Dear Street Smarts,
What are the rules for making right turns from the shoulder? I'm thinking southbound Highway 1 at River Street and/or northbound Highway 1 at Western Drive. Both these intersections have long, paved shoulders. Some drivers use the shoulder as a right turn lane, getting started far from the intersection, others wait until closer. Is there a rule that covers this or is it every driver for him/her self?
Jon Krupp, Santa Cruz
CHP officer Sarah Jackson quoted the California Vehicle Code while responding to your question.
- Section 22100 indicates that right turns "shall be made as close as practicable to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway."
- Section 22107 prohibits turning movements "until such movement can be made with reasonable safety and then only after the giving of an appropriate signal.”
- Section 22108 defines the appropriate signal as, "continuously during the last 100 feet traveled by the vehicle before turning.”
“As long as the driver gives a continuous turn signal or 100 feet prior, and ensures that the movement can be made safely, vehicles can enter the bicycle lane or right hand shoulder prior to making a right turn” Jackson explained. “However, if they begin passing other moving vehicles still in the lane or if the shoulder/bicycle lane driving is for a protracted length, they may be cited for shoulder passing – section 21755.”
Moving your vehicle as far to the right as possible when making a turn is necessary to avoid so-called “right-hook” collisions with bicyclists and not interrupt traffic movement within the lane, she explained.
Care and caution must be used when driving on the shoulder to avoid striking cyclists, pedestrians, and even law enforcement officers, Jackson continued.
“In June of 2010, Officer Phillip Ortiz was struck and killed in this way,” she said. “He had several friends who work here in the Santa Cruz Area. This is a violation we take quite seriously.”
Learn more about Ortiz at http://www.chp.ca.gov/memorial/memorial2010.html
Changes welcome at High, Bay
I have to agree with Max Buxbaum's comments (Street Smarts, April 25) about the Bay Drive and High Street intersection. It is an accident waiting to happen. We live just north of that intersection above the Western Avenue and High intersection. Vehicles from the Bonny Doon area often come down High at 50 mph. The sign for the 25 mph limit is below Western Drive and is not all that visible. The sign for 25 mph needs to be well above Western. There are all manner of buses and very large dump trucks on that road. In addition, as one approaches the Bay/High intersection, it is very difficult to see whether the traffic light because of the elevation of High and the fact that they aren't big and visible enough. In addition, you have students crossing wherever they want and not at the intersection.
Charles Presto, Santa Cruz