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§ 40-6-21. Meaning of traffic signals

§ 40-6-21.  Meaning of traffic signals

   (a) The following meanings shall be given to highway traffic signal indications, except those on pedestrian signals:

   (1) Green indications shall have the following meanings:

      (A) Traffic, except pedestrians, facing a CIRCULAR GREEN signal may proceed straight through or turn right or left unless a sign at such place prohibits either such turn. Vehicular traffic turning shall yield the right of way to approaching vehicles. Vehicular traffic must stop and remain stopped to allow a pedestrian to cross the roadway within a crosswalk when the pedestrian lawfully within the intersection or an adjacent crosswalk at the time such signal is exhibited is upon the half of the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling, or when the pedestrian is approaching and is within one lane of the half of the roadway on which the vehicle is traveling or onto which it is turning. For the purposes of this subparagraph, "half of the roadway" means all traffic lanes carrying traffic in one direction of travel;

      (B) Traffic, except pedestrians, facing a GREEN ARROW signal, shown alone or in combination with another indication, may cautiously enter the intersection only to make the movement indicated by such arrow or such other movement as is permitted by other indications shown at the same time. Such vehicular traffic shall stop and remain stopped to allow a pedestrian lawfully within an adjacent crosswalk to cross the roadway within a crosswalk when the pedestrian is upon the half of the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling, or when the pedestrian is approaching and is within one lane of the half of the roadway on which the vehicle is traveling or onto which it is turning. For the purposes of this subparagraph, "half of the roadway" means all traffic lanes carrying traffic in one direction of travel. Vehicular traffic shall yield the right of way to other traffic lawfully using the intersection; and

      (C) Unless otherwise directed by a pedestrian signal, pedestrians facing any green indication, except when the sole green indication is a turn arrow, may proceed across the roadway within any marked or unmarked crosswalk;

   (2) Steady yellow indications shall have the following meanings:

      (A) Traffic, except pedestrians, facing a steady CIRCULAR YELLOW or YELLOW ARROW signal is thereby warned that the related green movement is being terminated or that a red indication will be exhibited immediately thereafter when vehicular traffic shall not enter the intersection; and

      (B) Pedestrians facing a steady CIRCULAR YELLOW or YELLOW ARROW signal, unless otherwise directed by a pedestrian signal, are thereby advised that there is insufficient time to cross the roadway before a red indication is shown, and no pedestrian shall then start to cross the roadway; and

   (3) Steady red indications shall have the following meanings:

      (A) Traffic, except pedestrians, facing a steady CIRCULAR RED signal alone shall stop at a clearly marked stop line or, if there is no stop line, before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection or, if there is no crosswalk, before entering the intersection, and shall remain standing until an indication to proceed is shown, except as provided in subparagraphs (B), (C), and (D) of this paragraph;

      (B) Vehicular traffic facing a steady CIRCULAR RED signal may cautiously enter the intersection to make a right turn after stopping as provided in subparagraph (A) of this paragraph. Such vehicular traffic shall stop and remain stopped to allow a pedestrian to cross the roadway within a crosswalk when the pedestrian is upon the half of the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling, or when the pedestrian is approaching and is within one lane of the half of the roadway on which the vehicle is traveling or onto which it is turning. For the purposes of this subparagraph, "half of the roadway" means all traffic lanes carrying traffic in one direction of travel. Vehicular traffic shall yield the right of way to other traffic lawfully using the intersection;

      (C) Traffic, except pedestrians, facing a steady CIRCULAR RED signal, after stopping as provided in subparagraph (A) of this paragraph, may make a right turn but shall stop and remain stopped for pedestrians and yield the right of way to other traffic proceeding as directed by the signal at such intersection. Such vehicular traffic shall not make a right turn against a steady CIRCULAR RED signal at any intersection where a sign is erected prohibiting such right turn;

      (D) Traffic, except pedestrians, facing a steady CIRCULAR RED signal, after stopping as provided in subparagraph (A) of this paragraph, may make a left turn from the left-hand lane of a one-way street onto a one-way street on which the traffic moves toward the driver's left but shall stop and remain stopped for pedestrians and yield the right of way to other traffic proceeding as directed by the signal at such intersection. Such vehicular traffic shall not make a left turn against a steady CIRCULAR RED signal at any intersection where a sign is erected prohibiting such left turn;

      (E) Unless otherwise directed by a pedestrian signal, pedestrians facing a steady CIRCULAR RED signal alone shall not enter the roadway;

      (F) Traffic, except pedestrians, facing a steady RED ARROW signal indication may not enter the intersection to make the movement indicated by such arrow and, unless entering the intersection to make such other movement as is permitted by other indications shown at the same time, shall stop at a clearly marked stop line or, if there is no stop line, before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection or, if there is no crosswalk, before entering the intersection, and shall remain standing until an indication to make the movement indicated by such arrow is shown; and

      (G) Unless otherwise directed by a pedestrian signal, pedestrians facing a steady RED ARROW signal indication shall not enter the roadway.

(b) In the event an official traffic-control device signal is erected and maintained at a place other than an intersection, the provisions of this Code section shall be applicable except as to those provisions which by their nature can have no application. Any stop required shall be made at a sign or marking on the pavement indicating where the stop shall be made, but, in the absence of any such sign or marking, the stop shall be made at the signal.


Shane Smith
Advocate for the Seriously Injured in Georgia