Brisbane Drivers Can't Merge? (unedited, pls run at 2x to save time)

I experienced the following incident today. I was tempted to crash into this taxi not giving way at a merge when I was clearly ahead of them. I needed my car later in the day so decided I probably shouldn't. What's the forum's opinion on the matter? Do Brisbane drivers just not know how to merge? Or am I am complete idiot for thinking this?

Poll Options expired

  • 138
    Op at fault
  • 140
    13cabs at fault
  • 6
    Town planning at fault
  • 9
    Op should have crashed into 13cabs to claim right of way
  • 6

closed Comments

    • Awaiting pegasx to comment on this link relevant to op's jurisdiction

  • +3

    Cab is a douche and if you could prove that you are in front, the cab would be undeniably at fault.

    Second finding - what a nice day in Brisbane.

  • +12

    I think most people would see you as being a dick trying to cut in line, rather than thinking you're trying to reduce congestion. Thus, you cant fully rely on others to obey the merging rules, as some may want to punish you eg probably the cab. You needed to be faster, either 1st or right up behind the first car and change lanes asap, not slightly ahead of the cab.

    • +8

      Unfortunately most people do see it that way - but the additional lane is there (like at many intersections) to get as much traffic as possible across at each light change. Lining up single file will lead sooner to people down the line not getting across and at busy traffic times increase congestion. If the cycle is short why should he line up at the back knowing he wont then get across? Note also no left turn - so this lane serves no other purpose. That said, if you can’t outrun a prius, maybe give in and line up.

      • +2

        That said, if you can’t outrun a prius, maybe give in and line up

        Exactly my thoughts.

  • +3

    Waiting for "disabled userXXXX"

    • -1

      It is coming, firstly I am trying to get the facts straight.

      • +7

        Nah. You are trying to get everyone to side with you.

  • +19

    Mate, you were too slow to merge behind the mazda.. just look at the gap that has opened up… the cab must have been beside you already so it is clearly your fault. While stopped at the traffic light you saw that the lane ahead was blocked…. so you either need to smoke your tires and take off to be first or take care, indicate early and look for a safe space to merge into. You did neither.

    Also, what's up with the extra slow approach to the line for… very frustrating if I was behind you!

    • +9

      He was hoping the light would go green and he could make a rolling start.

      • +5

        LOL! This… He looked like he was coming into stage at a drag meet… roll up… roll up… green… GAS GAS GAS!!

        • +1


    • +1

      agreed, if you can see the line is ending, you gotta be prepared to smoke it or get burned.

  • +1

    These are designed to help traffic flow, yes, but can ultimately impede traffic flow with sketchy merging like this.

    The only time I ever get into one of these lanes is when I know I will accelerate quickly from the lights, so as not to impede traffic flow (since I'll be merging lanes at a point that is metres in front of the next car).

    Realistically, everyone should be coming to the lights in a lane A / lane B alternating fashion, and then zip merging past the lights.

  • +10

    I was tempted to crash into this taxi not giving way at a merge when I was clearly ahead of them. I needed my car later in the day so decided I probably shouldn't

    Haha what is this? You clearly need some help.

    • +2

      That is why he has come to Australia's leading therapy website to vent his frustration.

  • +7

    I was tempted to crash into this taxi not giving way at a merge

    You have an issues if you have to think deliberately crashing into someone is a good way to make a point. There are idiots on the road and you should be trying to do everything you can to avoid a collision, regardless of who's fault it would be!

    By the way, in the video, it looks like you're the one that can't merge.

  • +10

    Drive to conditions:
    Raining and slippery road? Drive slower.

    Bright day? Drive to posted speed.

    Car not fast enough to overtake a Mazda 3? Get behind the queue.

    I understand where you might want to ease traffic congestion by getting into the additional lane, but the fact that you needed/expected other car to give way to you for you to merge in safe defeated your original condition. I would only get into the additional lane if
    - I am the first car in the additional lane and certain that I could beat the other cars
    - Or, the first car in the additional lane is a Ferrari

    • +8


      OP's shift into first was way too slow. Beaten by an auto 2.0L stop/start Mazda 3 which accelerates at a snail's pace. Prize is to join the back of the queue where it's safe.

    • +1

      "Car not fast enough to overtake a Mazda 3?" hahah BURNT

  • hahaha had the same experience last week here in Perth. drivers here cant merge properly too

  • +8

    The fact that 20 people voted that the OP is wrong shows how many idiot drivers there are. Whoever is behind has to give way

    • +3

      OP didn't use their indicator. For all the taxi driver knew was that OP wasn't going to just abruptly change lanes with no indicator. OP at fault.

