Left turn loonies

I can probably expand on this more, but I just wanted to quickly vent my rage at people who cut me off at red lights. You know the type. They're the ones who have already practically made their left turn before the light turns green. Then as soon is does, it's zoom-zoom! All traffic making a left turn must yield the right-of-way to ALL oncoming traffic, unless there is a dedicated traffic signal allowing the left turn traffic to go first.

More to come...

UPDATE: I promise to write more when I had time. Who knew it was going to take me several days? Anyway, the reason I wrote the above entry was because I had just been cut off by someone doing this very maneuver and without a turn signal. Anyone who cuts a quick left can be slightly forgiven for having the courtesy of giving me a turn signal to work with. Despite the turn signal, I don't like being cut off by someone in a hurry who pulls the right of way right out from under me. Nobody likes a cutter.

I can see where some drivers think that all left turning traffic gets to go first because some traffic lights are designed to move the left turning traffic through the intersection while all or most of the other traffic is stopped. These signals tend to ease traffic congestion even though it may take longer for the lights to cycle than if it were a traditional traffic light. Despite these signals, left turning traffic does not have the right of way EVER. If memory serves from when I was preparing for my learner's permit test, all left turning traffic must yield the right of way until it is SAFE to go. Also meaning NOT when you feel like you've waited long enough to turn.

Here's what the state Driver's Manual says: "When making any left turn, you must first yield the right-of-way to any: 1. Oncoming vehicle; 2. Vehicle already in the intersection; 3. Pedestrians or bicyclists crossing your intended path of travel." Yes, drivers must yield even for lowly pedestrians and cyclists in their path. Even though I'm sure the driver who is in a hurry will ask "Doesn't he know I have to get to Dunkin's before work or my whole day is ruined?"

My stock answer to anyone in a hurry to get somewhere on time: You should have left earlier.


Post a Comment