Three-point turn

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Not to be confused with 3 turn.
Performing a three-point turn (shown for right-hand traffic)

The three-point turn is the formal name in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and in many regions of the United States,[1][2][3][4][5][6] and the informal name in the UK and Ireland, for a driving manoeuvre commonly required in the practical part of driving tests. In the UK and Ireland the formal name is turning in the road (using forward and reverse gears). This is because an acceptable so-called "three point turn" may include more than three points.[7]

The three-point turn is a method of reversing the direction of a vehicle when the road is too narrow for a U-turn. The basic manoeuvre consists of driving across the road turning towards the offside kerb, reversing across the road to the original nearside kerb while turning, and driving forward towards the original offside kerb, now the nearside.[2] In a narrow road or with a longer vehicle the process may have to be repeated.

The three-point turn is also known as the Y-turn, K-turn,[8] and broken U-turn.[9] The Y-turn is the official name in the state of Wisconsin.[10]


  1. ^ vicroads 2012.
  2. ^ a b MTO 2009.
  3. ^ NZTA Road Code:
  4. ^ New York State Department of Motor Vehicles. "Driver's Manual - Chapter 5". October 2011. Retrieved on July 20, 2013.
  5. ^ Arizona Department of Transportation. "Non-Commercial Driver License Examiner Manual". April 1, 2010, pp. 22-24. Retrieved on July 20, 2013.
  6. ^ North Carolina Department of Transportation. "North Carolina Driver's Handbook". January 2012, p. 9. Retrieved on July 20, 2013.
  7. ^ DfT 1991, p. 212.
  8. ^ Moore, Greg. "School district sued over fatal crash" (News release). Idaho Transportation Department, October 5, 2011. Retrieved on July 20, 2013.
  9. ^ Mallozzi, Vincent M. "Now, Don't Hit That Cone". New York Times, September 11, 2005. Retrieved on July 20, 2013.
  10. ^ wiscroads 2012.


Further reading[edit]