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147 posts

Master Geek

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  Reply # 387690 4-Oct-2010 14:15 Send private message


My belated two cents... at first I also thought it didn’t make sense to leave the right-turning cars in the middle of the road till last – the current rule seems perfectly logical in that sense. However, the reason for the changes has been explained to me by those who know about such things and it also makes sense. Maybe more sense.

At the moment, a left turning car has to be aware of: cyclists to their left, pedestrians on the crossing they are turning into, right turning cars they have to give way to and cars behind them that are going straight through.

(Mauricio – from your posts, it seems like you think those cars going straight through are trying to ‘sneak past’ the left turning car. However, as far as I am aware, and how I was taught to apply the road rules by instructors, is that if you are ‘covered’ by a straight through car, which the right-turning car has to give way to, then the left-turning car is free to make the turn, provided there are no cyclists/pedestrians)

So at the moment, a left-turning car has to check for right turning cars on the other side of the intersection, check behind them on one side for straight-through cars that cover their turn, check the other side for cyclists, and check the crossing for pedestrians. That’s 4 different directions they have to look at once, hence the increased risk of crash.

Under the proposed system, the left turning car, while obviously still having to be aware of other cars, is largely free to focus on the direction they are turning. They have to check for cyclists to their left and pedestrians they might encounter, also to the left. Right turning cars have a better view of all 4 of the hazards I listed above, because they are all in the same vicinity and can be seen by scanning that section of the road, which is in front of them. The more freely left-turning traffic and the right-turning traffic being on hold also allows straight-through traffic to be more confident that a right turning car is not going to cross their path while the left-turning driver is hesitating about whether or not they need to give way to the right turning car (and in the process potentially missing a cyclist/pedestrian hazard as they are not looking in the direction they are turning).

And while the right-turning car may have to wait longer in some situations, any major/busy intersections should have a right lane/arrow to let them through first, before the rest of the traffic even has their turn. Otherwise, a little patience goes a long way, something most drivers seem to be sorely lacking in!

Crashes will still happen, but the idea is less will. Whether that pans out remains to be seen, and I’m still sceptical based on the fact that nobody knows how to apply the bloody road rules as it is!

However, having been a pedestrian in Australia for 2 months now, I can certainly tell you from that perspective that the rule works. Turning car drivers seem to be much more aware of pedestrians, and more often than not left-turning cars will wait for me to cross – I’m yet to work out if that is actually a rule as well, and they all should be giving way to me?

As an aside... as others have said, most people don't know the current uncontrolled T-intersection rules. However, learning to drive in Christchurch, this rule was drummed into me by driving instructors. There was a favourite intersection the licence testers used to love tripping people up and failing them with! They've since change the intersection now, not sure if they do this somewhere else instead now.




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  Reply # 387693 4-Oct-2010 14:29

NickiB:
At the moment, a left turning car has to be aware of: cyclists to their left, pedestrians on the crossing they are turning into, right turning cars they have to give way to and cars behind them that are going straight through.

(Mauricio – from your posts, it seems like you think those cars going straight through are trying to ‘sneak past’ the left turning car. However, as far as I am aware, and how I was taught to apply the road rules by instructors, is that if you are ‘covered’ by a straight through car, which the right-turning car has to give way to, then the left-turning car is free to make the turn, provided there are no cyclists/pedestrians)



If you saw a right turning car waiting to turn and you were going to slow down and turn left anyway it was no big deal to slow early and let the right turner through before the cars behind you had the chance to barge past. Remember you were supposed to be indicating well before the turn.

147 posts

Master Geek

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  Reply # 387697 4-Oct-2010 14:43 Send private message



If you saw a right turning car waiting to turn and you were going to slow down and turn left anyway it was no big deal to slow early and let the right turner through before the cars behind you had the chance to barge past. Remember you were supposed to be indicating well before the turn.


That is exactly why the current rule is confusing for left turners. It is a) difficult to assess whether or not there is enough time between you and the car behind you for the right-turner to go, and hence whether you should give way to them and b) impossible to read the mind of the right-turner to know if they are going to take advantage of that gap!

