If you've ever driven in the Maine Mall area of South Portland, there are plenty of traffic pitfalls and quirks that can test your patience. But there's one particular intersection and stretch of road where traffic issues shouldn't be a pressing problem if drivers knew how to read signs and operate their vehicle properly. Sure, that may sound harsh, but if you travel this route on a daily basis, you're pretty much guaranteed to run into some mind-numbing behavior consistently. So what seems to be the problem? Let us explain.

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The first issue pops up with this intersection of Payne Road and the on-ramp for the Maine Turnpike Approach. People instinctively want to slow down and merge here. Even worse, many drivers decide to come to a complete stop as well. Both driving moves are errors. There's no sign indicating a merge or stop, because this right hand turn has its own lane. As the on-ramp continues, you'll then merge with the other lane.

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The second stretch of road that causes problems is the on-ramp funneling into the Maine Turnpike Approach. Here, you'll find a yield sign. What you'll also find is that a ton of drivers don't seem to understand that a yield sign is not the same as a merge sign.

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Because the on-ramp from Payne Road leads almost directly to the on-ramp for I-295, drivers often time make a beeline and stay the course. But the yield sign means you should be slowing or stopping for vehicles on the Maine Turnpike Approach, not the other way around. This is a consistent area of road rage amongst motorists.

Be kind and smart on the roads, but also understand when to stop, start, or yield. It'll make everyone a lot happier.


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