Two wrongs don’t make a right, but three rights make a left. Or something.
Most of us would like to spend less time driving around the city and every single one of us would like to spend less money doing so.
The question is how.
The answer is an unexpected one. You could even say it’s straight out of left field.
According to UPS, the right way to save time and fuel is by never turning into oncoming traffic.
In countries that drive on the right, that means left turns are out. For those who drive on the left, it means no more right turns, Clyde.
So when three right turns are potentially needed to go left, how does this theory work?
As you can see in the below video from GeoBeats News, waiting and turning into oncoming traffic creates three main issues. These are:
- increasing the time spent getting to the destination
- increasing fuel consumption while sitting idle
- increasing the chances of an accident en route
Negating these means a vehicle can travel a little further yet still operate more efficiently, and so UPS uses a system known as vehicle routing to give drivers optimum routes between stops – routes that may not be the shortest but will have as few turns into oncoming traffic as possible.
For a company with so many vehicles, this adds up to a lot of savings.
Thanks to their routing policy, UPS claim to have 1,100 fewer trucks on the road, travel 28.5m miles less, and to use 10m fewer gallons of fuel, emit 20,000 tons less carbon dioxide, and deliver 350,000 more packages every year.
So with such figures, why aren’t we all doing it?
For starters, the time and fuel-saving benefits for you and your single car won’t be quite as noticeable – although they will certainly be present.
It’s easy to ignore the advice to never turn into oncoming traffic when the upside to the individual is harder to see, but the impact on both the environment and congestion would be huge if everybody started to do it.
Perhaps it’s time for town planners to begin considering this when redesigning their road systems?
You can do your bit by rerouting yourself, starting today – one immediate upside will be reducing your chances of having an accident, which is always a great thing.