ASK A COP: You can and should turn alongside 18-wheeler

Published 11:53 pm Monday, August 10, 2015

Mel from Port Arthur asks: Officer Antoine, I can’t thank you enough for this article, because of “Ask A Cop,” I am a safer and conscientious driver. I, along with I’m sure thousands of readers, have increased our knowledge of the Texas Transportation Code because of your help! Now to my question; Officer Antoine, if I am turning left in the inside lane at an intersection and there is a 18 wheeler truck also turning left in the outside lane, am I supposed to give clearance for the big truck in my lane? The other day I was traveling down the road and I observed this very scenario, where the big truck turned and forced the smaller vehicle out of its lane. If the vehicle would have stayed in its lane, the trailer portion of the 18 wheeler would have hit the vehicle. How are we supposed to turn when next to a 18 wheeler truck?
Answer: Very good question, Mel! I feel like you, Mel, I can’t thank you and other readers enough for your continued support of this “Ask A Cop” column! Mel, when turning left next to a large truck you are allowed to turn as long as you remain in your lane. The 18 wheeler truck is supposed to turn in the outside lane ONLY! You are not supposed to alter your driving while turning left because the driver of a large truck is not turning correctly. If your vehicle is struck while you are driving in your lane because a large truck driver fails to turn in its appropriate lane, the driver of the large truck will be at fault. Keep in mind these drivers have a special license that assures Texas they have been trained to turn the large truck correctly.
Jamie from Bridge City asks: Officer Antoine, my son received a ticket from you 3 years ago. How long will that ticket stay on his driving record for insurance purposes? Our insurance rate went up and I’m on the edge of my seat anticipating it to go back down. Officer Antoine, I’m proud to say he hasn’t received another ticket since yours. P.S. My husband and I make sure he reads the “Ask A Cop” article every week, as we expected, “he enjoys the article too!”
Answer: Good question, Jamie! I’m glad to hear your son learned his lesson from the citation that was issued to him for his driving violation. Insurance companies normally look back three (3) years of anyone’s driving history to access your premium rate. The period may be stretched to five (5) years, pending the severity of the driving record. Jamie, it sounds like your son is right at the point where the citation that was issued to him will NOT be counted against him when considering his premium rate. Tell him I said to keep reading my “Ask A Cop” column and we probably won’t meet again on side of the road.
Mary from Groves asks: Officer Antoine, as I write this letter, I am still upset about this disrespectful driver in the Walmart parking lot. I turned down an aisle to park my car but someone, who just had to have a closer stall to the door, was holding up traffic which prevented vehicles from passing. Officer Antoine, I tell you that they must have followed them to their vehicle because I watched as these people loaded up the trunk of their vehicle with items that were just purchased. Vehicles started blowing at them, but they refused to move until the parked vehicle backed out of the stall and they pulled in the stall. Officer Antoine, is it some kind of law to holding up traffic like they did? That really didn’t make any sense to me. Please help me, Officer Antoine, what can be done?
Answer: Good question, Mary! In this case, Mary, I’d advise you to turn on one of your favorite CD’s that puts you into a happy place, because you will need it. There is NO law that regulates standing traffic or holding up traffic on a private drive. Sometimes while driving, you just have to activate your patience button and wait! I know we want to be where we want to be, and when we want to be there. In a perfect world, Mary, we would, but as you and I know this world is so far from perfect. So we have to adjust and adapt to situations that are out of our control. Sometimes life deals up many hurry up and wait situations. We don’t like it, but Mary, it is what it is, so next time just CHILL! At the end of the day it really wasn’t all that bad, now was it? I hope!
Join Officer Antoine for “Ask A Cop” live, on KSAP 96.9 FM, “The Breeze” radio station, every Tuesday for 1 hour from 1p-2p. Tune in and listen as Officer Antoine discusses in detail the newly released “Ask A Cop” article that printed in The News. You can also tune in via internet at Feel free to call in and ask your question live to Officer Antoine at (409) 982-0247.
Remember to email your questions to, or call 409-984-8541 and leave a voice mail question, or mail them to: Ofc. Rickey Antoine, 645 4th Street, Port Arthur, Texas, 77640. If you happen to see me in public you can “Ask A Cop”!

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