Is It Illegal To Change Lanes In An Intersection in Arkansas?

Our research did not reveal any laws which expressly prohibited intersection lanes changes, but we did see one that prohibited unsafe lane changes.

In the article that follows, you’ll learn more about changing lanes in an intersection in Arkansas.

Is It Illegal To Change Lanes In An Intersection In Arkansas? (EXPLAINED)


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Where Are The Laws That I Can Look To In Order To Confirm Whether Lane Changes In An Intersection In This State Are Legal/Illegal?

We did a search of the Arkansas Transportation Code and were unable to find a law that specifically prohibits drivers from changing lanes in an intersection.

However, we do see a law that specifically states:

A vehicle shall be driven as nearly as practicable entirely within a single lane and shall not be moved from such lane until the driver has first ascertained that such movement can be made with safety…

27-51-302. Driving on roadways laned for traffic.

Though the law doesn’t expressly prohibit the conduct, one could see how easily a person could get a ticket for violating this section while changing lanes in an intersection.

The remainder of the Arkansas traffic code is located here and you can check for yourself.

Why Do Some States Make Lane Changes In The Intersection Illegal?

Intersections are dangerous.

Serious accidents happen daily in intersections.

And, we will point out, it is rare to find an actual state statute that prohibits drivers from making lane changes in intersections.

Instead, most states have laws that prohibit unsafe lane changes.

This broad statute gives traffic enforcement broad authority to issue tickets to drivers when they leave their lane of travel, especially if the change happens in an intersection.

What Will Happen To Me If I Change Lanes In An Intersection?

Maybe something, maybe nothing.

Who knows? it depends on the circumstances of the action.

For example, if you made a lane change in an intersection and the action was done cautiously, without putting life or property in danger, a police officer might do nothing.

But if your actions resulted in a car accident (big or small), you might face a traffic ticket.

If the driving produced a big accident where significant property damage or injuries occurred, you could face criminal charges.

This is especially the case if you were distracted by a cell phone or hand held device, under the influence of intoxicating substances, street racing, or otherwise driving in a reckless manner.

If you think you could be charged with a crime for your driving, most lawyers would recommend that you contact an Arkansas criminal defense lawyer before you do anything else, including talking to your car accident insurance representative.

The criminal defense lawyer can guide you and advise you through the insurance process so you can reduce the likelihood of making recorded statements to your insurer that could be used against you in the criminal case.

Wrap Up

In general, changing lanes in an intersection (or even as you approach the intersection) is not considered to be safe or recommended.

If you want more information or advice about driving laws in Arkansas, we recommend that you review the Arkansas specific traffic code or speak to an Arkansas attorney to get that advice.

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Is It Illegal To Change Lanes In An Intersection in Arkansas