North Carolina Senate favors left-turn bill

| 6/11/2003

The North Carolina Senate tentatively approved legislation to allow drivers to turn left on red.

HB147 would apply only to drivers turning left off a one-way street onto another one-way street after first stopping for a red light. The turns would be illegal if a sign prohibited them.

Senators voted in favor of the bill 29-16 on June 5. It must survive one more vote before heading back to the House, which will consider Senate changes.

According to The Charlotte Observer, the Senate version would increase the points assessed to a driver’s record for failing to yield to a pedestrian on either a right or left turn on red, raising it from three to four points.

The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Jim Gulley, R-Matthews, told The News & Observer the change would cut emissions by reducing driving time and bring the state in line with most of the rest of the country.

Forty-four other states have some form of left-on-red laws on the books.