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Washington's first 'J-Turn' opens Tuesday at Hwy 195 and Thorpe

The Washington Department of Transportation constructed a “J-Turn” at the intersection. Crews have been working on it since May 13.

SPOKANE, Wash. — A new traffic pattern opened Tuesday on Highway 195 at Thorpe Road.

The Washington Department of Transportation constructed a “J-Turn” at the intersection. Crews have been working on it since May 13.

Here's how a "J-Turn" works: The new pattern blocks the median and forces drivers to turn right. Drivers will no longer drive into the median while crossing highway traffic to get to the opposing side. Now, drivers will turn right onto north or south on Highway 195, merge into the far-left lane, and then make a U-turn in the direction they want to travel, thus making a J-turn.

RELATED: Construction begins on 'J-Turn' at dangerous Highway 195 intersection

WSDOT said the intersection at Highway 195 and Thorpe is a priority for the department and the J-Turn will reduce the chance of collision at the intersection. 

Spokane is the first city in the state to use the J-turn pattern. If this works, there could be more installed in other areas.