A Conversation for Traffic Lights in the UK

I didn't quite get that bit about 'left on red'.

Post 1

TRiG (Ireland) A dog, so bade in office

"It is interesting to note that the UK is one of only a few countries to not to have a 'left on red' rule, where cars are allowed to pass through a red light if it is safe to turn left; red lights and filter lights must always be obeyed."

It's late. I'm tired. And quite possibly I'm being stupid. But I think you've contradicted yourself there.

You seem to be saying that you can turn left on a red light if it is safe to do so. If that's true, I've never heard it before, but as I don't drive and don't live in the U.K. that's hardly surprising. And then you say that red lights must always be obeyed. Do you mean that they must be obeyed in all other circumstances? Or what?

TRiG.smiley - smiley


I didn't quite get that bit about 'left on red'.

Post 2

Gnomon - time to move on

He says that the UK does NOT have a left on red rule. This means that you are not allowed to turn left when the light is red. Most countries DO allow you to do this.


I didn't quite get that bit about 'left on red'.

Post 3

KateBygrave

You don't say which country you are from; but don't forget in the UK, we drive on the left. So if you are from a country that drives on the right then the rule translates to 'right on red'.


I didn't quite get that bit about 'left on red'.

Post 4

Gavin Orr

I firmly believe the "turn on red" rule is one of the silliest things invented, and particularly dangerous to pedestrians. The idea seems to be "Now that we have designed a system to control the flow of cars and pedestrians which reduces the likelyhood of one hitting the other, let's allow car drivers to make a decision whether to stop or go, while at the same time telling people on foot it is safe to cross".

Here in Australia there is no default "left on red" but some junctions have a sign which permits this. However I have seen junctions where they have taken this lunacy one stage further and have Green right turn filters and AT THE SAME TIME a "green man" for pedestrians to cross the junction on the right.

Wouldn't it be nice to have junction control which never gave you (as a driver or a pedestrian) a red light if there was no other traffic at the junction and managed the flow of pedestrians and cars at all times so as to minimise the risk of accidents


I didn't quite get that bit about 'left on red'.

Post 5

TRiG (Ireland) A dog, so bade in office

Just found this conversation. I'd lost it. Your explanation makes sense, Gnomon, as does the article. I was tired when I read it before, as I said.

TRiG.smiley - ok


I didn't quite get that bit about 'left on red'.

Post 6

Gnomon - time to move on

Trig's initial confusion was probably caused by the ungrammatical phrase "to not to have". I've changed it to "not to have".


I didn't quite get that bit about 'left on red'.

Post 7

TRiG (Ireland) A dog, so bade in office

In Paris, they have a sign "Priorité Pietons", meaning, roughly, "Priority to pedestrians". So you can turn left, but don't be surprised to see walkers in the road, and be ready to stop.

This is initially quite disconcerting to unsuspecting pedestrians, but it's okay once you get used to it. I actually found the Parisian drivers very law-abiding and predictable. Agressive, perhaps, but that was expected.

If you try to cross the road without a proper pedestrian crossing or against the lights, they may not actually mow you down but they certainly make it clear that they'd like to, but if you have right of way you're given it without demur.

The contrsast with Dublin is startling!

TRiG.smiley - smiley


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I didn't quite get that bit about 'left on red'.

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