Course Demonstration

Florida Basic Driver Improvement Course

Lane Positioning

The far right lane is used for entering and exiting the freeway and for slower traffic. Avoid using the right lane during rush hour traffic. This will leave room for vehicles entering and exiting the freeway.

The far left lane is used by higher speed traffic and for passing. If you are driving at a speed slower than the flow of traffic, do not drive in the far left lane, unless you are passing.

Always drive in the middle of your lane, between the lines and do not straddle lanes.

On a freeway, you may not:

  • Drive over, cross, or park on any median or divided highway separation.
  • Make a U-turn.
  • Change lanes without signaling.
  • Drive onto the freeway, except at an entrance ramp.
  • Park or stop on the freeway, except in specially provided areas – parking on the shoulder of a freeway is prohibited, except in the case of an emergency.
  • Back up on a freeway – If you miss your exit, proceed to the next exit.
Controlled Intersections

A controlled intersection may have overhead signals or posted stop or yield signs to direct drivers what to do.

Some intersections may have dedicated left and/or right turn lanes. These lanes may have special signals that apply only to those lanes. Be alert for arrow signals and follow the direction of those signals when you are in those lanes.

If an intersection is controlled by a signal and the signal is not working, there may be a police officer or traffic officer assisting with traffic control. Be sure to obey the direction of the officer. If there is no traffic control at an intersection with inoperable lights, recognize that the intersection usually has a signal light and it’s not working. Treat the intersection like a stop sign in all directions.

Sharing the Road - Pedestrians

With denser populations and public transportation, there are larger numbers of pedestrians sharing the roadway with vehicles. This creates some unique challenges for drivers in these areas. When people are walking, they are often in a hurry and will choose the shortest route. Unfortunately, pedestrians obey the rules of the road only when they think it is sensible and necessary. Taking the shortest route can mean that they do not use a pedestrian crossing or dart between parked vehicles or from in front of or behind public transportation to cross the roadway. Pedestrians may not obey traffic lights, if waiting for the green light seems to take too long.

It is the conflict between motor vehicles and pedestrians that is potentially dangerous. Typical dangerous situations for pedestrians include:

  • Drivers travelling at high speeds.
  • Drivers passing another vehicle just before a pedestrian crossing.
  • A pedestrian’s inability to accurately judge the speed of oncoming vehicles when choosing a gap in the traffic to cross the road.
  • The lack of attention or distraction from both pedestrians and drivers.
Sharing the Road - Bicycles

Motor vehicles and bicyclists share the same rights and responsibilities when it comes to use of the roadway. Bicyclists must also obey all the same traffic laws as a vehicle (F.S. §316.2065(1)). Bicyclists in the roadway must always ride on the right-hand side of the roadway, with the flow of traffic and alongside larger and faster motor vehicles.

There is also some amount of recklessness among bicyclists, especially at signalized intersections, where they are often more inclined to act upon their own perception of traffic rather than wait for a green light and when performing turning movements. Just like pedestrians, bicyclists will choose the shortest possible route to reach their destination, which sometimes leads them to use one-way streets in the wrong direction, or to ride on the sidewalks, thus creating conflicts with pedestrians. In Florida, bicyclists may ride on the sidewalk in either direction, but must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians. However, you should NEVER ride a bicycle against the flow of traffic on the road, in a bike lane, or on a sidewalk. It places bicyclists where motorists entering or leaving the roadway at driveways and intersections do not expect them to be and is a common cause of collisions between vehicles and bicycles.

Signals

Flashing red light (F.S. §316.076(1)(a)).

A driver facing a flashing red light shall stop before reaching the intersection, stop line, or crosswalk. The right-of-way at a flashing red light follows the same rules as a stop sign.

 

Flashing yellow light (F.S. §316.076(1)(b)).

A flashing yellow light means that a vehicle may proceed through the intersection or past the signal only with caution.

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