Those with the immediate right of way are those cars going straight through. They are not 'sneaking' or 'barging', they are simply following the rules of the road (refer the sentence "Note: be aware of the traffic behind you. If you were in the blue car, vehicles travelling behind you may affect whether the truck can turn or not." and associated diagram from this page in the road code). A left-turner should not be holding them up waiting for a right-turner who has to give way to that straight through traffic. Allowing left and straight through traffic simultaneous right of way leaves the right-turner with the onus to ensure all traffic opposite them is clear before turning, rather than having a left-turner having to assess traffic from two different directions, including behind them and not being certain about what the right-turners intentions are.




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Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 387698 4-Oct-2010 14:43 Send private message

Bung: If you saw a right turning car waiting to turn and you were going to slow down and turn left anyway it was no big deal to slow early and let the right turner through before the cars behind you had the chance to barge past. Remember you were supposed to be indicating well before the turn.


I would hardly call it 'barging past' when it's their right of way! You seem to take it that vehicles are travelling on the wrong side of the road to get past when this very often isn't the case.

What about when the oncoming vehicle that's turning right indicates late? The left turning vehicle is still currently legally bound to give way, again this doesn't make sense.

There's a reason the rest of the world doesn't have this rule and why it is being changed here.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 387704 4-Oct-2010 14:59 Send private message

NickiB:  impossible to read the mind of the right-turner to know if they are going to take advantage of that gap!


NickiB has hit the nail on the head here.  If you misjudge the speed, distance and intention of the vehicle behind you, you are risking the possibility of a 3 car crash.

Like I said earlier, giving way to oncoming traffic reduces the number of factors in the decision whether to go or not, thereby reducing the risk of a crash (IMO).




Procrastination eventually pays off.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 387738 4-Oct-2010 15:46 Send private message

The change is good and makes complete sense. Tongue out

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  Reply # 387744 4-Oct-2010 15:54

NickiB:

Those with the immediate right of way are those cars going straight through. They are not 'sneaking' or 'barging', they are simply following the rules of the road (refer the sentence "Note: be aware of the traffic behind you. If you were in the blue car, vehicles travelling behind you may affect whether the truck can turn or not." and associated diagram from this page in the road code). A left-turner should not be holding them up waiting for a right-turner who has to give way to that straight through traffic. Allowing left and straight through traffic simultaneous right of way leaves the right-turner with the onus to ensure all traffic opposite them is clear before turning, rather than having a left-turner having to assess traffic from two different directions, including behind them and not being certain about what the right-turners intentions are.


I don't disagree that the change will simplify matters.

In the case of your blue car example from the road code, the way it is shown is fairly typical. There isn't sufficient room for following traffic to pass the blue car without pulling out to pass. I don't believe that the following traffic would have immediate right of way if they followed their obligations as far as overtaking goes

"
If you do decide to pass, follow the rules shown below.



Before you pass:




  • make sure you will be able to see at least 100 metres of clear road ahead of you once you have finished passing - if
    not, don't pass

  • look well ahead to make sure there are no vehicles coming towards you

  • look behind to make sure there are no vehicles passing you

  • signal right for at least three seconds before moving out to pass."


"

Passing by crossing the centre line at an intersection
You can cross the centre line to pass another vehicle if you can see that:




  • the way in front of you is clear, and

  • there are no vehicles coming out of any side roads."




147 posts

Master Geek

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  Reply # 390616 11-Oct-2010 19:37 Send private message

Bung:
In the case of your blue car example from the road code, the way it is shown is fairly typical. There isn't sufficient room for following traffic to pass the blue car without pulling out to pass. I don't believe that the following traffic would have immediate right of way if they followed their obligations as far as overtaking goes



The overtaking rules are irrelevant here. The straight through car does not overtake the left turning car, they do not have to go around the car, or cross the centre lines. The car won't even be there, if it's following the rules correctly. Unfortunately the road code is not 100% clear on exactly how it works, the best I could come up with was the link provided.

However, it is as follows:
In a line of traffic which contains left turning and straight through cars, the left turning cars are covered by a straight through car. If I'm turning left, and there is a car waiting opposite to turn right, but I can see a car behind me is not indicating (you have to assume, unfortunately, that others are indicating correctly here) and is hence travelling straight through, then I will make my left turn (being aware of pedestrian/cycle hazards). Then that piece of road will be free for the straight turning car to travel through! Magic.

The problem, in addition to the hazard identification issues I wrote a novel about above, is that people do not follow the rule correctly. It is more confusing than the proposed new rule, and it is difficult to apply because it requires the left turning car to be aware of traffic/hazards from 3 different directions. Hence the proposal and subsequent announcement of the change by government.




