A lot of car accidents happen around flashing yellow left-turn signals. So today as part of our series on little-known or understood traffic laws in Michigan, I thought I would clarify the flashing yellow left-turn signal.
This is a relatively new signal in Michigan. It’s now being implemented nationwide and will be required at all intersections that have left turn signals. Because it’s so new, we’ve seen a number of drivers get confused by what to do, and a number of car crashes have resulted from driver confusion on what to do on a flashing yellow.
The short answer on what to do when you’re waiting to turn left is:
Be cautious, and after yielding to oncoming traffic and pedestrians, make your left turn.
If you see a solid yellow arrow, it means that you must prepare to stop, or complete your left turn if you’re in the intersection and it’s safe to do so.
Here’s a video from the Michigan Department of Transportation that quickly explains the flashing yellow left-turn signal.
Here’s more information from MDOT on the flashing yellow arrow left-turn signal.