The Guide to Right-of-Way Laws in Alabama

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Alabama defines “right-of-way” as the right to move across or onto a roadway before other vehicles or people. Right-of-way laws are in place to facilitate smooth, safe traffic flow, and violating them is one of the most common causes of collisions in the state of Alabama. The laws are there for your protection, so it is simply good common sense to obey them. If you do not, you are running the risk of damage to your vehicle, and injury or even death to yourself or someone else.

Summary of Alabama’s right-of-way laws

The right-of-way laws in Alabama can be summarized as follows:

  • When more than one vehicle approaches an intersection at about the same time, and there are no signals or signs, right of way belongs to the vehicle on the right. If you are speeding when you enter that intersection, you are no longer deemed to have had the right of way.

  • You must always yield the right of way to emergency vehicles (police cars, fire trucks, ambulances, etc.) when their sirens are on and their lights are flashing. If you are not in an intersection, you must pull over. If you are already in the intersection, proceed out of it and then pull over.

  • Cars that are entering from a driveway or private road must yield to vehicles on public highways or streets.

  • If you are facing a yield sign when entering an intersection, you must give the right of way to any vehicle or pedestrian that is crossing the road.

  • When you turn left into an intersection, driveway, private road or alley, any vehicle approaching from the opposite direction has the right of way if it is in the intersection, or near enough to cause danger if you do not yield.

  • When entering an intersection on a green arrow signal, you must yield to traffic that is already in the intersection.

  • Regardless of traffic signals, you must always stop and yield the right of way to a blind person who is carrying a red-tipped white cane and holding it extended, or who is walking with the assistance of a guide dog.

Common misconceptions about Alabama’s right-of-way laws

The most common misconception about right-of-way laws in Alabama is that if a pedestrian is crossing against the light, he or she does not have the right of way. The law on this is very clear in Alabama – you must always yield right of way to pedestrians, even if they are jaywalking. This is based in common sense – the pedestrian is far more vulnerable than the motor vehicle operator, and therefore always has the right of way.

Penalties for failure to yield

The penalties for failure to yield right of way can be significant:

  • You will automatically have five points added to your license.

  • Fines for failure to yield are $20 for the first offense, $195 for the second, and $215 for the third.

  • If you fail to yield to an emergency vehicle, the fines are $50 for the first offense, $195 for the second, and $245 for the third.

For further information, refer to the Alabama Driver License Manual, Chapter 6, pages 60-64.


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Michael

15 years of experience
518 reviews
Michael
15 years of experience
Mercedes-Benz GL450 - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Atlanta, Georgia
Micheal was punctual and friendly. Work was completed within promised time. Will definitely use again.
Volvo S80 - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Roswell, Georgia
Michael was SUPER QUICK with doing my brake and rotors. Great communication throughout the whole process. Will always recommend

Kenneth

19 years of experience
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Kenneth
19 years of experience
Toyota Sequoia - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Newport Beach, California
Kenneth did a great job and very knowledgeable. He has a great attitude and I will for sure be using him again.

Chuy

13 years of experience
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Chuy
13 years of experience
Honda Civic - Brake Pads Replacement (Front, Rear) - Cicero, Illinois
Excellent work on doing the breaks for my car and the break and steering system flush I’ll definitely recommend and take into consideration for chuy’s work whenever I need a fix on my car

Richard

16 years of experience
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Richard
16 years of experience
BMW 328i - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Dublin, California
Richard was an outstanding mechanic. After he arrived, the first thing he did after taking the initial pictures of the car is an assessment into what work was asked. He quickly verified that I did not need brake fluid and my front brakes even-though it affects his personal commitments and time, which I think is highly appreciate and thorough professional. He was detailed oriented - took time to make sure that all the issue are fixed. He paid attention to detail in overall car assessment- he goes above and beyond. He was also teaching me through the process which I found highly educational and appreciate him providing the information ensuring and making me comfortable what he was doing and explaining patiently all the questions that was thrown at him. When he works - you know he's highly skilled and experienced and knows his stuff. He is highly experienced. He is a "Master" mechanic in true sense :)

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