BOISE - It's a controversial maneuver on the road that drivers either love, hate or have never heard of.

The zipper merge is designed to keep the flow of traffic moving steadily but it's only effective if everybody is on board.

"I don't think anybody knows about it, at least if they do they are afraid to do it because they are going to look like the lunch-line bully or something," said Boise resident Patricia Rich.

Rich practices the zipper merge but says it’s usually followed by a honk or a dirty look from another driver.

"Because no one else is doing it, I know that I kind of have this look of being a bully or you know that kid that cuts the lunch line," said Rich.

To other driver's it may look like Rich is "cutting" or even being a jerk who should have merged several miles back, but she's actually doing it the right way.

For those that aren't familiar with the move, the zipper merge calls for drivers ahead of a lane-closure to remain in that lane until the merging point, then take turns moving into the continuing lane, one-by-one, coming together like the teeth of a zipper.

"The zipper technique is a great idea, being where cars from each lane take turns merging, that's great and can actually be very efficient," said Idaho State Police Corporal J.D. Law.

Law says while the move is encouraged, it is still the responsibility of the driver whose lane is ending to merge, which means it’s also their responsibility to yield if traffic in the continuing lane won't budge.

"Plan those merges in advance, make sure you are paying attention to your speed and following distance," said Law.

So for the zipper merge to work, it’s going to take a little bit of cooperation from everyone on the road.

"The more people hear about it, the easier it is going to be for all of us," said Rich.