Ask Phoebe
Phoebe Falconer answers your questions about Auckland

Ask Phoebe: New road rules give no room for doubt

By Phoebe Falconer

Photo / Thinkstock
Photo / Thinkstock

Would you please clarify the situation when what appears to be an uncontrolled T-intersection is not a T-intersection? Seaview Rd in Castor Bay, Auckland does not terminate but just takes a sharp left-hand turn and continues up the hill. The downhill side of the intersection, Marama St, appears to be part of the continuing major road, when in fact it terminates at that intersection, although there are no give way signs. Who has right of way, both uphill and downhill, and in which direction, in this situation? Fiona Downes.

I've looked at the street map, and it's a funny one. However, the new rules are quite clear. Because Marama St is the terminating road, all traffic on Marama must give way to vehicles on the continuing road, ie, Seaview Rd.

Who gives way at an intersection controlled by lights where right-turning traffic has a green arrow but the left-turning traffic has a free left turn, as is the case at the intersections of Richardson Rd/White Swan Rd, and St Lukes Rd/Morningside Drive? Right-turning traffic must have right of way because it has a green arrow but the free left-turning traffic under the new rule has right of way.

Mark Rowe.

The Transport Agency website states that if all other give way rules (or signs or signals) do not determine who gives way, give way to vehicles coming from your right. Thus traffic with a free left turn must wait for right-turning vehicles with a green arrow.

Two cars are at a controlled intersection, both with give way signs, facing each other, and both want to turn right. Who gives way to whom? Shirley Nicol.

Neither vehicle should have to give way, because normally neither vehicle will cross the other's path. However, if one of the vehicles is a large truck or bus, care will be needed because they may need extra room to turn. Also, be aware of vehicles coming towards you and going straight through the intersection because they may be blocked from view by the turning vehicle.

A hypothetical query: At an uncontrolled crossroads, you have motorists approaching from each of the four directions, each wanting to turn right. Who gives way? Ron Mair.

The Transport Agency website says such intersections do not or should not exist. However, the rule is still to give way to the vehicle on your right, and care must prevail, because each motorist will have someone to his right.


Auckland transport has an interactive learning tool for drivers to bone up on the new rules. Go to

- NZ Herald

Your views

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter


Have your say

1200 characters left

By and large our readers' comments are respectful and courteous. We're sure you'll fit in well.
View commenting guidelines.

Sort by
  • Oldest

© Copyright 2017, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production apcf03 at 29 Mar 2017 20:33:35 Processing Time: 464ms