Following on from last week's post : there is no excuse, ever, for using your brakes in a line of steady-flowing traffic. Being a nervous Nellie and tapping your brakes, even for a moment, causes your brake lights to come on, causing the person behind you to think you're slowing down, meaning they're likely to apply their brakes too. And so on back down the line until, on a motorway, about a mile behind you the traffic will come to a complete stop and your nervous driving has caused a phantom traffic jam for no reason.
The answer to this is simple : take your foot off the accelerator. The car will slow down - trust me. It doesn't matter if you're driving a manual or an automatic - once you take your foot off that pedal, the car will slow down. Not as much as it does with the brakes, but enough, in normal traffic, to accommodate the slight variations in speed and following distances that you get on motorways and main roads.
Of course the reason this happens, for the most part, is because (a)people are just not taught to drive properly any more and (b)people spend so much time texting, using their phone or otherwise being distracted whilst in their mobile entertainment complexes that when they finally do look out the window, they realise they're a bit too close to the person in front.
So I'm with Jeremy Clarkson on this one - people who brake in steady flowing traffic need to be taken outside and shot.