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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 390645 11-Oct-2010 20:55 Send private message

I think the handsome young man at 1.33 says it all really:


http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/right-hand-rule-change-in-2012-2-44-video-3808615





________
AK

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  Reply # 390664 11-Oct-2010 21:43

NickiB:
Bung:
In the case of your blue car example from the road code, the way it is shown is fairly typical. There isn't sufficient room for following traffic to pass the blue car without pulling out to pass. I don't believe that the following traffic would have immediate right of way if they followed their obligations as far as overtaking goes



The overtaking rules are irrelevant here. The straight through car does not overtake the left turning car, they do not have to go around the car, or cross the centre lines. The car won't even be there, if it's following the rules correctly. Unfortunately the road code is not 100% clear on exactly how it works, the best I could come up with was the link provided.

However, it is as follows:
In a line of traffic which contains left turning and straight through cars, the left turning cars are covered by a straight through car. If I'm turning left, and there is a car waiting opposite to turn right, but I can see a car behind me is not indicating (you have to assume, unfortunately, that others are indicating correctly here) and is hence travelling straight through, then I will make my left turn (being aware of pedestrian/cycle hazards). Then that piece of road will be free for the straight turning car to travel through! Magic.

The problem, in addition to the hazard identification issues I wrote a novel about above, is that people do not follow the rule correctly. It is more confusing than the proposed new rule, and it is difficult to apply because it requires the left turning car to be aware of traffic/hazards from 3 different directions. Hence the proposal and subsequent announcement of the change by government.


That defies reason, you would be very brave to not give way because a car somewhere behind you needs you out of the way to proceed. If you had another lane beside you for through traffic that would be another thing.

147 posts

Master Geek

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  Reply # 390691 11-Oct-2010 22:50 Send private message

Bung: 

That defies reason, you would be very brave to not give way because a car somewhere behind you needs you out of the way to proceed. If you had another lane beside you for through traffic that would be another thing.


Not brave. Correct. And that is how I've always driven and never even had a near miss. Yes, it is easier if there are lanes. However, if everyone followed the rule properly instead of dithering around it might actually work better! I still think the proposed rules are an improvement anyway, even if everyone followed the current rules correctly.

I finally found a diagram that explains the current rule well too:
http://fushnchups.co.nz/2009/04/02/carnage-at-the-crossroads/




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  Reply # 390699 11-Oct-2010 23:15

If you read the accompanying text the writer of that blog drew the diagram to illustrate the point I made, that the left turning car gives way to the right turning car and the car going straight through waits. The discussion then covered whether or not many roads were wide enough for the following car to be able to proceed without waiting.


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Master Geek

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  Reply # 390708 11-Oct-2010 23:56 Send private message

Bung: If you read the accompanying text the writer of that blog drew the diagram to illustrate the point I made, that the left turning car gives way to the right turning car and the car going straight through waits. The discussion then covered whether or not many roads were wide enough for the following car to be able to proceed without waiting.



Just wrote a damn reply and GZ lost it when I hit post >(

I skimmed the words and thought they had it right. in fact they are wrong, the order is blue, yellow, red. However my main point was to show a diagram (should have detached it and posted it, was lazy) that had three cars in it, unlike the simplistic road code diagrams. If they actually covered this properly we might get a final answer!

The legislation isn't much more help either:

(2) A driver changing lanes or about to change lanes, or turning or about to turn, must give way to any vehicle not changing lanes, or not making a turn.

(2A) A driver turning or about to turn to his or her left must give way to any vehicle approaching from the opposite direction and lawfully turning or about to turn to its right. 

However, I would interpret this as: the left turning car must give way to traffic turning right lawfully. A right turning car who is turning into straight through (ie oncoming) traffic is making the turn unlawfully. Therefore the left turner does not have to give way to them (although would in practice, if the right turner gunned it, to try and avoid the carnage in the second diagram in the previous link).

That's my final word (promise!). Unless we can get someone with some authority on this, we may have to agree to disagree until the law is changed. 






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  Reply # 390722 12-Oct-2010 06:34 Send private message

The only fair way to do this is to use the right hand rule on odd days and the other rule on even days, that way everyone gets a turn.

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  Reply # 390756 12-Oct-2010 09:01 Send private message

kiwitrc: The only fair way to do this is to use the right hand rule on odd days and the other rule on even days, that way everyone gets a turn.


Nah, people will just not follow the rule just like they don't follow it today.

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