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Detroit Driving Tips


1. First, you must learn to pronounce the city name. It's Di-troit. NOT DEE-troit. If you pronounce it DEE-Troit then we will assume you are from Toledo.

2. Forget the traffic rules you learned elsewhere. Detroit has its own version of traffic rules... Hold on and pray.

3. The morning rush hour is from 6:00am to 10:00am. The evening rush hour is from 3:00pm to 7:00pm. Friday's rush hour starts Thursday morning. Weekends are open game.

4. If you actually stop at a yellow light, you will be rear-ended, cussed out and possibly shot. If you're first off the starting line when the light turns green, count to five before going. This will avoid getting in the way of cross-traffic who just ran their yellow light to keep from getting shot.

5. Schoenherr can only be properly pronounced by a native of the Detroit metro area. That goes for Gratiot too. Schoenherr is pronounced SHAY NER. Gratiot is pronounced, GRASH IT.

6. Construction and renovation on I-94, I-96, I-75, I-275, I-375, The Lodge and Southfield freeways are a way of life. Just deal with it. There are two seasons in Detroit; winter and construction.

7. If someone actually has their turn signal on, it is probably a factory defect or they are from out of town.

8. All old men with white hair wearing a hat have total right-of-way.

9. The minimum acceptable speed on I-696 is 85 regardless of the posted speeds. Anything less is considered downright sissy. Don't even think of allowing more than one car length between cars.

10. That attractive wrought iron on the windows and doors in Detroit is not ornamental. DO NOT get out of your car.

11. Never stare at the driver of the car with the bumper sticker that says "Keep honking, I'm reloading."

12. If you are in the left lane, and only going 70 in a 60 mph zone, people are not waving because they are so friendly in Detroit. I would suggest you duck.

13. I-275 / I-696 is our daily version of NASCAR.

14. It's not M-10, it's "The Lodge".

15. That's not a lake, it's a pothole.

16. If someone tells you it's on Outer Drive, you better have a map.

17. The left turn is simple. If you want to turn left, go a 1/4 of a mile past your turn, get to the left, then make a left, then make a right. Now you have gone left.

Side notes:

6 mile turns into McNichols
7 mile turns into Moross
8 mile turns into Baseline and Vernier at opposite ends
15 mile turns into Maple.
16 mile turns into Big Beaver and Metro Parkway, then Quarton, somewhere along the way.
17 mile turns into Wattles
18 mile turns into Long Lake
19 mile turns into Square Lake
20 mile turns into Hall Road and then Highland Rd., before it becomes M-59 (I don't know anyone that calls it 20 mile road)
Main street starts as "Main Street" and turns into Livernois for no apparent reason.
If someone tells you to take "75 South to Detroit" make sure you merge onto 375 or you'll end up in Toledo. (Why is 375 not on a sign? Not on the one going east on I94)


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