California Driver Handbook - Traffic Controls
Solid Red – A red traffic signal light means “STOP.” You can make a right turn against a red traffic signal light after you stop. Yield to pedestrians, bicyclists, and vehicles close enough to be a hazard. Make the right turn only when it is safe. Do not turn if a “NO TURN ON RED” sign is posted.
Red Arrow – A red arrow means “STOP.” Remain stopped until the green signal or green arrow appears. Do not turn against a red arrow.
Flashing Red – A flashing red traffic signal light means “STOP.” After stopping, you may proceed when it is safe. Observe the right-of-way rules.
Solid Yellow – A yellow traffic signal light means “CAUTION.” The red traffic signal light is about to appear. When you see the yellow traffic signal light, stop if you can do so safely. If you cannot stop safely, cross the intersection cautiously.
Yellow Arrow – A yellow arrow means the “protected” turning time period is ending. Be prepared to obey the next traffic signal light, which could be the green or red traffic signal light or the red arrow.
Flashing Yellow – A flashing yellow signal light warns you to "PROCEED WITH CAUTION." Slow down and be alert before entering the intersection. Yield to any pedestrians, bicyclists, or vehicles in the intersection. You do not need to stop for a flashing yellow traffic signal light.
Flashing Yellow Arrow – This traffic signal light means turns are permitted (unprotected), but you must first yield to oncoming traffic and pedestrians and then proceed with caution.
Solid Green – Give the right-of-way to any vehicle, bicyclist, or pedestrian in the intersection. A green traffic signal light means “GO.” If you are turning left, make the turn only if you have enough space to complete the turn before creating a hazard for any oncoming vehicle, bicyclist, or pedestrian. Do not enter the intersection if you cannot get completely across before the traffic signal light turns red. If you block the intersection, you can be cited.
Green Arrow – A green arrow means “GO.” You must turn in the direction the arrow is pointing after you yield to any vehicle, bicyclist, or pedestrian still in the intersection. The green arrow allows you to make a “protected” turn. Oncoming vehicles, bicyclists, and pedestrians are stopped by a red traffic signal light as long as the green arrow is lighted.
Traffic Signal Light Not Working (Blackout) – The traffic signal light is not working and/or no lights are showing on the signal. Proceed cautiously as if the intersection is controlled by “STOP” signs in all directions.