      (Even from the link you posted, BOTH cars (A) that are changing lanes have their indicator on.)

      • +1

        In this both lanes end and merge like a zipper situation what are the rules for indicating?

        Most drivers seem to indicate from left lane, but not from right. Are you supposed to indicate from both?

        • I would say from the lane that is ending. In this case OP's, as they are changing from one unmarked line of traffic to another, where the other vehicles are just continuing on.

          • @pegaxs: It is in this situation because cars are parked on the left ahead. However, there’s a couple of local ones where there is no indication of which lane is ending. It’s probably just historically that ‘left lane ends’ mentality continues.

            • +2

              @Euphemistic: I got pulled over for a breath test and license check a few months ago where I was in a left lane and the right lane ended and merged into the left and the copper made note that I did not indicate.

              I told him, that I don't have to, because of the continuation of my line of traffic and I did not deviate my direction, and had I have been in the right lane that was ending, I would have signalled.

              He looked back at the road, and it was clear the left lane was a continuation as the right lane blocked by traffic island. He was happy with that, told me to have a good day and let me go.

              But, I agree, generally, 9 out of 10 times, it's the left lane that is ending.

              What the road rules say; (same for left or right)

              45 What is changing direction
              (3) A driver changes direction to the right by doing any of the following—
              (d) entering a marked lane, or a line of traffic, to the right

              It then goes on to say;

              48 Giving a right change of direction signal
              (1) Before a driver changes direction to the right, the driver must give a right change of direction signal in accordance with rule 49 for long enough to comply with subrule (2) and, if subrule (3) applies to the driver, that subrule.

              Something OP didn't do. Ergo, OP's fault for not letting the taxi driver know their intentions…

    • +5

      The cab was not behind otherwise op could have merged in. He couldn't merge in as cab was next to him. Simples!

      • If the cab was not behind the OP, how did OP get hit at the backward end of his car and not at the front/side?

    • +7

      Driving properly isn't just about who should give way and who shouldn't. It is also about driving safely.
      If it's obvious that another car isn't going to give way (whether they're wrong or right), you don't still go ahead and stick your nose out and hope for the best. It's also what I try to tell cyclists… there are lots of idiots out there on the road, but there's no point being right if you're dead.

      • +1

        Lots of correct comments, but this one from Bobbi needs to be pinned at the top so everyone reads it.

  • +3

    Firstly, its two lanes that show you can go straight from both,

    Secondly, he didnt want to be a sheep… nothing wrong in that.

    Thirdly, it seems to be a form one lane, it was not a left lane ends.. cars should zipper merge together.

    The Taxi should not be tailgating the car in front to protect their non existant right to the 'spot', he should have yielded..

    If the street didnt have the side parking, then op could have safely held the zipper merge.

    • +1

      The taxi was almost certainly tailgating as the Mazda 3 was slow to get to speed. And because of that, the taxi driver might not have seen OP's indicator (assuming that the OP was indicating).

      • -2

        Taxi should also have indicated being a form one lane.
        As it goes past the Lhs vehicle, i cant make it out..
        Even if Op didnt indicate, the Taxi had clear vision of what is next to him and should have yielded.

        • +3

          Taxi doesn't have to indicate, as they are not changing "lines of traffic". However, OP did have to indicate, and didn't.

          • @pegaxs: My understanding is if there's no crossing of dotted lines then there's no requirement to indicate. Whoever is in front has right of way.

            • +2

              @roffnar: Did you just not look at any of the examples provided? In every example (from a government website or article) it shows the vehicle changing line of traffic as indicating.

              The road rules even say the same thing. It's literally in the definition of the applicable road rules that if you are changing line of traffic, you must indicate.

              Added to that is that there is no "right of way" in Australian Road Rules, only the obligation to give way.

  • +5

    just ur standard taxi driver being a *unt

    or did you have your indicator on? if not then your problem

  • +4

    The taxi driver was being like a fair percentage of road users, he/she saw the opportunity as you had the car blocking you, so took advantage of the situation. You as a driver did the right thing by driving defensively and averting an unnecessary collision. Qld drivers do seem to have a more cavalier attitude to driving compared to what we see in Northern NSW. We lived in Brisbane and the Gold Coast 1988 to 2009 so are not favouring one state over another.

    The bit about you being tempted to crash into the taxi and you didn't for selfish reasons, is a bit concerning, you need to relax man and accept that you can't make people drive as they should or how you want them to. A calm but alert driver is da best.


    Not exactly the same situation, but should have crashed like this. That'll show em.

    • +4

      Dashcam driver isn't technically wrong, but he's definitely a d*ck.

