Mind Your Honking Manners

A honk is a car’s way of talking. And just like a voice, there’s some we don’t mind hearing and ones who just wish would shut up. Mind your honking manners with these guidelines on what to do — and not to do — in different situations.

A CAR FADES INTO YOUR LANE, AT RISK OF SIDESWIPING YOU:
DON’T excessively honk your horn and make an angry gesture. You’ll only irritate the other driver and you could both lose focus on the road.
DO honk enough to alert the drifting driver.

THE LIGHT TURNS GREEN, BUT THE FIRST CAR DOESN’T MOVE:
DON’T immediately start hitting the horn. You may not be able to see what is ahead of the driver and can’t know whether there is something impeding them from moving forward.
DO wait a few seconds before honking to signal the driver that the light has turned.

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A PEDESTRIAN WALKS INTO A DANGEROUS TRAFFIC SITUATION:
DON’T hold your hand on the horn for an extended period of time. A honk sounds a lot louder to anyone standing outside of your car, and it could distract other drivers.
DO give a quick honk to alert the pedestrian of an oncoming car.

STUCK IN BUMPER TO BUMPER TRAFFIC OR NOT MOVING FAST ENOUGH
DON’T lay on the horn to vent your frustration. A traffic jam is already unbearable for everyone involved. Honking isn’t going to make it go any faster.
DO chill for a second. Be patient. Getting frustrated will only make you lose focus and possibly make poor decisions.

SEEING YOUR COWORKER, BFF OR ANYONE ELSE YOU WANT TO SAY “HEY” TO:
DON’T honk to catch their attention and say hello. You confuse other drivers who may think there is an issue on the road or that you’re honking at them.
DO keep your focus on the road and call or text them when you are out of your car.

Remember, honking should be used to alert and communicate with other drivers to make the road a safer place. No matter how annoying your drive or day is, using your horn as a means to vent your frustration will only increase the likelihood of an accident occurring.