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Why must traffic accidents be required before signs are posted indicating correct traffic movement at intersections? (Specifically, U-Turn vs. right turn with no signals) Isn’t this being reactive instead if proactive?

Ken Little

To maintain consistency throughout the state, standard signage is used along North Carolina routes and at intersections, said Jessi Leonard, N.C. Division of Transportation Division 3 traffic engineer

“However, if concerns arise and it is determined that a location needs more restriction or notification than we would typically use, we take the necessary steps to address those needs,” Leonard said.

Regarding the specific question about the U-Turn Yield to Right Turn Signs, “These are only used at signalized locations since this law only applies when the left turn/U turn receives a green arrow at the same time that the right on the opposing road receives a green arrow,” Leonard said.

To access the N.C. DMV’s Driver Handbook, go to https://www.ncdot.gov/download/dmv/handbooks_ncdl_english.pdf.

The section “Special Driving Situations” in Chapter 4 – Your Driving” (Page 54-55), provides input on who has right of way at unsignalized locations.

The information is specifically located in the bullets on page 55, which provides verification that vehicles already at the intersection have the right of way.

“Meaning that at an unsignalized intersection, if there is traffic stacked for both the left/U turn and the right and the right turn vehicles was present first, once the right turn vehicle makes their movement, the U turn/left turn has the right of way since they would have been present at the intersection before the next vehicle approaching to turn right,” Leonard said.


User-contributed question by:
Teresa Taylor

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