Ask Trooper Steve: Red light vs. U-turn, who has the right of way?

Trooper Steve answers viewer questions

ORLANDO, Fla. – News 6 traffic safety expert Trooper Steve Montiero answers viewer questions and shares tips about the rules of the road, helping Central Florida residents become better drivers by being better educated.

The most recent question addressed by Trooper Steve was, “When making a right turn on red, who has the right of way over someone making a U-turn?”

[TRENDING: Search continues for Gabby Petito’s boyfriend | Pfizer: COVID vaccine works in kids 5-11 | Become a News 6 Insider]

“To answer this question, we are going to base this primarily around who has what type of traffic light, but even then it’s not that easy,” Trooper Steve said. “When making a right turn at a red light, there are multiple steps that need to be taken in order to make sure that it is done safely and legally.”

He said you will need to make a complete stop at the red light and make sure there’s no sign saying that you’re not allowed to make a right turn on a red light.  

“Then, of course, the second portion of this is yielding to anybody that would have the right of way before you start to move,” Trooper Steve said. “This is where we would address the possible U-turn.”

If you are at the red light waiting to make your right turn and a driver had a greenlight allowing them to make a U-turn, you would have to yield to them since your light is the initial read.

[VIDEO BELOW: Is it legal to drive barefoot in Florida?]

“This would mean you would have no right of way in this situation,” he said. “You would have to pay close attention after stopping to allow other traffic to have their turn,” Trooper Steve said.

Other signage could, of course, affect the outcome to the situation. Signs like “No turn on red” or “U-turn yield to right turn” are all signs that would change everything.

“Eliminating distractions and knowing what you’re doing behind the wheel should be your No. 1 priority,” he said.

About the Authors:

Daniel started with WKMG-TV in 2000 and became the digital content manager in 2009. When he's not working on, Daniel likes to head to the beach or find a sporting event nearby.

Steven Montiero, better known as “Trooper Steve," joined the News 6 morning team as its Traffic Safety Expert in October 2017. A Central Florida native and decorated combat veteran, Montiero comes to the station following an eight-year assignment with the Florida Highway Patrol.