Monday, September 1, 2014

Right Turns on Red

Happy Labor Day 2014!  Hopefully you are enjoying your Labor Day holiday with something that you like to do.

When you exit Interstate 275 at any one of the exits, most of them are controlled by traffic signals.  The usual traffic signal rules apply, including right turns on red.  However, at some ramps you will see more than one right turn lane like the exit ramp from northbound Interstate 275 at Fowler Avenue (Exit 51, FL 582).  You are probably asking yourself, is it legal to make a right turn on red from any one of the multiple right turn lanes?

I came across this article on Bay News 9 by their Real Time Traffic Expert, Chuck Henson.  The answer, according to Sgt. Steve Gaskins of the Florida Highway Patrol as mentioned in the article, is this:  Yes, you are allowed to make a right turn on red no matter which right turn lane you are in, provided there are no traffic control devices such as signage that prohibit right turns on red.

OK.  We know that it's legal to make a right turn on red provided that the way is clear and that there is not a sign posted that prohibits right turns on red.  Obviously, if you see a sign that says no turn on red, that's letting you know that you cannot make a right turn on red at that location.

What about those multiple right turn lanes as Chuck Henson mentioned in the Bay News 9 article?  Again, it is legal to make a right turn on red from any of the multiple right turn lanes unless a sign tells you otherwise.  However, I have seen signage on multiple right turn lanes (especially in the Miami area) where you are only allowed to make a right turn on red only from the right turn lane closest to the curb; the other right turn lanes you are not permitted to make a right turn on red.

Simply put, you may make a right turn on red from any multiple right turn lane.  But be careful for any signage posted prohibiting any turn on red - after all, the worst thing you need is a ticket for running a red light when you turned on red only to find out that there was a sign prohibiting turns on red.

And one more thing:  No so-called "California stops" when making a right turn on red.  You must first come to a complete stop for the red light, then make the turn when the way is clear.  This is very important, especially when you come upon a photo enforcement camera controlled intersection.