5 ignored rules of the road you must do now!

5 ignored rules of the road you must do now! Robert armstrong personal injury attorney north carolina

There’s an old saying that rules are meant to be broken, but this saying can be a dangerous one, especially when it comes to rules of the road. 

Failing to obey traffic laws can land you in big trouble— either in the form of a ticket, a severe accident, or both.

At the law offices of Robert Armstrong, located in Wilmington, North Carolina, our legal team wants to help you avoid accidents or getting any tickets by helping to remind you of traffic rules that are often forgotten. Here are 5 of the most commonly ignored rules of the road that you should start following — if you aren’t already.

  • Failing to use your turn signal 

Putting on your turn signal is crucial to do, though so many drivers tend to do so infrequently. There’s a reason you have a turn signal, and it’s not for decoration or effect. It’s to let other drivers know your next move, which is often essential information for other drivers as they, too, try to decide what their next move or direction will be, often in a split-second. 

Failure to use a turn signal can result in:

A ticket for unsafe movement. Unsafe movement can result in an increase in both your insurance and license, along with a fine. 

It can also cause another driver to run into you and cause an accident with injuries.


  • Traffic Lights 


North Carolina has specific traffic light laws that are unlike other states. 

  • For instance, one such law is North Carolina doesn’t allow motorists to make a left turn on a red arrow in a turn lane. 
  • Also, in some states, it’s illegal to enter an intersection if the light is yellow. However, in North Carolina, a solid yellow light is just a warning that the light is about to turn red. In other words, you can enter an intersection while the light is still yellow, just not after it has turned red. 
  • Red light cameras are used in North Carolina. (However, they must have signs installed indicating to motorists that it is in use.) Red light camera violations are civil offenses as opposed to traffic infractions. The fine for a red light camera ticket is $50, and $100 if the ticket is not paid on time. 
  • Following too closely 

Safety professionals suggest that you abide by a two-second rule when following any vehicle. The two-second rule means you keep far back enough that it would take you two seconds to catch up to the car in front of you if it stops suddenly. North Carolina Code Section 20-152 makes it a traffic offense to follow other motor vehicles too closely. 

You could be ticketed for this offense if you do one of the following:

  • You follow a vehicle more closely than is reasonable given the speed of other cars, traffic, and road conditions.
  • When driving on a highway other than in a business or residential district, you follow another vehicle and do not allow enough space for an overtaking vehicle to enter and occupy the area in front of your auto without danger. 
  • Staying out of the left lane except for passing 

The far left lane of most highways are to be used only for passing slow-moving vehicles. 

Unfortunately, it’s something that countless drivers forget — or choose to ignore — and it’s no fun for vehicles behind you. It can obstruct the flow of traffic and cause accidents. 

  • Texting and driving 

Texting while driving is among the most careless distracted driving infractions you can make. It only takes a couple of seconds with your eyes off the road and on your phone to cause a serious — and potentially deadly — crash. 

North Carolina State Law prohibits texting and emailing while driving. Drivers under the age of 18 with provisional licenses are prohibited from all cell phone use while behind the wheel, even hands-free. North Carolina is a “primary law” state, which means that the police can stop you and issue you a ticket solely for violating this law. It is illegal for drivers to:

  • Manually enter letters or text in a cell phone to communicate with another individual
  • Read an email or text transmitted to or stored in an electronic device

There are exceptions to this ban on texting and driving, however. The law will not apply in these situations:

  • The driver is lawfully parked or stopped
  • The person is a police officer, firefighter, or ambulance driver texting while they are performing official duties
  • The technology used is a factory-installed or after-purchase GPS
  • The person is using voice-operated technology

Learn More from Attorney Robert Armstrong 

Sometimes, accidents are unavoidable and not your fault, but you should follow these rules to decrease your chances of a crash. If you or someone you love was injured in a car accident in Wilmington, North Carolina, contact Robert Armstrong today.