Archbold, OH

Police To Crack Down On Stop Bar Violations, Particularly Downtown

Archbold Village Council asked the Archbold Police Department to begin cracking down on drivers who ignore the stop bars at intersections.

Particularly, council singled out the North Defiance Street intersections of Holland and Stryker streets.

Council made the request at their Monday night, March 17 meeting.

Martin Schmidt, Archbold Police chief, said the stop bar, also referred to as a stop line, is a white stripe painted across the road at intersections. Not all Archbold intersections have stop bars.

Schmidt said when a stop bar is present, motorists must stop so the front of their vehicle is behind the white line. That does not mean the vehicle’s front tires are on or behind the line; that means the very front of the vehicle.

The stop bars are a distance back from the actual intersection to make room for semi trucks attempting to negotiate the intersection.

Schmidt said drivers wishing to make a right turn on red can still do so.

“But you must stop at the stop line, check to make sure it’s clear to proceed, then pull forward.”

The driver must then stop a second time before making a turn, to make sure the roadway and crosswalk are clear.

“If you’re making a right turn on red, you have to stop twice. You must yield to pedestrians and other vehicles that have the right-of-way,” he said.

No Reason

In a left-turn lane, Schmidt said there is no reason for a vehicle to stop beyond the stop bar, since left turns on red lights are not allowed.

Motorists might find themselves in a situation where they’re in a line of cars, attempting to make a left turn, and the traffic signal turns red after they’ve crossed the stop bar, but before they can complete their left turn.

Despite what the driver was doing, it’s a violation of traffic law.

Bottom Line

“Bottom line, people need to be able to get out of the intersection before the light turns red. If they aren’t sure they will be able to make their turn prior to the light changing, they should not proceed beyond the stop line,” Schmidt said.

What about Taylor and Nolan parkways and their intersections with South Defiance Street? There are no traffic signals there. How does the stop bar rule apply?

“The vehicle needs to stop at the stop line. The driver needs to look for vehicles wanting to make a turn towards them, and yield to them.

“Then the vehicle can proceed forward to a point where they can see traffic, and stop again to make sure it is safe to proceed,” he said.

Ohio Revised Code, section 72.099, states, “No driver shall enter an intersection… unless there is sufficient space on the other side of the intersection… to accommodate the vehicle he or she is operating, without obstructing the passage of other vehicles, pedestrians… notwithstanding any traffic control signal indication to proceed.”

Schmidt said APD officers will begin issuing warnings to motorists.

If necessary, they will begin writing tickets for stop bar violations. – David Pugh

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