My question concerns the order in which traffic proceeds at a 4-way stop. Our town has very few traffic lights, but quite a few intersections with stop signs. Quite often, in mornings and evenings, and over the weekend, traffic backs up so that 2 or more cars are lined up coming from all directions, waiting to take turns and go.
I thought I knew the “proper” order in which traffic was to proceed in such instances. The Illinois traffic laws say that when more than one driver reach such an intersection, the first driver to stop should be the first to go. When 2 vehicles on different roadways arrive at the same time, the car on the left should yield to the car on the right.
So if I am approaching such an intersection, I know that once the car directly in front of me clears the intersection, the 3 other cars coming from the other 3 directions all have right of way before me. BUT - and this is the part folks in my town apparently find tricky - none of the cars BEHIND those other 3 (in the second row as it were) get to go ahead of me. This holds true whatever maneuvers the fronnt-row cars are making - straighht, left or right turn. As a second row moves up to the stop sign, any car already stopped coming from another direction has the right of way over them.
What often occurs is, when I get to the intersection, I will wait for the other 3 cars already there to take turns clearing, and then when I am getting ready to go, one of the cars that pulled up while I was already waiting tries to sneak ahead of me.
I admit this is a very minor matter, and it doesn’t really upset me. In fact, it is so common, that I expect it. And I let them go without honking or otherwise showing any displeasure. But speaking with friends, I was surprised to hear folk say there were no rules for who had right of way in such situations. Everyone just goes when they have the opportunity to.
I was wondering if you folk had opinions as to whether there were any “rules/practices” that governed such situations. Or if you had opinions as to rules that differ from the interpretation I present above.
I apologise for my lack of coding skills that prevent me from drawing a simple diagram. If someone interested in this discussion were able to draw a simple diagram of an intersection with numbers 1 thru 4 representing the first row of cars, and 5 thru 8 in the second row - we could refer to that.