–Constable Tim Schewe
I had an interesting conversation with @itsjim84 on Twitter this morning about the case law article I posted this week on driving over painted traffic islands. He observed that in the case of a left turn queue that had extended past the left turn bay due to insufficient length it was better to be stopped on the painted island instead of in the through lane. Stopping on the island would preclude being hit from behind by through traffic and allow traffic to flow.
It would also cut down on the number of drivers who would drive over the cycle lane on the right in order to get by stopped traffic.
@itsjim84’s example was the intersection of the Fraser Highway and Lefeuver Road in Abbotsford (below).
From the look of the worn painted diagonals in the island many drivers share his concern.
This intersection has seen 101 collisions between 2011 and 2015 according to ICBC. 53 of those crashes involved casualties. Unfortunately, we are not able to see the contributing factors for these incidents to determine if the left turn bay is a major contributor or not.
I suggested that we tend to think of our own convenience instead of the convenience of others. Since it is improper to drive on or over the island (see page 40 of Learn to Drive Smart) one might choose to continue on to the next opportunity to turn left when the turn bay was full instead of fouling the through lane.
@itsjim84 responded that not blocking a single lane highway during rush hour because the municipality hasn’t provided a sufficient turn queue is about not being inconvenient to others. The only other streets to turn on are residential streets, not arterials.
Perhaps it all comes down to expectations.
Many drivers feel that nothing should get in the way of arriving at their destination in the shortest possible time with the least amount of inconvenience. Must Not Stop.
Faced with inconvenience, some of these drivers will do whatever it takes to keep going whether it is legal or not. Sadly, part of this group have no idea that things they do are illegal. Worse still, those that do know will disobey though choice. I’m important, you are not.
Throw in a driver or two who want to follow the rules as they are currently written and where do we end up? Confused, and confusion causes problems. Reference the numbers above for this intersection and our provincial crash rates.
We’ll never reach the utopia of having as much pavement and as little other traffic as we want. Laws will lag behind current realities but unless there is a legal justification for disobeying, we must follow them or face consequences.
Even though we don’t like to, sometimes we must expect to stop.
- DriveSmartBC: Reporting commercial transport traffic violations
- DriveSmartBC: Producing Your Driver’s Licence
- DriveSmartBC: Speed from skidmarks at a collision scene
- DriveSmartBC: Glaring fog lamps
- DriveSmartBC: Driving with vision obstructed
- DriveSmartBC: Maintaining Proper Lane Position
- DriveSmartBC: The armpit belt
- DriveSmartBC: Back to School 2019
- DriveSmartBC: Settling a debate about impeding traffic
- DriveSmartBC: Pavement Marking in Progress
- DriveSmartBC: Think Ahead!
- DriveSmartBC: Should I Signal?
- DriveSmartBC: When emergency vehicles can violate traffic rules
- DriveSmartBC: Turning Right in Sechelt
- DriveSmartBC: RCMP advanced driver training taught the four corners of the car
- Distracted Driving Laws in B.C.
- DriveSmartBC: “Spring Cleaning” for your trailer’s surge brakes
- DriveSmartBC: The Wisdom of Google
- DriveSmartBC: Please, Not So Close!
- DriveSmartBC: The ICBC “Dumpster Fire”
- DriveSmartBC: Intersection watch, stop sign refresher
- DriveSmartBC: Things that go bump in the parking lot
- DriveSmartBC: Problems with deferred maintenance
- DriveSmartBC: Fear of police retaliation
- DriveSmartBC: Taking cyclists seriously
- Car owner tip: Refer to your owner’s manual
- DriveSmart: Exit not required, you can stay an “N” drivers forever!
- Resistance to stopping can be overcome, for safety’s sake
- DriveSmart: Why didn’t the pedestrian cross the road?
- DriveSmart: It’s winter tire time again