Monday, December 20, 2010

I Yielded To the Man To the Right of Me and He Yielded It Right Back To Mine

So here was the dilemma. I was sitting at a red light in town one morning with several other cars behind me and three cars (hence for to be referred to as white, gray and black cars as ordered from the stoplight) heading in the opposite direction and a beer truck in the center turn lane. At a high rate of speed with lights flashing, a cop car comes up behind the three cars waiting at the red light heading the opposite direction as I am and just as he gets to the intersection, the light turns green. What am I supposed to do?

All of us evidently thinking the same thing chose to sit at the intersection and wait for the cop car to swerve out into the lane I wanted to head for, go around the traffic blocking his way through the intersection and let him proceed so that we could continue on our merry way. However, the cop car just sat behind the three cars in the lane in front of him with lights flashing.

The beer truck in the oncoming turn lane made the first move and turned in front of my car even though he should yield the right away to me but since I was still at a standstill wondering what to do, I guess I yielded him the right to turn by default. The white car in the three car (now four car with the cop included) string of oncoming traffic also proceeded. The cop now had a center lane clear and only two cars in front of him and me heading towards him in the far lane to contend with but still he sat there with lights flashing.

Simultaneously, I finally started through the intersection with caution as the black car immediately in front of the cop pulled off the street into a parking lot evidently assuming he had done something wrong and was getting pulled over. A split second later, the gray car in front of the black car also started to cautiously proceed through the intersection. As I made it through the intersection and picked up speed, I looked back in my side mirror to see the cop drive past the driveway the black car had turned into and nose his bumper right onto the gray car's rear bumper and finally sounded a blast from his siren. Evidently the gray car had done something illegal up the road and like a sheep herding dog, the cop car took awhile to get his prey sorted out from the rest of the herd. I don't remember this scenario in any of my driver's manuals that I studied as a youth.

Anyway, that is about as exciting as my morning commute to works gets these days.

-Song lyrics in the title of this post are from 'The Accident (Things Could Be Worse)' by John Prine


R. Sherman said...

Always a problem. I really get frustrated with people who either don't know or don't follow the yield rules. Even being nice is a problem when someone else is expecting you to follow the rules.

As for the police, in Missouri, the best bet is to sit still until the police make the first move, if you cannot pull off the road safely.


Murf said...

I've always wondered the same thing. If I was sitting at a red light when they come up behind, should I pull through when the traffic is clear so they can get on their way or what? Thankfully I have yet to be faced with that dilemma. It would be just my luck to safely go through the red light to open up the lane a bit and then get pulled over by the cop for doing so.

Vince said...

Is it not when they are flashing 'Blues and Two's' that you need to clear the way. Otherwise the cop is the same as you with regard to road traffic laws or any other law for that matter. This holds here anyhows.

Ed said...

Vince - In the state where I live, it is illegal not to give right away to emergency responders with flashing lights. You can even get in trouble if a cop has someone pulled over on the shoulder of a four lane road and you don't get in the farthest lane from their car.

sage said...

Exciting commute there Ed! Just a few weeks ago, I was pulled over for having not put my registration tag on (last January)

Bone said...

Well, I don't think anything about anything, but with my luck lately, I'd have been the one driving the gray car in this scenario.

Three Score and Ten or more said...

Lately I have been driving a car that belongs to my son. My ambition is to not get a ticket for doing something stupid in a car that is his, so he cannot run back in his mind and remember what I said and did to him when he was driving a car that belonged to me.