      • +1

        Yes, it is a badly designed road. No harm in giving way.

        • The DC driver may not have to pay for the damage, but it's a huge inconvenience to have the car off the road while it's getting fixed.

  • We can't see the cab position from the dashcam. I think OP noticed the parked car and reacted to it too late/slow. If there is minimal gap between the black/grey car and the cab just after the light, OP should have just slowed down a bit. If there is enough gap then just squeezed in before the cab can accelerate further.

  • +1

    With life being the way it is what's legal and allowed is not always what's best. This is a great example of this. Although OPs actions were legally in the right. The decisions made were in my opinion not in the best interest of easing congestions and providing safety in the situation. I'm gonna look at the situation as if OP had the best interest of both the congestion of the road and the safety of both him and those around him as this should be the priority when driving.

    Firstly we need to look at the purpose of the left lane in this scenario. To me it looks like a second lane was there likely for the purpose of preventing traffic from the light from spilling onto the intersection OP drove through at the start.

    This does not seem to be applicable to the situation as according to the evidence there is only a few cars. Based on this going in the left lane would likely cause more congestion due to the post lights merge. when this inevitable merge takes place, all the cars will have to slow down in order to let OP in. Based on this I believe the decision to take the left lane was the worse one.

    The situation that then arises is this is only the right decision assuming OP knew he would have to merge after the lights, if they did not know this fact then this analysis is not applicable as how can one prepare for a situation they are not aware is coming.

    Now, if that is the case we then look at the events that take place after the lights. From the video it is hard to tell if OP was unaware his lane was coming to an end or if he has just taken offensive driving lessons. If he was aware of the lane ending he should have been attempting to merge from much earlier which would generally lead him slowing slight and likely getting behind the taxi and in a worst case scenario behind all the other cars. This leads to the only conclusion I can come to;

    OP driving home exhausted from a big night/early morning/long day is just cruising smashing out some sweet tunes, sees the left lane is nice and open and instinctively goes to it i mean look at all that free space it looks perfect. OP being nice and fuel efficient doesn't want to break hard so instead coasts to stop. lights turn green, oh baby IT IS TIME, his eyes spark and electric blue as he harnesses Sonic "Gotta go fast!" he (profanity) his take off losing out to the Mazda dratz but it ain't over yet nothing will stop him from beating that taxi, eyes forward mind racing until suddenly WAIT that car in front is completely stationery, thinking his speed was too powerful for the taxi he starts to change lane only to realise…. WHAAAAT the taxi was also making pace it somehow kept up with him, the world slows down he's fast, boy you bet he's fast but without the open road the only option is hit the that suddenly stopped in front, hit the speedy taxi or stop. the idea of stopping makes him sick, disgusted even. how dare the taxi not give way it was his birthright, as told by the sacred texts. his exhaustion has faded replaced with a racing heart and a head full of fury, and a foot full of brakes. He reluctantly slides in third the other cars still way back tasting the unsettled dust left by the three speedsters. the words of his father resonates in his head "if you're not first, you're last".

  • You need to be taken off the road.
    Clearly you were trying to force your way into the other car.
    How can you get on this forum and cry the victim?
    You then aggressively pursued the driver and illegally sounded your horn.
    Are you a "basher" or something? Does the world owe you?
    Hand your licence in.

  • I always found taxis and Couriers to push on whenever possible in Brisbane. For many years, Brisbane itself had a great reputation for letting people in as long as they used their indicators. However, right now, I have noticed a change on the roads. It's every person for themselves.

  • +2

    Doesn't matter if OP was trying to cut in front of 5 cars, cabbie should still have yielded (wouldn't have impeded traffic flow by too much but would mean cabbie 'lost' the race). It isn't the cabbie's place to 'teach OP a lesson' and honestly just seems like he was being an aggro driver. I think OP is fine to use the left lane (that's what it's there for) but looks like he wasn't quick enough from the line and definitely should've used indicators. Without using indicators it might seem to the cabbie that OP is trying to 'muscle' his way in (or not trying to actively change lanes in which case cabbie can be a bit of a jerk and just pretend like the car isn't intending to merge and therefore not open up a space for him). If OP had put on his indicators, maybe cab might have given way, or if he kept on tailgating the Mazda, OP would be able to tell he's definitely not giving way and then could've easily slid behind the cab (generally if car isn't opening up a space when you are indicating then time to pull back - especially when there's not much road left - but easier said than done.) Without indicators, both cars are playing a game of chicken as mentioned earlier - cabbie feels like he doesn't need to make space even if a more considerate driver might drive defensively and leave some room for OP to merge where the road obviously ends unless you're parking and meanwhile OP doesn't know 100% if cabbie will yield (putting blinkers on would help to get the intention of both drivers) - so both keep barreling on and ultimately slow things down for everyone behind them.

