How it works: When driving on the shoulder is legally allowed in Texas

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Texas drivers are permitted to travel on an “improved shoulder,” or a paved shoulder, in some cases if determined necessary and if it can be completed safely, according to Section 545.058 of the Texas Transportation Code.

On the right shoulder driving is permitted in order to stop, stand or park the vehicle; to accelerate before entering the travel lane; or to decelerate before a right turn. Using the right shoulder is also allowed when passing another vehicle that is slowing or stopped in the travel lane or about to turn left, or to let a faster vehicle pass.

Drivers also have the option to use the right shoulder to avoid a collision or when required to by traffic-control devices, such as construction barrels.

On the left side, driving on the shoulder is permitted in order to slow or stop a disabled vehicle that cannot reach the right shoulder, to avoid a collision or when required to do so by traffic-control devices. Police and emergency vehicles and cyclists are not subject to those rules.

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