U-Turn Safety at Traffic Lights in Kuwait

This is another Public service announcement brought to you by the good people at MyBloogle.

The issue of right of way at U-turns is highly debatable.

On the one hand, most traffic safety on the roads of Kuwait iterate the fact of “Right of way to cars approaching from the Left”, this is mainly referred to at roundabouts, however people have taken it to be an absolute law which is not always the case.

Take the following example:

Done on MS Paint(don't hate me I'm old school)

Done on MS Paint
(don’t hate me I’m old school)

Driver A (left) was speeding towards the traffic light, meaning they were driving on the far left side of the road. By the time they got to the signal however, the light had turned red, and Driver A finds themselves in a very awkward situation.

Albeit being on the left, they intend to go straight. However, the farthest left lane at this traffic light, as with many on the roads of Kuwait, does not give permission to go straight. You can either go left, or take a U-turn, as is evident by the curb directly in front of you.

Driver A’s only option is to attempt to sneak back in on the right side, by cutting across.

Unfortunately, Driver B (right) next to him at the signal wishes to take a U-turn as well. Seeing as how the general atmosphere of driving in Kuwait forgoes the use of turn signals, and both A & B believe it is a moot point given that they are at the forefront of the signal, they neglect to use their turn signals.

The result? Much like the accident I saw yesterday on Soor St. involving two women, catastrophe.

Driver A shoots forward intending to go straight, Driver B shoots forward as well, turning left. The right front side of B’s car collides with the rear right side of A’s car, causing them to fishtail.

Sometimes the problem is further exacerbated when 2 cars attempt to take a U-turn with one car attempting to take a right turn, if you dodge one bullet you are lucky, but the second (Driver C) will definitely hit you.

IF you find yourself in this precarious position, use the time at the red light to indicate both with turn signals as well as non-verbal gesticulation to the driver on the right that you are wanting to go right, therefore they will not slam down the gas pedal when the light turns green.

And that is how, through effective communication, traffic accidents such as the one mentioned above can be avoided.

Driver Safely All.

August 2011 ( View complete archive page )

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