BRIEF: Four drivers stuck on four-way stop intersection at Saddleback College campus

Saddleback four-way stop intersection scientifically proven to be confusing to some licensed drivers

The Director of the California Department of Motor Vehicles, Jean Shiomotorhead, visited Saddleback College on March 26 to inspect the campus’ compliance in uncomplicated stop sign intersections. He observed four drivers stuck at the college drive entrance on Medical Center Road and Marguerite Parkway for more than 13 minutes. After a day of observation, that specific intersection was marked as scientifically confusing and complicated for licensed drivers.

Shiomotorhead used the four rules of four-way stop intersections to arrive at his scientific conclusion. He explains that the appearance of multiple bushes and foliage on the intersection at Medical Center Road and Marguerite Parkway make it difficult to know what vehicle approached the stop sign intersection first. Within his report, Shiomotorhead advises Saddleback College to commence the construction of a less confusing intersection.

“Besides building a less confusing intersection, the college needs to create resources and seminars that focus on the four rules of four-way stop intersections,” said Shiomotorhead. “These seminars need to teach drivers the difference between their right and left sides, as well as that using a turn signal is essential to driving.”

Shiomotorhead and the Calfornia DMV have funded development towards a mobile app which will allow drivers to assess if they have the right of way at a stop sign intersection. Their app development team estimates that the application will be ready for human trials in the summer of 2020.