Smart Talk

Smart Talk is a daily, live, interactive program featuring conversations with newsmakers and experts in a variety of fields and exploring a wide range of issues and ideas, including the economy, politics, health care, education, culture, and the environment.  Smart Talk airs live every week day at 9 a.m. on WITF’s 89.5 and 93.3.

Listen to Smart Talk live online from 9-10 a.m. weekdays and at 7 p.m. (Repeat of 9 a.m. program)

Host: Scott LaMar

Radio Smart Talk: Rules of the road

Written by Scott LaMar, Smart Talk Host/Executive Producer | Nov 21, 2012 8:39 AM

Radio Smart Talk for Wednesday, November 21:

road signs 300x170.jpg

The Thanksgiving weekend is the most traveled four-day period of the year.  Families are going "over the river and through the woods" to enjoy and share their holiday dinners with loved ones.  Friday has earned a reputation as the biggest shopping day of the year, so traffic will be heavy near shopping centers and malls and even some downtowns.  Of course, in Pennsylvania, Monday is the start of the antlered deer season, so thousands of hunters will be on their way to deer camps throughout the state.

Against that backdrop, Radio Smart Talk features a discussion and mostly a question and answer session on the rules of the road.  Specifically, what's legal and what isn't?

Pennsylvania State Police Trooper and Public Information Officer Adam Reed will join us to answer questions about who has the right-of-way and maybe a few less than obvious ones as well.

Do you have a question about a traffic law in Pennsylvania?  Write it below or call 1-800-729-7532 between 9 and 10 a.m. Wednesday.

Listen to the program:


Pennsylvania State Police Trooper and Public Information Officer Adam Reed listens to a caller's question about traffic lanes on witf's Radio Smart Talk.

back to top
  • Mark img 2012-11-21 09:07

    Tailgating seems to be an increasing phenomenon, both in frequency and aggressiveness. PA has a fairly vague statute for this conduct (75 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 3310). Has the Trooper ever issued a citation for this violation? Does the state of PA keep records of violations issued for this particular violation? Is this issue even on the (sorry…) “radar” of the PA State Police?

  • Larry Usselman img 2012-11-21 09:11

    I have a question about how to handle merging traffic on a limited-access highway. My wife feels that I should slow down or move over when I see a vehicle attempting to merge onto the highway. I feel that can be dangerous and it's a better idea to maintain a constant speed. If there is no other traffic in the left lane, I will move over, but if I stay in the right lane, I keep a steady speed. Who is correct?

    (Please do not give my name on the air!)

  • Jared img 2012-11-21 09:34

    Going back to tailgating. Why is it that people get pulled over and sited for speeding and tailgating while people who cruz in the passing lane never get pulled over? It seems to me that if you drive overly defensive, driving slow or the speed limit, pulling into the cruzing lane for people merging onto the highway, etc, that you get a pass on receiving a ticket. Not fair. I drive both offensive and defensive based on what the situation requires to keep myself and other safe. I see a lot of people trying to be overly defensive and, what they think, courteous. Maybe we should require everyone to retake the drivers test every 5 or 10 years so that the rules are better understood.

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2012-11-21 09:50

    E-mail from Barb:

    "I’m a bicyclist & just want to remind folks of a few things-
    1. Bicycles are vehicles & are expected to travel like other vehicles on the road. (slow vehicles should keep as far right as is reasonable).
    2. There is a new law requiring motorists to allow 4’ when passing a bicycle. (Could this law be posted on some of those lighted signs so more people are aware?)
    3. As a matter of common sense- don’t pass when there’s oncoming traffic, blind curves or crests of hills, or double yellow line."

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2012-11-21 09:51

    E-mail from Steve:

    "I drive the Rt 30 raceway between York & Lancaster several times a week and rarely see a police car. This highway is out of control with speeders and aggressive drivers. Just wondering why there isn't more attention to major highways like Rt. 30, 83, etc.

    I know he will say there isn't enough money, but they could easily afford more police with the added fines.

    PS. I also wonder about the commercial vehicles with names and phone numbers in plain view - isn't bad driving detrimental to their businesses?"

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2012-11-21 09:52

    E-mail from Jon:

    "Must a driver yield right of way if staying on an entry ramp to exit at the very next exit? Example: in Harrisburg, entry ramp to 83N from Front Street and immediately exit 13th Street."

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2012-11-21 09:53

    E-mail from Shelley:

    "I was taught in driving school that when you're on a 3 lane highway, such as the turnpike, that left lane was for passing and right was for slower vehicles, middle lane was okay for staying in. I had a trooper flash his lights and indicate for me to get into right lane. What is law on middle lanes?"

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2012-11-21 09:53

    E-mail from Meghann:

    "I was wondering what is the safest way to pull over if a trooper is pulling me over? Should I go to the closest exit on the highway and exit?"

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2012-11-21 09:54

    E-mail from Jim:

    "I understand that the general rule is that you CAN turn right on red, as long as there is no "No Turn On Red" sign and you exercise normal precautions. But, what about when there is a special light for right turns. If THAT light is red, can you turn right when it is red, as long as there is no "No Turn On Red" sign and you exercise normal precautions."

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2012-11-21 09:55

    E-mail from Jim:

    "Is farm equipment - i.e. a manure spreader - which does not have a license plate, permitted to travel on state roads? My daughter had an incident with one on Rte 743 near Elizabethtown. Must the operator of the manure spreader indicate turns - especially left turns? The machine did not have electric turn signals."

  • Radio Smart Talk img 2012-11-21 09:56

    E-mail from Roger:

    "If an intersection is controlled with a combination of a red light and a green turn arrow, both illuminated at the same time, do you have to stop before continuing through the turn?"