Left Turn was a bimonthly activist news magazine that focused on international social justice movements. Based in New York City and produced by an all volunteer editorial collective, the magazine promoted anti-imperialism and anti-authoritarianism.
Left Turn had its roots in the anti-capitalist wing of the Global Justice Movement and was founded in the wake of the anti-WTO protests in Seattle in 1999 by a small group of socialists.
The magazine’s tagline, “Notes from the Global Intifada”, was inspired by the then ongoing Palestinian intifada. The magazine supported grassroots activists with the Palestine Solidarity Movement. The magazine ceased print publication after the August 2011 issue, but continues to operate a website.
Left turns– To make a left turn, drive close to the center divider line or into the left turn lane. Begin signaling
about 100 feet before the turn. Look over your left shoulder and reduce your speed. Stop behind the limit line. Look left, then right, then left again, and make the turn when it is safe. When you turn left, do not turn too soon and “cut the corner” of the lane belonging to the vehicles coming towards you.
Keep your wheels pointed straight ahead until it is safe to start your turn. If your wheels are pointed to the left and a vehicle hits you from behind, you could be pushed into oncoming traffic. A left turn against a red light can only be made from a one-way street onto a one-way street. Signal and stop for a red traffic light at the marked limit line. If there is no limit line, stop before entering the crosswalk. If there is no crosswalk, stop before entering the intersection. You may turn left into a left-moving, one-way street if there is no sign to prohibit the turn. Yield to pedestrians, bicyclists, or other vehicles moving on their green light.
Right turns–To make a right turn, drive close to the right edge of the road. If there is a bike lane, drive into the bike lane no more than 200 feet before the turn. Watch for pedestrians, bicyclists, or motorcyclists who may get between your vehicle and the curb. Begin signaling about 100 feet before the turn. Look over your right shoulder and reduce your speed. Stop behind the limit line. Look both ways and turn when it is safe. Do not turn wide into another lane. Complete your turn in the right lane.
200 feet is over half the length of an American football field.
Public Transit Bus Lanes–It is illegal to drive, stop, park, or leave a vehicle standing in the area of a road designated for the exclusive use of public transit buses unless a vehicle must cross the lane to make a turn. Signs will be posted to indicate the lanes are for “bus only” use.
Right turn against a red traffic signal light–Signal and stop for a red traffic signal light at the marked limit line. If there is no limit line, stop before entering the crosswalk. If there is no crosswalk, stop before entering the intersection. You may turn right if there is no sign to prohibit the turn. Yield to pedestrians, motorcyclists, bicyclists, or other vehicles moving on their green traffic signal light.
Right turn onto a road with a dedicated lane–You may make a right turn without stopping if the road you are turning onto has a nonmerging lane dedicated to right turning vehicles, and there is no sign to prohibit a free right turn. You may proceed without stopping, even if there is a red traffic signal light located within the island for vehicles proceeding straight through the intersection. If there is a traffic signal light or sign on the right curb of the right turn lane, you must follow the directions of that traffic signal light or sign. Always yield to pedestrians within a crosswalk.
Examples Of Right and Left Turns
Numbers on the cars in the diagrams refer to numbered sentences on these pages. Always use your turn signals.
1. Left turn from a two-way street. Start the turn in the left lane closest to the middle of the street. Complete the turn, if safe, in either lane of the cross street (shown by the arrows). Use the center left turn lane if one is available. A left turn may be made from the other lane, if permitted by signs or arrows.
2. Right turn. Begin and end the turn in the lane nearest the right edge of the road. Do not swing wide into another lane of traffic. Watch for pedestrians, motorcyclists, and bicyclists between your vehicle and the curb. Sometimes, signs or pavement markings will let you turn right from another lane as shown by the graphic.
3. Left turn from a two-way street into a one-way street. Start the turn from the lane closest to the middle of the street. Turn into any lane that is safely open, as shown by the arrows.
4. Left turn from a one-way street into a two-way street. Start the turn from the far left lane. Turn into either of the lanes that are safely open, as shown by the arrows.
5. Left turn from a one-way street into a one-way street. Start the turn from the far left lane. Watch for pedestrians, motorcyclists, and bicyclists between your vehicle and the curb because they can legally use the left turn lane for their left turns. Turn into any lane that is safely open, as shown by the arrows.
6. Right turn from a one-way street into a one-way street. Start the turn in the far right lane. If safe, you may end the turn in any lane. Sometimes, signs or pavement markings will let you turn right from another lane, as shown by the graphic.
7. Turn at a “T” intersection from a one-way street into a two-way street. Through traffic has the right-of-way. You may turn either right or left from the center lane. Watch for vehicles, motorcyclists, and bicyclists inside your turn.
Check Out Our Visuals to Help You Understand
The graphic below shows that some states (e.g., Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Nevada, and North Carolina) prohibit entering the right lane when making the left turn.
Some states are less strict and allow drivers to complete a left turn into either lane of the cross street as shown below, e.g., California, Missouri, Texas. Consult your state’s Drivers handbook for details.
The next graphic shows which lanes are used by cars turning from a two-way street onto a one-way street and from a one-way street to a two-way street. After coming to a complete stop, you may make a turn onto a one-way street from another two-way street (unless otherwise indicated).
Here is an example of making turns in California and Texas. Notice that the driver may complete the turn in any lane open to traffic if it is safe to do so as shown by arrows below.
- Turn on the left turn signal before you make the turn and slow down.
- Look both ways and make sure that the oncoming lanes are clear.
- Make the turn from the designated lane (use left lane).
- Do not enter into the right lane. In some states, it is illegal to enter the right lane after the turn is completed.
When approaching the intersection, signal for the turn and watch for:
- pedestrians at the crosswalk
- traffic coming from your left and right
- any vehicles established in or blocking the intersection
- traffic approaching from the opposite direction
Never enter any intersection:
- if it’s not safe to do so
- Or if you will not be able to clear the intersection because traffic is backed up in the lane you wish to enter
- if the intersection is blocked
Making left turns onto driveways and lanes
To make a left turn onto a driveway or back lane, signal and move into the proper lane before turning left.
Making left turns from two-way onto one-way street
- Signal and, when safe, move into the lane next to the centre line in preparation for the turn.
- Slow down before entering the intersection, check for traffic ahead and to the right and, when safe, begin the turn.
- Turn from the lane next to the centre line into the lane nearest the left curb unless it’s blocked within 30 metres of the intersection.
- If a lane change is required, decide well in advance to make your left turn. Signal and check your rear gate and blind spot to see if there is a vehicle close to you. Move safely into the left side of the left lane.
- Check for traffic, pedestrians and any other real or potential hazards that may be in or near the intersection. Use the basic left, straight ahead, right, left sweeping pattern.
- Slow down (and shift to a lower gear if you are driving a manual transmission vehicle).
- Check again for real or potential hazards. Watch out for motorcycles when completing a left turn. Motorists failing to identify oncoming motorcycles when making a left turn is a significant contributing factor in collisions involving motorcycles.
- If you have to stop in the intersection to wait for oncoming traffic, be sure to keep your vehicle parallel to the lane and your front wheels straight. That way if you are hit from behind, you will not be pushed in the path of oncoming traffic.
- If there are no potential hazards, complete your left turn into the first available driving lane.
Thank you for staying with this post “when completing a left turn” until the end.