    As a side note I really dislike these types of roads. I've seen roads that go from 1 lane to 2 lanes at traffic lights, then back to 1 lane after the lights. No one queues up in one lane and cars normally go to both lanes then generally zipper merge fine after the lights. This is at a more residential setting and most cars get it and it's fine. In the city, these type of lanes that suddenly end in parking on one side always seem to catch unfamiliar drivers off guard and just seem to cause slowdowns when the left car suddenly needs to change lanes and slows down (or suddenly cuts across and causes everyone on the right to slow down) while meanwhile cars on the right seem to be more unwilling to let cars on the left in because they are 'jumping the queue.' Obviously it saves space but it doesn't make me like these types of roads anyway more.

  • Nothing a dirty big bull bar can't fix. When I'm coming through I'm coming through

  • +2

    Dashcam driver hesitates. Bad point

    Dashcam driver blows the horn. Illegal and another bad point

    Dashcam driver got +600 views already. Well done, excellent promotional tool this OzBargain is!

  • Two lanes into one, whoever is in front has right of way. No need to indicate. Source; driving instructor for 10 years.

    • +1

      This is the correct answer. People are getting confused because they're looking at rules for lane changes. This is not a lane change.

    • +2

      Then you are not a very good driving instructor and really should consider a career change.

      It’s literally in the road rules that if you are changing lines of traffic, you must give a change of direction indication. Of all people, I shouldn’t have to link to this, because you should be able to tell me the road rule that this falls under.

      The example in the road rules as well as in the drivers handbook for this exact situation quite clearly shows the vehicle that is changing line of traffic as indicating.

      Source; Australian Road Rules. Learner drivers handbooks.

      And to think that you are teaching other people how to drive. That scares me. (The fact that you even used the phrase “right of way” as a driving instructor…)

      • +1

        He does have right of way though. Just because there's no indicator doesn't mean they automatically lose right of way. Are they being a (insert profanity)? Yes. But even then, technically OP still does have "right of way" regardless of whether they indicated.

        The fact of the matter is that OP is at the front regardless and people behind should be able to clearly see that and give way as a result.

        The taxi driver is at fault for either deliberately not letting OP merge due to this fact, or that the taxi driver did not read the situation properly. I really like to think that OP is getting what he deserves for driving like that, but if you look at facts, in an ideal world, the taxi driver should be putting his ego aside and letting him through to avoid easily preventable accidents.

        OP is also at fault for not indicating and driving in such a way it causes a reaction out of other drivers. Especially as it looks like he's trying to cut people off.

        • +2

          OP does not have "right of way". There is no "right of way" in the Australian Road Rules.

          The taxi driver has the "obligation to give way." This obligation only extends once the taxi driver is aware of OP's intention to merge. Just moving your car across is not "indicating" (unless it's a BMW??)

          It is also erroneous to inform people that they don't need to use their indicator in this situation. A good driving instructor of "10 years" would know this.

          But like you said, and I maintain from my first post, it's more of a case of two idiots playing chicken that probably could have resolved itself normally if OP wasn't a queue jumping, drag racing traffic bully and the taxi driver just let them in. Two idiots trying to teach each other a lesson.

          And I am sure that had it been the taxi driver here complaining about OP trying to merge on them without and indicator, we would all be yelling at the other car for merging without indicator and driving like a douche.

        • +1

          Just because there's no indicator doesn't mean they automatically lose right of way

          How about if the dashcam vehicle or any other with no indication does so planning to stop, to park behind lined cars?

          How about if the vehicle is heading into its own driveway?

          A visual indicator DOES help a lot.
          Guessing when driving is not a good habit.

  • They can't park either in QLD

  • Didn’t see Merge Lane 1, so I assume after the intersection there are two lanes and DC cars lane is blocked which means you should give way to the cab

  • +1

    Haven't seen the rule about not needing to indicate in this situation, even if you have right of way. Some people will "punish" you for not indicating.

  • +1

    Sorry to say but
    OP is not in the enough speed to merge as there was enough gap to merge after the first car or OP should have in the first place if safe to do so;

    If the following car has slowdown to give way to OP, then it’s obvious the OP has to stop and move right;

    I didn’t hear any indicator sound ;

    If the cab supposed to be police car, OP would have received infringement for dangerous driving.

  • +2

    If there'd been an accident, the cab driver would have been at fault. Neither lane ended, meaning that whomever is furthest up has right of way. The fact that the cab was at no stage ever in your field of view (after moving off from the lights) combined with the amount of time after you braked for the vehicle to come into frame demonstrates that the cab was required to give way to you.

