Cutting Across The Yellow Lines To Make A Left Turn?

Cutting Across The Yellow Lines To Make A Left Turn?

Practically every day when I’m stopped at a red light or intersection, I’ll notice a driver cut across the double yellow lines to navigate around traffic.  The offending vehicle will usually undertake this dangerous maneuver when the driver is approaching the left-turning lane, but doesn’t want to wait for traffic to clear.  So what does he do?  He cuts across the double yellow lanes and for a brief moment drives against oncoming traffic, to the left of the the yellow lines.

I’ve seen many close calls in this scenario, and as a Los Angeles car accident attorney, I can’t help but wonder how many accidents happen daily because of this dangerous maneuver.

The Vehicle Code prohibits driving to the left of the double yellow lines, except in limited circumstances.  These include making a left turn into a driveway; making a U-turn where it’s permitted; moving out of the way of an emergency vehicle; or to pass a slower moving vehicle when the inside yellow line is broken (and not solid).

We’ve all been tempted to cut across the yellow lines to get around stopped traffic.  It can be agonizing knowing that you’re so close to the intersection and ready to turn left, but there are five cars stopped ahead of you blocking your path.

But cutting across the double yellow lines is illegal and incredibly dangerous.  What happens if you don’t see an oncoming car, and you begin to cut across the lines and are involved in a head-on collision?  The injuries associated with these types of accidents can be devastating.  And you will very likely be found at fault in this scenario because the Vehicle Code prohibits this maneuver.

Be patient, and wait for traffic to clear! Haste always makes waste, and your attempt to shave a few seconds off your commute time can cause  years of painful consequences.  Don’t do it!

Be safe, and for questions about your case, my office is here to assist.