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How a 4-Way Stop Works

If you drive, then you should be familiar with 4-way stops. However, though you are likely familiar with the term, do you know how a 4-way stop properly works? In order to be a safe and reliable driver, it’s important to not only understand this traffic rule, but to also adequately execute it. To view the proper steps of the 4-way stop process, we encourage you to keep reading.

Stopping and Starting — The 4-Way Stop Rule

  1. When you approach a 4-way stop, whether it’s at a traffic light or stop sign, it’s important to slow down and come to a complete stop. You’ll want to pay attention and take notice if there are any other automobiles stopped around you or any vehicles coming up to the 4-way stop.
  2. It’s important to make sure that you have come to a complete stop within the indicated lines on the road. You can move forward if you have trouble seeing, but only after you’ve come to a complete stop. Failing to do so could result in a traffic ticket.
  3. Take a look around and see if there are any other cars at the 4-way stop. Of course, if you’re the only vehicle at the stop, then you have the right of way and are free to go. Remember this golden rule: automobiles leave the stop sign or traffic light in the same order in which they arrived at the stop. Therefore, if you arrive at a 4-way stop first, then you get to leave first. If you’re the last person to arrive at the stop, then you will have to wait until the other three cars have moved on before you can do the same.
  4. There are times when automobiles will arrive at a 4-way stop at the same time. Therefore, when this occurs, it’s important to know which vehicle has the right of way. The car that is furthest to the right is allowed to go first. Though this is the appropriate and legal method, there are still motorist who don’t always follow this rule. To avoid accidents, you may choose to wait a few seconds before moving forward. After all, just because it’s technically you're turn to go, doesn't necessarily mean the other vehicles will allow you to do so.

Good Driving Techniques

Do you have good driving techniques and constantly do your part to practice safe driving methods? Of course, you can't be held responsible for other people's actions. However, if you do your part to follow all traffic laws, you lessen your chances of being involved in or causing an accident. Specifically, it's important to know and understand how a 4-way stop properly works. The road doesn’t have to be a dangerous place. In fact, most accidents can be avoided. Stay safe out there!


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