The unwritten rule
During the everyday traffic jam on the B9 towards Mainz, Germany I noticed an unwritten rule that (almost) everyone obays to. And it's great!
One of the many things I love about commuting is how everybody is in the same situation, regardless of what they works as or what car they drive. The CEO in his Porsche is stuck in the same traffic jam as the window cleaner in his old VW Polo. This might sound a bit weird but stick with me.
A part of my daily commute
Every morning I am going the same route: North on the B9 towards Mainz where I cross the Rhine river over the Weisenau bridge. As you might notice from the map above this is a tricky route which basically calls for a traffic jam since 3 directions are coming together to cross the river over one bridge. This is especially bad since there are only 3 bridges in total and this is the only one where you are allowed to drive above 60km/h (Not that you actually reach that speed during rush hour). So looking at the traffic report of a typical morning on that bridge you get this:
Traffic on a typical morning according to Google Maps
From this map you might quickly notice that people who want to continue north instead of going on the bridge have a bit of a problem: They are affected by a traffic jam that doesn't even go their direction. You might think. But the traffic jam and it's collective mind of the drivers has actually found a brilliant and easy way to solve that problem by just staying on the right lane if you want to go across the bridge and driving on the left to continue straight on. There are no signs or lane markings suggesting this, it just happens! I have seen other places with the same phenomenon and I am always amazed by it. So if you are driving through Germany and you find one lane of the road jammed up while the other lane is clear to go you see what people can achive without communication when all stuck together in the same situation.