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Can I Cross a Solid Line on a Roadway?

Posted on May 10, 2022

Confusion over pavement markings can cause severe car accidents. In most cases, Pennsylvania drivers cannot cross a solid line unless it is accompanied by a broken line, which means a turn can be made.

What are the Dangers of Crossing a Solid White Line?

Other road users may not be able to anticipate your maneuver since vehicles are not supposed to cross a solid line. As a result, crossing a solid white line when it is illegal to do so can lead to a collision with another vehicle, bicyclist, or pedestrian. These unanticipated accidents can be severe, possibly resulting in injuries and expensive property damage, and medical bills. Additionally, if you are at fault for a crash because you illegally crossed a solid white line, you may be liable for another party’s damages if they suffer a serious injury. 

What is the Intended Purpose of a Solid White Line on a Roadway?

Solid white lines are used to divide lanes of traffic traveling in the same direction, may indicate a mandatory turn lane, and are also used to mark the edge of the road. White lines may also appear as broken, in wide dots, as wide solid white or a wide double line. 

  • Normal or Wide Solid White Line: When a solid white line is painted between travel lanes, vehicles should be discouraged from crossing it. Drivers are supposed to remain in their travel lane and only change if necessary to avoid an accident. 
  • Normal Broken White Line: A broken white line separates travel lanes, but drivers are permitted to cross them and change lanes. 
  • Dotted White Line:  Separates a through lane from a deceleration or acceleration lane, or becomes a mandatory exit or turn lane. 
  • Double White Line: Separates travel lanes and must not be crossed for any reason. 

What is the Intended Purpose of a Solid Yellow Line on a Roadway?

Yellow lines mark the center of a two-way road and alert drivers that traffic travels in two different directions. Similar to white lines, yellow lines can be solid, broken, solid with an accompanying broken line and a normal double yellow line. 

  • Broken Yellow Line: Marks a two-direction passing zone where vehicles traveling in either direction can cross into the other lane to pass. 
  • One Solid Yellow Line and One Broken Yellow Line: Only vehicles traveling adjacent to the broken line may cross into the other lane to pass or make a turn. 
  • Two Solid Yellow Centerlines with Broken Yellow Lines Inside: This center lane cannot be used for passing, but vehicles traveling in either direction may use it to make left turns.
  • Solid Yellow Double Line: Vehicles are prohibited from crossing a solid yellow double line to pass a vehicle. However, drivers can cross one if they are making a turn. 


Penalties for Illegally Crossing a Solid Line

Although crossing a solid white or yellow line is not always prohibited, it is off-limits in some circumstances. If a police officer pulls you over for illegally crossing a solid line, they may issue you a moving violation that can carry a fine and may also add points to your driving record. The fine amount can also increase if you are a repeat offender.