Drivesmart column: Learn to yield and make roadway safer

Sometimes through traffic does have to yield to those who are trying to enter or leave the highway.

Ah courtesy, where have you gone? You are certainly scarce on the highways and byways of our fair province! When was the last time another driver did something nice for you to facilitate a movement? Did you wave to say thank you afterward? We can all get along nicely with a bit of courtesy now and again.

Here is the message from the DriveSmartBC inbox that triggered my observation:

“One thing that really bugs me is that drivers almost push their way into traffic. Whether it be coming from a side street or backing out from their driveway they don’t seem to know that they shouldn’t be impeding rolling traffic. I was always taught that if you are entering a roadway one should do so that moving traffic doesn’t have to significantly slow, or in some cases jam on their brakes to let you in.”

Yes, there are many drivers who don’t know the meaning of the word yield, including this reader. They will no doubt be shocked to learn that sometimes through traffic does have to yield to those who are trying to enter or leave the highway. Heaven forbid!

If I am attempting to turn left at an intersection and you are approaching me from the front, if you are close enough to be a hazard, I must yield and let you pass by. However, if you are not, you must yield and allow me to turn left.

Don’t EVER count on approaching traffic to do this.

If I have stopped at the stop sign on a cross street and yielded to traffic passing by on the through street, if you are not approaching closely, you must yield and let me enter or cross the through street.

Drivers who wait patiently for a gap in the traffic when it is heavy may wait for hours, so they do creep forward until a passing driver is uncomfortable and stops to let them in.

Of course, there are also drivers who jam themselves into traffic without regard for others in order to save a few seconds. They may be charged for failing to yield the right of way as well.

For those who are trying to do this backward, the entire onus to proceed safely is on the driver who is travelling in reverse.

As all of my driving instructor friends will tell you, right of way is given, not taken.

Tim Schewe is a retired constable.

Column

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Trail council rejects rezoning bylaw for senior housing project

Rezoning application peaked concerns from several nearby residents

Plane crashes into Nelson supermarket parking lot

Pilot and passenger have minor injuries

Trail invited to ‘Climb’

70,000-kilometre hiking challenge to support people living with dementia

Shady dealings invade B.C. rental market, online sales

Advisory from the Better Business Bureau

Adrian Dix: It’s time to renew the fight to stop the spread

We must recommit to using our COVID sense to keep us safe, stop the spread and save lives

VIDEO: Otter pups learn to swim at B.C. wildlife rescue facility

Watch Critter Care’s Nathan Wagstaffe help seven young otters go for their first dip

Michael Buble among 13 British Columbians to receive Order of B.C.

Ceremony will be delayed to 2021 due to COVID-19

U.S. border communities feel loss of Canadian tourists, shoppers and friends

Restrictions on non-essential travel across the Canada-U.S. border have been in place since March 2`

Rollout of COVID-19 Alert app faces criticism over accessibility

App requires users to have Apple or Android phones made in the last five years, and a relatively new operating system

Alleged impaired driver sparks small wildfire near Lytton after crash: B.C. RCMP

Good Samaritans prevented the blaze from getting out of control

B.C. First Nation adopts ‘digital twinning’ software to better manage territory

Software allows users to visualize what a mountain might look like if the trees on its slopes were logged

All inquiry recommendations implemented after fatal Port Hardy RCMP shooting: Ministry

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. cleared the RCMP officers involved of wrongdoing

Leave your deets when dining: Restaurants taking personal info to trace COVID-19

Health officials say indoor dining presents a higher risk

Most Read