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August 25th, 2003

Funeral Processions

I thought that everybody was taught about funeral processions in driver’s ed. If you see a stream of cars with flags driving with their lights on, occasionally honking the horn and driving through red lights, you can be pretty sure you’re looking at a funeral procession. Common sense says you let the stream of cars go, and continue on your way after they’ve passed. It’s the way it is.

But in the last two funeral processions I’ve been a part of, the car I’ve been riding in was almost sideswiped by idiots who apparently have no clue what a funeral procession looks like. During the most recent one, a woman (on a cell phone, of course) came barreling through a light despite the fact everyone was stopped, despite the fact the cars going through the red light had their lights on and a flag on their car, and despite the fact there was a myriad honking going on to alert drivers of the procession. She came within about three feet of causing an accident and she didn’t even flinch. She just kept right on talking and driving.

Are that many people really clueless about what to do when they see a funeral procession?

Posted in Cars

Robert Davis January 3, 2007, 7:56 pm

I agree with the LAW in SC, you are not to pass a blue light escorted funeral Procession on roads and streets, on the otherhand, the the traffic in the opposite lane should not stop. That is against the law (impeding traffic). If you drive, it is your responcibility to know the laws, read up and act accordingly.

Bill May 15, 2007, 9:14 pm

I find it interesting that so many personal attacks were made by a persons advocating unconditional respect. Second, without statutory and common law what right does any person have to judge the righteousness of another persons actions. Outside of our laws we have a social compact to be cordial in our daily affairs. By no means should any person knowingly confront a funeral procession in a dangerous manner for the sake of getting to work on time. However, by no means should anyone attached to a funeral procession, or otherwise, acost a person for offending their own views regarding respect. Both persons are equally in the wrong. They both create more victims.

Mith August 25, 2007, 5:40 pm

I don’t remember ever learning about funerals in drivers Ed. Hell I’ve actually havn’t been to a funeral. The big problem that I ran into was that these guys were all honking horns. Not just the people in the funeral, EVERYBODY. So I didn’t know if they were rushing me to make the left turn or what the hell was going on.

So I decide to just go ahead and make the left, but to be very careful, and I end up stranded on the intersection..

Well, guess I know better now when I run into another funeral procession mid-traffic.. which will be perhaps sometime within the next 20 years of my life??

BC December 5, 2007, 5:49 pm

To all of you that have had a funeral procession broken by a vehicle, I apologize. I was the one who did that today. I’m sorry. I did not mean to upset people in the procession. It was a busy intersection with many cars, the weather was wet/snowy so all vehicles had their lights on (not just the procession vehicles), none of the vehicles had a flag or banner, and I did not see the lead procession vehicle. When the light turned green, I proceeded through the intersection, not realizing I was breaking the line. After a procession line vehicle sped past me almost causing an accident, I realized what was going on and pulled over. Please do not shoot arrows at everyone who breaks the line…in some situations it just might not be that obvious what is happening. But, still, I feel badly and apologize. Your grief is enough to deal with and you don’t need someone getting in your way.

Lol Funeral July 14, 2008, 5:38 pm

Lol, Funeral processions don’t deserve right of way.

Chris November 15, 2008, 6:59 pm

So i live in Texas, and can’t find any laws on funeral procession’s, but get this, I was assaulted today by a procession lol.

I was coming from colleg getting on the interstate, there was a diesel behind me flooring it, and a bunch of campers in the slow lane, so i got into the fast lane, noticed all the flashing lights, but figured who takes that many campers to a funeral? so i thought it was just a group of happy campers trying to stick together in the SLOW lane, to top it off, I couldn’t see the lead police car. The diesel wasn’t letting off so I kept driving in the fast lane, about half way through i realized it was a funeral, and about that time one of the cars in the procession cut me off and tried to knock my car into the divider, with a diesel behind me and someone on my right trying to kill me i sped up to pass him, then another one cut out and hit his brakes, ON THE INTERSTATE, going like 70, i had no choice but slide my car right into the line of the procession, and then they boxed me in and made me take the same exit as them, at the exit they all forced me to drive into the ditch, and then jumped out of there vehicles and started trying to pull me out of my car lol. I understood they were grieving so i just locked the door, smiled and waved, and waited till they gave up and got back in there cars, i called the police and they said, i had no reason to pull over on the interstate even if i knew from the start that it was a funeral. pulling over on the interstate or even going slow for that matter is dangerous and against the law.

Respect is one thing, and being pissed off that someone failed to respect you is one thing, but trying to kill someone so that they will be the one escorted in a hearse next time, is another. I’m sorry but they disrespected themselves.

rw January 24, 2009, 11:20 pm

I live in Tx and was just minding my business driving home whenI noticed some flashing lights on the opposite lanes. I then noticed cars on my side pulling over. This was a 60 MPH busy four lane road and the police escort was making everyone even opposite side traffic pull over. I can understand the side that the funeral procession is driving on but why the opposite side traffic also? I could not find any TX state law that addresses funeral processions.

Tracey June 23, 2009, 4:51 pm

This is a burning issue for me. Two days ago, I pulled over to the side of the road to give respect to a passin procession. So many people failed to do so. It burns me to see this. Be respectful people!
As to the lights on the funeral coach ro lead car and/or flags. Here in Texas the past few funerals I have attended did not give out little flags for a car, but that is an awesome idea. As for passing through intersections and red lights, we usually have several policemen escorting and always block these for the drivers in the procession.
While funeral vehicles cannot use red or blue lights (those are only for emergency vehicles) purple lights should be adopted for the lead car as purple is not used for anything here in the U.S. Purple though may be hard to spot. I feel there should also be a funeral car at the end of the procession with some type of marker to let other drivers not involved know the procession has ended.
I am saddened to see more and more people though not pulling over out of respect for the deceased, family and friends during processions in general anymore.

M August 29, 2009, 9:40 pm

No disrespect intended, but I fail to see why drivers traveling the opposite direction of a funeral procession are expected to pull to the right and stop. To begin with, there is no impedence to the funeral procession, as the other cars are traveling to the right and not blocking the procession. Secondly, this is not an emergency situation, where some vehicle may need to use the center lane.

jlc July 1, 2012, 12:44 pm

if it not a law to yeild right of way to a funneral in texas then don’t expect me too. By the way it against the law in AMERICA to press your religious standards on others! so if you don’t like it, move!

Ryan July 2, 2012, 8:35 am

Wow. You’re kind of an ass, no?

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