What is a Center Left Turn Lane?

A center left turn lane is the lane in the middle of a two-way street that is painted with double yellow lines. The inner lines are broken yellow, and the outer lines are solid yellow.

The center left turn lane should only be used for the following traffic maneuvers:

  • Making a left turn or a U-turn when permitted.
  • When making a left turn from a side street or driveway, wait on the center left turn lane until it is safe to enter the regular traffic lane.

If you need to make a left turn or U-turn where there is a center left turn lane:

  • Turn on your left signal.
  • Look over your left shoulder, and also make sure that there is no oncoming traffic inside the center left turn lane.
  • When it is safe, drive inside the center left turn lane.
  • Watch out for oncoming traffic and when it is safe make the left turn or U-turn.

If you are making a left turn from a side street or driveway:

  • Turn on your left signal.
  • Look at your left and ahead, and when traffic is clear from your left side, make sure that the center left lane is also cleared, then make a left and enter the center left turn lane and wait for the traffic to clear on your right.
  • Look at your mirror and over your right shoulder and when the traffic is clear and it is safe, enter the regular traffic lane.

Below are the rules that apply to center left turn lanes:

  • You are not permitted to drive in the center left turn lane for more than 200 feet.
  • Never use the center left turn lane as an ordinary traffic lane or for passing other vehicles.
  • Do not enter the center left turn lane unless it is clear of traffic.