California right-of-way laws provide clear guidance regarding when drivers are permitted to go and when they should yield to others. These rules promote traffic safety and help keep traffic flowing smoothly.
However, even when a driver has the right of way, motorists must remain alert and cautious to avoid accidents. Some of the most important right-of-way laws in California include the following:
Motorists must yield the right of way to pedestrians, which includes people on foot, roller skates, skateboards or wheelchairs. Drivers are expected to drive carefully in areas where pedestrians are present. Drivers must obey right-of-way rules pertaining to pedestrians, including:
Additional right-of-way rules apply when approaching crosswalks, such as:
When two vehicles reach an intersection at the same time, the vehicle on the right has the right of way and should be allowed to go first. However, there are exceptions, including:
A three-way intersection exists when one road ends at another and creates a “T” shape. Motorists traveling on the road that has a stop sign must remain stopped until all vehicles have passed through the intersection. If no sign is present, vehicles on the through road have the right of way, and motorists traveling on the road that ends must stop.
If an intersection has working traffic signals or signs that indicate the right of way, these signals or signs must be obeyed. Here is how the right of way works with signs and signals:
If a motorist intends to make a left-hand turn at an intersection, he or she should:
A roundabout is a special intersection where traffic moves in a circle in a counter-clockwise direction. Vehicles entering the roundabout must yield to motorists and bicyclists who are already in the roundabout.
When in the circle, do not stop to allow other motorists into the roundabout, because doing so can increase the possibility of causing an accident. Stop in the roundabout only if another motorist, bicyclist or pedestrian is causing a potential traffic hazard. When exiting a roundabout, yield to pedestrians and bicyclists.
California is home to mountainous roads that require additional caution. California’s right-of-way rules dictate that if two vehicles are on a steep road where neither vehicle can pass, the downhill-facing vehicle must yield the right of way to the uphill-facing vehicle. The downhill-facing vehicle may have to back up to allow room for the other vehicle.
Violating right-of-way laws can lead to car accidents and pedestrian accidents. Right-of-way laws can be complex, and it can be difficult to determine who had the right of way when an accident happened. If you were injured in a right-of-way accident, contact the trusted car accident lawyers in our Sacramento office for help. Our legal team can evaluate your accident and review your legal options with you.
At the Arnold Law Firm, we charge no upfront fees, and we offer a free consultation. There is no obligation on your part, so there is no risk talking with us about your case. Contact us today to find out what we can do for you.
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