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Old 12-16-2009, 07:16 PM   #1 (permalink)
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No left turns rule (UPS does it. Is it a useful fuel saving tactic?)

A while back I heard UPS (the brown truck) instilled a no left turn rule in order to save fuel consumption and time. This sounds like an interesting thing to experiment with.

Has anyone else done it? If so, did it help? How about some opinions?

I've been mapping routes that skips taking left turns on Google Maps in order to see calculated results. I don't see any difference...

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Old 12-16-2009, 07:40 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Pontiac -

Google and Yahoo maps are good for distance, but I don't think they take into account left turn lights versus right turn "stop, look, and go"s (or do they, ).

I have developed my own routes from experience. Because I am a commuter, I spend a lot of time on the same roads every day. As a result, I have optimized my route. Los Angeles is basically a giant grid of roads. This often gives me "parallel roadway" options that I can take advantage of.

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Old 12-16-2009, 07:47 PM   #3 (permalink)
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no left turn could possibly be a time saver... thus saving fuel.
the bottom line is: how long do you sit at an intersection with your blinker on waiting to turn left, but the oncoming traffic doesn't have an opening... then you sit through another red light. and burn more gas.
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Old 12-16-2009, 08:30 PM   #4 (permalink)
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...problem with SOME left-turn implementations is that often they're "leading (before oncoming traffic)" or "lingering (after oncoming traffic)" which can make you SIT until the very last moment before even getting the 'chance' to turn...at least here in both Marana, AZ and Tucson, AZ.

...and, within the SAME locale, they might be EITHER leading or lingering...dumb...no consistancy at ALL?!?!?
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Old 12-16-2009, 09:01 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Makes sense, assuming you are never backtracking.
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Old 12-16-2009, 09:20 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I've always planned routes around town to think about the number of left turns. At left turns you normally have to sit with the engine running waiting for an opening and then flooring it. At right turns you (most of the time) EOC down to the stop (or close to stop) and then start the car and proceed right. You normally don't have to floor it and can use the most efficient acceleration for your vehicle.
But again it is when you know the road you know where you can make left turns with little trouble or where you can do the most efficient EOC because you know the light timing.
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Old 12-16-2009, 09:36 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I find this highly unlikely, actually.

It's completely impractical to expect a bunch of untrained delivery drivers to stop making left turns, and especially to the UPS installation on the Carlisle Pike in Mechanicsburg, which I'm particularly familiar with. (I used to be a security guard there when it was still Overnite Transport.)

In essence, while they may have told drivers to stop making left turns, drivers likely thumbed their nose at the "rule" and continue to operate within the normal capacity of the roads they're using.
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Old 12-16-2009, 10:21 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christ View Post
I find this highly unlikely, actually.

It's completely impractical to expect a bunch of untrained delivery drivers to stop making left turns, and especially to the UPS installation on the Carlisle Pike in Mechanicsburg, which I'm particularly familiar with. (I used to be a security guard there when it was still Overnite Transport.)

In essence, while they may have told drivers to stop making left turns, drivers likely thumbed their nose at the "rule" and continue to operate within the normal capacity of the roads they're using.
But as a whole, do you think it saves "iron"?

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Old 12-16-2009, 10:27 PM   #9 (permalink)
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As with any hypermiling technique, when applied properly, it would save no more fuel than simply using the intersection's traffic pattern to your advantage, timing the intersection for the left turn, as you would for straight travel, so you can minimize stop and go.

For the average driver, who is reactive, as opposed to hypermilers, who strive to be proactive, minimizing left turns can, and probably does save fuel. Unfortunately, it takes planning, which most do not and will not do. Planning takes time, and people don't realize that you must invest in order to save.
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Old 12-16-2009, 10:30 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christ View Post
As with any hypermiling technique, when applied properly, it would save no more fuel than simply using the intersection's traffic pattern to your advantage, timing the intersection for the left turn, as you would for straight travel, so you can minimize stop and go.
I don't know if you can truly "hardcore" hypermile in traffic. I have always wanted a video of someone effectively hypermiling in 5 o'clock traffic.

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