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The Right Way To Turn Left

December 13, 2012, 5:55 PM by Perry Groten

The Right Way To Turn Left

Sioux Falls police will be out in force this weekend making sure drivers don't take a turn for the worse.

Saturday's daytime saturation will include cracking down on illegal left turns because they often lead to crashes in busy intersections.

If you're turning left at an intersection, remain in that turn lane nearest to the inside lane.  Don't make a dangerous swerve into the outer lane, that's against the law.  One illegal left turn even led to a trip to jail.

"Hopefully, everybody turns in the proper lane, which they generally do.  But on occasion, you'll get one that swings way over," Doug Flora of the Sioux Falls Police Department said.

Within seconds of stopping to watch traffic at 14th and Minnesota, Officer Flora spotted a driver taking too wide of a left turn.

"You're supposed to turn into that inside lane and once you get established, signal your lane change and move over. He just came around the corner and automatically went in there," Flora said.

A ticket for an improper left turn costs $120. But this traffic stop will cost the driver even more.

"He's revoked, out of Illinois," Flora said.

A background check showed the driver had a revoked license and no proof of insurance.

"That means you are under arrest for driving while revoked, okay," Flora said.

One wrong turn would take this driver to jail.

But it's not just a matter of staying in the proper lane. Police say you should square your turn to the left, rather than a lazy, sweeping, rounded curve into the street.

"Because if you make a rounded turn, the potential of hitting someone else that's waiting in that left turn lane in  the other direction, you could clip them," Flora said.

With plenty of preoccupied Christmas shoppers driving through intersections, a well-executed left turn is the right way to go.

Sioux Falls police say they expect to write as many as 100 extra tickets during Saturday's saturation.

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