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8. Rules of the Road

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2. Stop

Red Means Stop!

Actually, red means that an action is forbidden (you don't "stop" at a red curb!), and whenever you see ANY red signal or road marking, it is up to you, as a responsible driver, to know what action is forbidden.


Although it seems simple enough, the definition of STOP means all cessation of movement. The only way the examiner "knows" you made a complete STOP on your drive test, is to feel the "inertia tug", where your body continues slightly forward when the car stops.

Without this tug, a "complete" stop was NOT made, and you will be marked off on your test for not making a full stop.


Stop

STOP LAWS are covered in the Vehicle Code, Sections 21453.


The YIELD sign, for example, doesn't mean STOP. It means that you are FORBIDDEN from entering an intersection UNTIL you have yielded to all other traffic and pedestrians. You MAY need to STOP, but not necessarily.

The STOP sign means that you are FORBIDDEN from entering an intersection until you have made a complete stop at one of three places; the white limit line, the FIRST crosswalk line, or at a point where you can see traffic in all directions.


The RED on this sign indicates that you are FORBIDDEN to continue driving in this direction. Instead of STOPPING, you must make a turn or otherwise continue in a different direction.


The flashing RED light indicates one of two things; there may have been a power interruption and the intersection is treated as a four-way STOP , or it indicates a dangerous intersection, and is used as an exclamation point to an already existing STOP sign. In ANY case, it means that you are FORBIDDEN to enter the intersection, until a complete STOP has been made.


A RED circle, with a diagonal slash, is the universal sign for NO , or FORBIDDEN action. In this sign, trucks are FORBIDDEN on this street or highway.


A RED curb means that stopping, standing, or parking here is FORBIDDEN . Even buses and emergency vehicles are FORBIDDEN from this area, unless a sign permits it, or if an actual emergency exists.


A RED arrow means that travel, in the direction of the arrow, is FORBIDDEN . You may not make a right-turn-on-red against a RED arrow.


A SOLID RED light means EXACTLY the same thing as a STOP sign. Movement into the intersection is FORBIDDEN , until a COMPLETE STOP has been made at one of the three locations. A right-turn-on-red MAY be made against a SOLID RED light, but ONLY after a complete stop has been made.


In any case, STOPPING is a required action whenever the traffic flow is dangerous enough to demand it. A smart driver doesn't need a sign or a signal to KNOW what the safest action is. Stop signs, red lights, and other indicators are placed where a driver can expect to come into conflict with other traffic, and there is good reason to STOP.

Lesson Summary


  

Lesson 8 Quiz


You will now answer 5 questions to test what you learned during this lesson. You must answer all questions correctly to receive completion credit for this lesson. You may answer the questions as many times as necessary to get them right.

You should review the lesson material if you don't do well on the quiz.

  1. You must use your turn signal


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  2. The minimum speed limit in California is:


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  3. Entering an intersection before you can safely cross through it, and blocking it:


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  4. In California, changing lanes in the middle of an intersection:


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  5. A right-turn-on-red can be made, at a red arrow:


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