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    One of the most important things to learn as part of your driver training is what to do when you meet other traffic coming towards you on narrow roads. This page explains priorities and things to watch for.

    Priority

    When you are on a road with cars parked on the side or both sides you need to understand who has priority and who needs to give way. As a rule you should never assume priority as not everyone follows the rules, so always be prepared to give way.

    The rule is that if the parked car is blocking your side or the road and you have to cross onto the oncoming cars side of the road you give way to them. If the parked car is on their side then you have priority and they give way to you. If there are cars on both sides then nobody has priority and it is wise for you to give way as this is the only way you have full control of the situation.

    When you are progressing along a road with parked cars always have an escape route planned, just in case somebody comes from the opposite direction too fast to stop and you have to move.

    You must also take care when turning into a road, the same priority rules apply so check down the road before you turn and prepare to give way if required. Sometimes you may need to wait for the road to clear before turning into the new road.

    Remember you should NOT flash headlights or wave other cars through as this can cause confusion.

    When pulling in behind a parked car to give way, remember to stop at least a cars length back from the parked car to give the best view and stop out from the kerb so you do not give the impression you are parked.

    When you pull away or are going around a parked car check your mirrors to make sure nobody is overtaking you and then again when you pull back in.

    You do not need to signal around parked cars unless you feel somebody behind does not understand your intention or if the parked car is “live” for example has its brake lights on. It is also important to signal around buses and trucks.

    Narrow Roads and Bridges/Traffic Calming Measures

    When approaching narrow roads and bridges look for signs indicating priority or give way lines painted in the road, if nothing shows then follow the priority rules above. This is the same for hazards such as floods. But always remember never assume priority.

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