Most people have heard how the country changed from driving on the left side to the right. But few people know why this is even a debate amongst drivers.
As we all know, America drives on the right side of the road, but that has a history of political meaning and is still relevant today. Here’s what I’m going to dig up about why the United States prefers driving on the right side of the road!
Why Does America Drive on The Right?
1. Colonial America Predominated Right-Hand Travel
In colonial days, driving on the right side of the road was the benchmark, which is why it is still the norm in America today.
Furthermore, this was because Conestoga wagons, which had a front-facing seat, were standard in Colonial America, and horses were employed to pull the carriage.
In fact, these wagons were such a popular form of transportation that products were even moved around in them.
As a result, the driver’s side of the wagon is positioned on the right because horses and carriages initially used it.
2. Cast Off All Remaining Links From British Colonial
In 1776, the United States formally proclaimed its independence from Great Britain.
Due to this fact, Americans believed they shouldn’t be obliged to pay taxes imposed by the England Parliament.
Because of this, the United States desired independence from the British and rebelled against the British territories.
By all means, after gaining independence from England, America decided to drive on its right to cast off all remaining links with them!
3. Major Impetus For Right-Hand Driving In The United States
During the 18th and 19th centuries, a Conestoga wagon was used in the eastern United States and Canada.
For that reason, historian M. G. Lay concluded that the Conestoga wagon served as a primary stimulus for right-hand driving in the United States.
Afterward, the primary force for right-hand driving in the United States was the need to preserve forward momentum common in rural areas.
Under those circumstances, Americans are greatly influenced by the Conestoga wagon that allows them to maintain speed!
4. No Roundabouts In The United States
Roundabouts are a great way to reduce the number of accidents on the road.
However, they are not allowed in America because they are too confusing for most drivers and can cause chaos on our roads if everyone starts going around at once trying to get out simultaneously.
Therefore, the United States has a right-of-way system like all other countries. In other words, you must yield to cars from the right side of the highway.
Overall, America does not have roundabouts or rotaries, so they drive on the right side and yield to cars from the left!
5. The U.S. Is More Car-Dependent
In 2010, there were 2.6 million vehicles on U.S. roads, compared with 1.9 million in the rest of the world combined.
In addition to a higher population density than other countries, the United States also drives more miles per capita than any other country.
As an effect, this high driving rate concludes that more Americans are exposed to traffic accidents, which can lead to injuries and deaths.
Because of that, America is more car-dependent, so it makes sense that most drivers came from the U.S. and influenced right-side driving globally!
6. Right Side Of The Road Is For Men
Men are most drivers in America prefer to use their right hand as they drive.
In fact, if you look at the statistics, men make up 51.52 percent of drivers, compared to women’s 48.48 percent.
As well as that, alpha males tend to be more aggressive and dominant, which makes them more likely to be bold while driving.
In a state where males are the majority of drivers, it is no surprise that America believes that the right side of the road belongs to men!
7. For Safety
In America, it is believed to drive on the right side of the road because there are no remote or other barriers in this direction.
Furthermore, this allows drivers to see other cars coming from behind them, making it easier for them to avoid an accident.
Additionally, a road that is traveled more frequently is more likely to be on the right side. This is due to the possibility that it was built to facilitate more cars going through.
Above all, driving on the right side in the U.S. is a safer and more effective technique, as it eliminates the threat of oncoming traffic from the sides or the rear!
8. Controls Both Sides Of Vehicle
Driving on the right side of the road has been an ingrained habit in American culture since its early days.
First, it makes sense because of how our bodies are designed. The left side of our body is responsible for movement, while the right is responsible for stability and balance.
Secondly, it also allows drivers to see more quickly when driving at night or in bad weather conditions.
Lastly, it reduces congestion by providing more room for passing other cars and turning around at intersections!
9. 90% Of The People On The Planet Are Right-Handed
Countries like America and China switched to driving on the right side to accommodate their populations’ right-handedness better.
Whereas the ratio varies globally, in Western nations, 85% and 90% of people are right-handed, while 10% and 15% are left-handed.
Because of that, they become more proficient with their dominant hand, which is usually their right hand, due to its use for writing from an early age.
As a result, as the majority of human beings are right-handed, the USA decided to adapt to driving on the right-hand side of the car!
To know more, you can also read our posts on why England drives on the left, why Japan drives on the left, and why your driveway is sinking.
It’s hard to explain that the rest of the world drives on a different side of the road and expects anyone to believe it.
As demonstrated, America drives on the right because of Great Britain’s fundamental influences and the American Colonial’s impact.
Overall, both sides have pros and cons, and getting behind the wheel on either side is perfectly legal!