Recently, I was at an intersection that crossed busy Route 302 in Windham, Maine. I was turning left, and the car on the other side of 302 was going straight, but was waving me through. I refused for a good reason.

You should remember from your driver's education manual about the right of way on the road. Maine's rules of the road explain what to do in the situation I was in:

An operator of a vehicle who intends to turn left must yield the right-of-way to a vehicle approaching from the opposite direction when the approaching vehicle is within the intersection or so close as to constitute an immediate hazard.

So as I'm turning left, the driver on the other side of the road is going straight. They tried waving me through twice, and I motioned to them to go, as they had the right of way. Any vehicle turning left at an intersection has to cross traffic coming from the left, right, and front. It's much safer for me to let the person going straight make their move before I do.

Accidents can occur in situations when people wave someone through when they don't have the right of way. It's especially prominent for people pulling into multi-lane roads. Watch what happens when someone in traffic stops to wave someone through who is taking a left.

Here's why I don't wave people through.
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Granted, the driver who t-boned the person should not have been there, but now, both drivers could be at fault for this accident.

Allen & Allen Attorneys explains what could legally happen is there's an accident and someone is waved through.

Although waving another driver in front of you seems like a nice thing to do, you do not want your well-intentioned actions to lead to an accident. The proper procedure is for all drivers to take responsibility for their own safety and the safety of others by thoroughly assessing the situation before entering traffic, regardless of another driver’s gesture.

If you’re wondering, “Can I be successfully sued for waving a car in front of me?” The answer is yes, possibly. Our recommendation is don’t wave them in.

So to be on the safe side of things and to make sure I don't cause an accident and get sued, I will always wait at the intersection until it's my turn.

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