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Florida Driver Handbook: Making Turns

Study for your upcoming driver's license test or learner's permit exam with the Florida Driver Handbook.

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Florida Driver Handbook: Making Turns

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Table of Contents

5. Driving Safety

Turning a corner may seem to be a simple operation, but many traffic crashes are caused by drivers who do not turn correctly.

There are nine steps in making a good turn:

  1. Make up your mind about your turn before you get to the turning point. Turn signals are required when changing lanes. Never make "last minute" turns.
  2. If you must change lanes, look behind and to both sides to see where other vehicles are located before making your turn.
  3. Move into the correct lane as you near the intersection. The correct lane for the right turn is the lane next to the right edge of the roadway.
  4. On a two-lane road with traffic in both directions, an approach for a left turn should be made in the part of the right half of the roadway nearest the center line.
  5. Give a turn signal for at least the last 100 feet before you make your turn. Let other drivers know what you are going to do. Be sure that the drivers around you have time to see your signal before you move.
  6. Slow down to a safe turning speed. Pay attention to "no turn on red" or "stop here" when pedestrians are present/crossing.
  7. When you are slowing to make a right turn, the bicyclist you passed may be catching up to you. Search over your shoulder before turning. Yield to bicyclists and pedestrians. After checking that traffic is clear, look in the direction of travel to avoid colliding with a vehicle or pedestrian in front of you.
  8. Always scan for pedestrians before starting a left turn. Yield to pedestrians who may be crossing in your path when turning left. Only turn left when the path is clear of pedestrians, bicyclists and vehicles.
  9. Make the turn, staying in the proper lane. Yield the right-of-way to vehicles (including bicycles) coming from the opposite direction or vehicles lawfully passing on the left.
  10. Finish your turn in the proper lane. A right turn should be from the right lane into the right lane of the roadway entered. A left turn may be completed in any lane lawfully available, or safe, for the desired direction of travel. See the diagrams for making left turns from or into one-way streets.

If you reach an intersection where you wish to make a right or left turn and are not in the proper lane, you should drive to the next intersection. Then make the turn from the proper lane.