When entering a 7 lane road consisting of 3 northbound and 3 southbound lanes with one turning lane between them from a private driveway I got charged with fail to yield from private drive S139(1)
Private driveway is located 145 ft from pedestrian corossing with traffic lights.
I yielded traffic on the rodway waiting to safely enter. The lights turned red and traffic stopped. The red lights last for 35 seconds. It takes 6.3 seconds for traffic to stop and fill lanes from the lights to the driveway I was exiting from. Say after 10 seconds of waiting, I was allowed (waved) in the nearest two lanes by the drivers. Wouldn't this satisfy compliance with S139.1?
I stopped across nearest 2 lanes with the front of my vehicle sticking into lane 3 by 1.5 to 2 feet to verify whether it was safe to proceed into the third lane and make left turning maneuver into left turning (southbound) lane just across the 3rd lane. I had a clear view to my left into the third lane as far as 60 ft. At the same time the first 4 feet of my vehicle was visible to drivers in the third lane for 2nd lane is 11 ft wide and by an 8 ft wide vehicle centered in that lane there is 2 ft clear. The other 2 ft is by how much my vehicle is in 3rd lane. While checking left, there I saw a vehicle to the left in 3rd lane about 60 ft away, driving towards me. Knowing there is a red light ahead of this vehicle I estimated that vehicle was approaching at decreasing speed to stop at the lights. I decided that it was safe for me to proceed and cross 11 ft wide third lane without making it impractical for that vehicle to resume driving in 3rd lane and allow me complete my maneuver. [Regarding the time tracking 10 seconds elapsed before I started to move, than in about 3 seconds I occupied lanes 1-2, waited 2-3 seconds to assess safety of entering 3rd lane, made it to left turning lane in next 3 seconds, the lights are still red for next 15 seconds, so the collision occurred while the red light was still on.] As I started moving forward across the 3rd lane I focused my attention at the negotiating the turn into the turning lane. As the front of my vehicle just entered the turning lane, my vehicle got struck by the vehicle coming from my left in the 3rd lane. The colliding point was the very front left point of my vehicle and the very front right point of the other vehicle. The other vehicle has drifted into the turning lane.
I felt I underestimated the speed of the vehicle in the 3rd lane and thought I was at fault for the collision. There were no skid marks after any of the two vehicles. Police officer estimated the speed of my vehicle to be 10 km/h and the other to be 40 kmh. The other vehicle was ABS equipped, my was not. I took multiple photographs of both vehicles immediately. After reviewing the pictures, it occurred to me that my vehicle was in possession of the third lane and that the other vehicle had duty to yield to me. My vehicle was completely visible there across lane 3, already on the highway immediately after being waved in by drivers. I plead not guilty. The police report shows the location of the collision with the other vehicle centered in lane 3 and my vehicle just sticking out from lane 2. This is contrary to the photographs.
How is this relevant to the charge I was given "fail to yield from private drive"?
Per sketch on police report I did not have possession of the 3rd lane, while per photographs I can argue that I had possession of the third lane. While the focus is on the charge per S139.1, and the evidence the police report provides, how important it is to be able to prove that collision did not happen at the location per police report and that my vehicle could not have moved both vehicles to final location as per picture. Both vehicles are of the same mass. Other vehicle struck my vehicle per police report and in actuality. Other vehicle traveled at 40 km/h, if it moved us both it would be alongside the lane 3 rather than across. I my vehicle moved us both at a speed at 10 km/h it could have pushed us just 1.9 ft. There is still 8 ft of unexplained difference. There is no skid marks. No movement occurred. Police report is inaccurate. Is that sufficient for charges be dropped?
How relevant it would be to prove that the other vehicle was going to fast approaching red lights ahead? In order to stop at red lights 145 ft away it should decelerate and should have been at 38km/h. Officer estimated 40km/h. How accurate is his estimate. The court date is approaching.
I am defending myself. Being a student I can not afford paid legal advice neither 3 demerit point with my g1 license. I have a Civil Eng collegue who can substantiate calculations of required time to stop, safe stopping distance and the impact related movements of the vehicles.
Reading my post, can you find my defense strong enough to have charges dropped?
My driving record is pristine clean and I want to keep it that way. Thanks for answering.
I would say being waved in does not satisfy 139.1, simply because the onus is on you to ensure your actions are safe, not other drivers. Any errors on the police report would not result in the charges being dropped, but may help raise some doubt at trial if there is confusion over vehicle positioning. That being said, regardless if you were struck in the front or back, you're the one who is still legally required to yield. The vehicle that struck you had no legal obligation to yield to you if I understand your sequence of events.
Thank you for your opinion. Your opinion closely matches the one of the police officer. I absolutely understand my duty to yield right of way to the traffic on the highway. However once I was waved in and allowed onto the roadway that changes things, I think.
Now that vehicles stopped, I entered without endangering anyone. From there, again I pulled fully across the next lane and I suspect I was hit for the other vehicle did not pay attention, or did not want to brake. Aren't we as drivers having duty not to intentionally cause accidents if we can avoid them? Where there is a common courtesy?.
Shortly after the accident, I was driving home in borrowed vehicle. There was a truck backing up from a private driveway about 150 ahead of me. I slowed and stopped let him complete the maneuver.
I felt that if I continued and hit it, I would be responsible.
I may not understand the traffic law, so my thinking is clearly based on the logic of the example above. I believe my two cases are closely comparable but in reversed roles. There is this feeling of doing it right here and also believing that laws are fair and protect right actions.
Thank you for posting your comment, it made me think. My first response may mean nothing in the court by itself, but together with your comment it helped me consider the following: once I am on the roadway and have a possession then others must yield to me. If I am deemed to be entering, then I must yield. One may argue that was true for first two lanes from the curb. I complied with 139(1). The onus was on me to repeat yielding again before entering and crossing the third lane, again.
So, I checked left and saw a vehicle in the 3rd lane about 60 ft away approaching me. I estimated the speed of that vehicle to be appropriate for the conditions: two lanes to the right of it already stopped, and it was approaching red light ahead. So, I proceeded thinking it was safe to proceed without constituting an immediate hazard. I suppose and immediate hazard would be if right there collision happened, my car being hit in say front part. The fact is that I made it across the full width of the lane (11 ft) with the front of my car and entered the turning lane between the two directional lanes. My left front wheel is on the double yellow line, and the nose is over past it. I believe that the immediacy has to do something with it. As a driver in the third lane had a chance to yield me in my opinion. Unfortunately that yielding did not happen, so I am at fault?
I do not count much on the confusion about the accuracy of the sketch showing position of the vehicles contrary to the photographs. I would challenge it, for the above reasons, even if it exactly matched the photographs. Perhaps, in this case will have fewer things to argue.
Any comments are welcome and appreciated.
Reading past similar posts, there was a mention of "immediacy" as well as the arguing on "deemed to be entering the highway" vs on the highway as result of being waved. Wonder if authors of these topics can report back to you on their own results.
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