Here are Some Tips for Mastering U-Turns
Most accidents happen at intersections, particularly after a driver has chosen to make a turn. Crashes also occur in the larger parking lots, which are open for public use, such as shopping centers. To prevent such crashes, you have to understand the right-of-way rules. You must also know the best way to make turns.
About right of way
Pavement markings, signals and traffic signs might fail to resolve traffic conflicts. A quick example: a green light will not solve a conflict when a driver decides to turn left at a road intersection when an approaching vehicle is going straight through that intersection. The purpose of right-of-way rules is to help resolve the conflicts. You should know when to wait and when to go first in various conditions.
How to make a safe U-turn
First, what is a U-turn? A U-turn requires you to turn your vehicle 180-degrees on a street and in an opposing direction. It is usually important when a driver finds him/herself at a dead-end road, or when he finds that a road is blocked ahead. If the law permits, a 3-Point Turn might be important in narrower roadways.
To make a U-turn, you have to ascertain that it is lawful. Moreover, you must try to identify other safer alternatives before making the turn. On some roads, you will find posted signs saying that “no U-turns”. The law might prohibit U-turns on hills, freeways and hills. Before you try to complete one, ensure that you are aware of the traffic rules within your area. To safely execute the U-turn, check for traffic and signal right. For the U-turn to be successful, you must get close to the curb and then signal left. Check ahead, the rear view mirror, the blind spot and the side mirrors. If the traffic is clear on both directions, start turning slowly. Stop your vehicle close to the
opposite curb and never rush through the maneuverer. At this point, you should shift into reverse. As you back, turn the wheels to the right and back as far as possible so that you will clear the curb after pulling forward. Stop and shift into drive. If the traffic is clear, proceed into your lane smoothly and faster.
Here are other tips to remember when making the turn
- Reduce the speed when planning to make the U-turn.
- Check traffic on both sides. Check cautiously for motorcycles. That is because most crashes
that involve motorcycle occur when other drivers fail to see them.
- Keep the wheels straight before you start making the turn. If the wheels are already turned
and another vehicle hits you from behind, it might push your vehicle into the oncoming
- Remember that the rear wheels will have to travel inside the front wheels’ path, near the
curb or to the traffic heading towards you.
- Watch for bicyclists, pedestrians, and moped riders because they are hard to see in traffic.
- Be alert for people in wheel chairs, those pushing strollers or pulling wheeled suitcase. They
might remain hidden behind a vehicle.
Never try a U-turn on a hill or highway unless it is necessary. When turning around, use the
driveway, parking lot or any other area and move forward when entering the roadway – do not back up.