ORLANDO, Fla. – News 6 traffic safety expert Trooper Steve Montiero answers viewer questions about the rules of the road every week, helping Central Florida residents become better drivers by being better educated.
Trooper Steve was asked, “What should drivers know about making a right turn on a red light?”
He said it’s the No. 1 question he’s gotten asked over the years and in a variety of ways.
“Here in the state of Florida, you are allowed to make a right turn at a red light in mostly all cases,” Trooper Steve said. “Now, of course, there are rules just like with any traffic movement that come along with this.”
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Those rules involve drivers always treating a red light as a stop sign and yielding to the right of way of any other traffic before making the right turn.
When it comes to a road that has multiple right turn lanes, the same rules apply.
“The question comes up, ‘Can I make a right turn from the left right turning lane?’ And the answer is, ‘Yes, as long as there is no sign indicating otherwise.’”
Drivers can also turn right on a red arrow light, Trooper Steve added.
“This (light) is shaped like this to indicate what lane it is designated for. The biggest confusion is a lot of people feel this means they cannot make a right turn until it turns green. I guess a little traffic myth but you are able to make that right,” he said.
Trooper Steve said when a right turn on a red light is not allowed, there will be a sign to indicate this.
“This sign can either be a visual type picture with a right arrow crossed out or a text traffic sign. Signs would indicate ‘Right turn from right lane only,’ ‘No right on red.’ However, the signs vary. There would be a specific sign in the proper location indicating if you were not permitted to make that right turn,” he said.
But while making a right turn on a red light is allowed unless a sign says otherwise, Trooper Steve said a driver isn’t required to make that turn.
“A driver could basically sit there with a blinker on indicating they want to make a right turn, and not do so until the light turns green, he said. “Will this driver probably be honked at by other drivers? Yes. But other drivers should also be mindful that they may also not want to make a right on red one day. There may be traffic coming or a pedestrian or even the driver doesn’t feel it can be done safely because there is a blind spot.”
But whatever the color of the light, Trooper Steve reminds drivers it’s just important to drive safely.
If you have a traffic question for Trooper Steve, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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