    That being said… Welcome to Brisbane. People drive like that all the time and unless you want to constantly be in accidents, you need to prepare for it.

  • Grabs popcorn

  • +4

    Found it weird there were no indicator sounds. Really would have expected the use of indicators in this scenario.

    OP also seems to have a bad case of road rage.

    OP r u ok? :/

    • You think a quick honk is 'bad case of road rage'?

      • +3

        Dude stated he wanted to crash into the Taxi. If that isn't road rage. I don't know what is.

        • Ah I didn't catch that the first time around

  • +5

    Hmm, I don't think you are in the wrong but you are certainly not without blame.

    It appears that you take off from that left lane fairly conservatively but then you start accelerating fairly hard. I am guessing this sudden burst of acceleration is a result of you realising that the taxi is gassing it up too and you want to beat them to the merge. You then realise you can't make it and brake and because all of this you have forgotten to indicate. If you had a faster car you might have bet him but all of sudden this is a pretty wild traffic manoeuvre, then to contemplate ramming the taxi off the road for this act of domination against you seems a bit of a over reaction.

    This little game of chicken at these types of roads amuse me to no end. I am happy to let the left lanes merge if they are driving sanely but as soon as I see someone try to bully into the traffic by overtaking cars aggressively and push into the merge I make it has hard as possible for them to merge in but only to the extent that aren't driven off the road. You know make them sweat a little bit and hopefully reassess their behaviour. But with this post maybe people don't self-reflect and just blame others for their pig headed driving

  • -2

    Major fault here from OP , You needed to indicate and indicate early. This was not two lanes merging but one ending so to move to another lane you must indicate.

    If the lane had a gradual merge then no requirement to indicate however is always safer if you do anyway.

  • +5

    If your going to pull a move like that you better boot it at the lights, otherwise get to the back of the (profanity) queue.

    • +2

      Exactly, don't half arse it.

  • +2

    You got pwned!

  • +1

    Had plenty of these situations. OP trying to cut the queue. Either speed past car 1(mazda) or you wait.

    Taxi knew what you were doing and most likely u can see it if you turn your head or check your mirrors that taxi doesn't like queue cutters.

  • +2

    Why didn't OP just floor their car and chop the Mazda 3? 99% of cars are slow at lights and won't race.

    • +2

      It don't matter if you win by an inch or a mile. Winning's winning.

  • If you want to change lane by crossing broken white lines, you have to yield, even to bully boy taxi drivers

  • +3

    Get in queue and keep your temper down.

  • +1

    I'm a Sydneysider so I would have tailgated him while flashing my lights for a solid minute.

    It wasn't left lane ends and you didn't have to cross lines from what I can see so I believe you had right of way. At a zipper merge the car in front has right of way, in NSW at least.

  • +4

    No car crash is worth it in proving who's right or wrong.

  • +1

    lol what a joke, you're the muppet who didnt speed up enough to merge

    You're at fault and if you crashed into him it would be your fault as well.

    • +1

      And you're the muppet that doesn't seem to understand that there was no merge here.

      Both lanes, the right and the left, ENDED. There was no zipper, there was no sign indicating a lane ending, there was literally nothing except the dashed line signifying the lanes just stopped.

      When that happens, the car who's nose is further up has the right of way. The tax is in the wrong.

      • mate you can see where the lane ends. If you're in the left lane you're supposed to overtake all the cars in the right so this doesnt happen

        If not stay in the right lane and forget about getting ahead. This is common sense but doesn't seem to run through most people's heads.

  • -1

    Out of curiosity, are you an Asian?

  • +3

    Is that your first time driving in West End? No one uses that left lane, because they know that they will eventually have to merge. I am not surprised that the taxi did that. I would have let you in, but also have flipped you off. There was a reason why everyone was on the right lane.

  • +2

    understandably people might have their reasons for blaming OP but legally the cab is entirely in the wrong.

    • all lanes should be used
    • car in front has right of way when a lane merges. (in this case, the taxi must yield)

    a common misconception people have is that they are under the impression they own the lane because "they were there first" and it's understandable why it might be argued that way morally, ethically, out of courtesy etc. but someone's ego and how people feel isn't the law.

  • A wise man once said "it doesn't matter if you win by an inch, or a mile - winning IS winning"

    In your case, he was wrong, but the taxi driver was also being a dick IMO. However, I agree with Logical - you saw the lane ending so you should have smoked it.

    This is why I drive against ozb regulations in a 500hp car that chews fuel and money… theres nobody next to me when I get to a merge like that.

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