The flow of traffic in major cities like Las Vegas is controlled in two ways. The first is traffic signs and signals, which direct where and when traffic may proceed. Stop signs, yield signs, and directional signs help drivers travel in a safe and orderly manner. Traffic lights accomplish the same goals, only electronically.
The other way municipal authorities control traffic flow is through right-of-way (RoW) laws. In Las Vegas, these laws are part of the Nevada Revised Statutes and govern traffic movement whenever a sign or signal is not present. All Nevada drivers are presumed to know these RoW laws and to follow them wherever applicable.
Specific Nevada Right-of-Way Laws
Nevada’s laws regulating the right of way generally begin in Chapter 484B.250 of the Nevada Revised Statutes, with other RoW laws scattered elsewhere throughout the chapter. Some of the most commonly encountered RoW laws include:
Right-of-Way Laws at Intersections
If you approach an intersection and there is already a vehicle in the intersection, that vehicle has the right of way. If you and another vehicle arrive at an intersection at the same time, the vehicle to your right has the right of way. If two vehicles approach a T-intersection at the same time, the vehicle proceeding on the through street goes first.
Right-of-Way Laws Involving Turns and Crosswalks
If you’re turning left, you must yield the right of way to vehicles traveling in the opposite direction. However, once you begin your left turn, oncoming vehicles must yield the right of way to you.
Additionally, if you approach a crosswalk and there’s a pedestrian in the walk, you must yield the right of way to the person on foot.
They have the right of way so long as they’re on the same side of the street as the lane you’re traveling in. However, pedestrians who cross at places other than crosswalks must generally yield the right of way to motor vehicle traffic.
Right-of-Way Laws for Vehicles Exiting Private Drives
If you’re leaving a private drive or private property and looking to enter a public road, you must yield the right of way to all oncoming traffic on the public road.
This rule also applies to traffic entering roads from private drives or business parking lots and vehicles entering from other private areas. You’re permitted to proceed only when it’s clear and safe.
Right-of-Way Laws and Emergency Vehicles
Any emergency vehicle traveling on any road or highway always has the right of way.
This rule is to be followed even in situations where you would otherwise have the right of way. For example, an emergency vehicle turning left at an intersection would have the right of way even if you were approaching the intersection and intending to proceed straight through.
Right-of-way regulations require you to do more than simply yield to emergency vehicles — you must pull your vehicle over to the right side of the roadway and stop until the emergency vehicle has passed or is otherwise out of your path of travel.
You’re only obligated to yield the right of way in this manner to authorized emergency vehicles using flashing lights. If a vehicle isn’t displaying flashing lights in accordance with statutes, the previously described right-of-way rules don’t apply.
Why Nevada Right-of-Way Laws Are Important
The observance of right-of-way laws doesn’t just ensure that traffic moves in a smooth, orderly, and predictable manner. It also reduces the risk of car accidents, which could potentially injure you or your passengers.
Of course, avoiding collisions requires all drivers to be familiar with these laws and general rules of the road. As such, it’s recommended that all Nevada drivers brush up on the right-of-way laws governing the use of various roadways in their state.
Contact the Las Vegas Car Accident Attorneys at Battle Born Injury Lawyers Today
If you or a loved one were injured in an accident in Las Vegas and you need legal assistance, contact our car accident attorneys at Battle Born Injury Lawyers and schedule a free consultation with our legal team.