Raised pavement markers raise left turn question

The in basket: Robbie McCabe writes, “I have a question that may keep me from getting a ticket.

“I have been going westbound on Sixth Street and turning left into Group Health’s underground parking lot for many years,” he said. “For some reason, today I noticed that there is now a double line of those caps starting just past Kitsap Bank and heading further down Sixth Street.

“Does that mean I can no longer turn left into the parking lot?”

The out basket: Those caps, called raised pavement markers or RPMs, substitute for painted lines in many places. There are two sets of them where Robbie asks about, creating the upcoming left turn lane on eastbound Sixth, adding confusion as to what is permitted around them.

Whether such lines are painted or created by the RPMs, the rules are the same. You can turn left across them, even pairs of them, unless there is a sign prohibiting that, crosshatching between the lines or a center line 18 inches or more thick.

Since none of those things exist at the Sixth Street location Robbie mentions, he can continue to turn as he has in the past. Yielding to oncoming traffic is required, of course.


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