Motorists muddling old and new rules
‘‘The honeymoon period is over,’’ says Porirua City Council road safety co-ordinator Mark Kairua of the new give-way rules.
Motorists are forgetting the new rules. When two give-way rules changed on March 25, drivers were over-cautious and followed the rules well, but now they are hesitant at intersections, Mr Kairua says.
Though there have been no accidents relating to the rule changes, he says people are confusing the new rules with the old ones.
‘‘ What’s happening now is people are getting the two mixed up.’’
One intersection which is causing confusion is the T-junction where Postgate Dr meets Omapere St in Whitby. Cars turning left from Spinnaker Dr on to Omapere St enter a merging lane, and need to give way to right-turning traffic from Postgate Dr, Mr Kairua says.
This seems to contradict the new give-way rule, but a dotted line separating the merging lane from Omapere St means cars on the merging lane must give way, he says.
However, cars in the merging lane do not need to sit and wait for right- turning cars on Postgate Dr to pass them on Omapere St, Mr Kairua says. If the left-turning car can safely enter Omapere St before the right-turning car has an opportunity to turn on to Omapere St, that is not a problem.
If drivers are unsure who has right of way at any intersection, they should let the other car go, Mr Kairua says.
‘‘If in doubt, leave it out. If you’re doubting who goes first, stop and let the other car go.’’
Don’t wait: Left-turning cars do not need to wait for right-turning cars if they can safely enter Omapere St first.
Give way: Left-turning cars merging from a slip lane into Omapere St must give way to traffic.