their driving decisions based on what you do. Make a habit of always giving signals for everybody’s benefit.
Check your blind spot before moving in. Before changing lanes, quickly turn your head with your chin over your shoulder to check your blind spots. It’s amazing how quickly a vehicle can move up and totally disappear in your blind spot.
When it comes to intersections, only change lanes before or after passing them. Remember, it is illegal to change lanes within 100 feet before or after an intersection.
For more practice consider taking a simulated behind-the-wheel online prep course offered through OfficialDMV.com.