Explaining Virginia’s Right-Of-Way Rules
All vehicles must follow Virginia’s right-of-way rules to safely cross intersections. Right-of-way helps you decide who goes first at an intersection. Right-of-way rules, together with courtesy and common sense, help to promote traffic safety.
Vehicles often come into conflict with other vehicles and pedestrians because their intended courses of travel intersect, and thus interfere with each other’s routes. The general principle that establishes who has the right to go first is called “right of way.”
Virginia's right-of-way rules are governed by signs
Virginia’s Right-of-Way Rules at a Stop Sign
At an intersection controlled by a stop sign, slow down and prepare to stop at a clearly marked stop line. If there is no clearly marked stop line, stop before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection.
In the absence of a marked crosswalk, stop at the point nearest the intersecting roadway where you have a clear view of any approaching vehicles on the intersecting roadway. Before proceeding through the intersection, you must yield the right-of-way to any cars approaching from either direction.
Virginia’s Right-of-Way Rules at a Yield Sign.
At an intersection where a “Yield Right-of-Way” sign is posted, you must slow down to a speed that’s reasonable for the existing conditions. After slowing, you must yield the right-of-way to vehicles approaching or entering the intersection.
If you must stop at the intersection, stop at a clearly marked stop line or yield line. If there is no stop line or yield line, stop before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection where you have a clear view of any approaching vehicles on the intersecting roadway and yield the right-of-way to cars approaching from either direction.
Virginia’s Right-of-Way Rules at an Uncontrolled Intersection
At an intersection without a stop sign or yield sign, slow down and prepare to stop. Generally, right-of-way is determined by order of arrival at the intersection. Always yield to the car that arrives first.
While you are not required to come to a complete stop, you must yield to vehicles already in the intersection. If you and another car arrive at the intersection at the same time, yield if the car is on your right.
Virginia law does not give the right-of-way to a particular driver. It only states who must yield. When a driver is legally required to yield the right-of-way but fails to do so, other drivers are required to stop or yield as necessary for safety. So, if another driver does not yield to you when he or she should forget it. Let the other driver go first.
Many crashes in Virginia are caused by a failure to yield. If you were injured by a driver who failed to yield, please call our Virginia car wreck injury lawyers at (757) 455-0077