I regularly turn left at an intersection (Google satellite view) that I'd best describe as a T but the stem of the T splits around the stop sign:

Google satellite view

I assume this is designed to allow the oncoming traffic to maintain speed when turning North.

Where should I be when heading South to turn (I'm on Lasea Road wanting to turn left onto Bear Creek Pike)?

Due to lack of markings I generally keep right and treat the left side as a single lane flowing in the opposite direction. There is always the inevitable person who comes up and takes the left side. When the far traffic clears for me first I pull out and every time they try to run me off the road once they take off.

Entirely possible I'm wrong but I can't find a definitive answer anywhere.

  • That was my worry; moving to the left requires me to cross over the path of someone coming left off Bear Creek.
    – user53984
    Nov 22, 2016 at 15:03
  • I'd say you should contact your local authority and get them to fix this intersection.
    – JonathanReez
    Nov 24, 2016 at 11:38

1 Answer 1


I'd say

  1. Surely, you should keep to the right at the lane divider. (You mention some drivers cross to the left: they should not; ignore them.)

  2. Furthermore: in any part of the US I've been in, the implication there is that leaving Lasea you can indeed only turn right. I would consider it "sneaky" to turn left "against" the way they're making you point.

(Sure, as with any traffic regulation, if there's nobody around you might turn left, but IMO the implication is you should only turn right.)

Regarding the people in (1) who are actually driving on the wrong side of the road, into traffic for goodness sake - what can you do? Give them a wide berth.

Google shows that the Stop Sign is "indeterminately" placed sort of in the middle of the lane division.

enter image description here

My interpretation coming to this would be:

"The stop sign is badly placed: bad sign placement does happen. You have to deal with it."

Here's an example of the identical situation, but normally marked....

enter image description here

Leaving a WalMart,

  1. There's a lane divider, as at Lasea.

  2. The stop/yield sign is correctly placed, rather than "sitting strangely in the middle of the lane divider".

  3. You're supposed to only turn right here.

So for me, Lasea is the same as this (fully marked / concreted) WalMart exit: (a) it's ("of course") a road division so keep right; (b) you should really only turn right on to the main road.

Regarding the bizarre stop sign, I'd treat it as a case of "Sometimes signs are strangely placed; that's part of driving."

(For me: the fact that the signage is flakey: I'd go out of my way to stick to the rules even more so - you know?)

BTW I often think when driving ..... this sort of issue will be a real challenge for the "driverless cars" that are coming!

  • 6
    I would say that the intersection in the question is poorly marked, but if they really wanted to prohibit left turns, they would put a sign to indicate that.
    – phoog
    Nov 22, 2016 at 20:12
  • 4
    But in your example, it's clearly indicated by the pavement markings: A solid yellow line, a rightward arrow, and the word "only." I should have written "sign or pavement marking," obviously; I'm not sure why I didn't. I also note that the divider in your example is not symmetrical, while the one in the question is. Your intersecting road is divided; the one in the question is not. In short, there are several parameters in which your example differs from the one in the question in ways to suggest that the intersection in the question does not share the right-turn-only nature of your example.
    – phoog
    Nov 22, 2016 at 21:09
  • 1
    TBC: regarding (issue B) "is it right turn only". You're right, one could say that maybe in that state (or whatever) it's OK to turn left there. But regarding (issue A), "must you keep to the right?" Yes! You have to keep to the right!
    – Fattie
    Nov 22, 2016 at 21:32
  • 2
    Hey @Jan - indeed, I was going to say something along the lines ... "In the USA you just don't have those wild "four-lane-cross-over-y-junctions" you see in say Germany..." (If I'm not mistaken you sometimes get those in Aussie/UK, also.) Anyway cheers
    – Fattie
    Nov 24, 2016 at 11:27
  • 1
    I agree with what to do, but disagree that they are attempting to prohibit left turns. The road in question doesn't even turn as sharply to the right as the Walmart image, and it would seem fairly odd to not allow left turns on a road which seems to be in a spare area.
    – Andy
    Jan 6, 2017 at 2:22

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