Memorial Service Procession Etiquette: The Dos and Don’ts


Do you know appropriate memorial service procession etiquette?

Honoring the departed and their family by attending the memorial service following a visitation is a common sign of respect. However, you may be curious about the etiquette of the procession of vehicles, whether you’re a part of it or witness one while driving. There are crucial standards of memorial procession etiquette to be aware of, so let’s dive in.

First , what is a procession?

What is a memorial service procession?

Most commonly, a burial service procession happens after a celebration  of life or memorial service. The departed are moved from a memorial service home or other memorial location  to the internment or incineration site. Loved ones follow behind, and the burial service directors will normally lead.

This tradition offers friends and family the chance to give one last farewell before burial or incineration. The procession is a tradition and dates back to old civic establishments.

Upon arrival at the memorial service, the directors might put a flag or sticker on your vehicle. This represents that you are taking part in the procession following the memorial service. Ordinarily, these identifiers will say”funeral” on them and will be put on the left-hand side of your vehicle. They may come in various varieties, butare there to show drivers that you are included in the procession and have the right-away option to proceed.

The very last vehicle will have two flags and sometimes even have the hazard lights flashing to represent the finish of the fleet line. Since we have examined how the procession functions, we should discuss appropriate memorial service procession behavior.

Memorial Etiquette for individuals

If  you are partaking in the procession as a memorial service attendee, this process might feel confusing. You might be asking yourself questions such as When do I show up? Would it be a good idea for me to turn on my hazard lights? Do I stop at red lights or stop signs? What speed would it be advisable for me to go?

These are good questions to be asking, so let’s help you answer them.

When would it be advisable for me to show up?

The vehicles are organized in the order they arrive. So the earlier you show up, the nearer you will be to the front of the procession . Even so, it is always a good idea to show up early to help guarantee the procession is orderly and timely.

The directors will likely motion to you when it is your opportunity to begin driving  the guided direction. Ensure you are driving close to the person behind you, while still offering sufficient space to move should there be a need.

What is a suitable speed from the driver’s point of view?

Processions move at a generally slow speed and can serve as   a period of reflection for friends and family.

The slow speed also allows the procession to remain together, as well as allows safety for the participating vehicles. As a best practice, processions typically have a speed of  20-30 mph on dirt roads or 50 mph on roadways. The most effective way to guarantee you are driving at a suitable speed is to float along with the procession traffic.

Would it be a good idea for me to turn my hazards on?

It is not necessary to turn your hazard lights on during a procession.

In the state of California, a memorial service procession should be coordinated by a formally-dressed harmony official, oftentimes in cruiser vehicles. Peace officials line convergences to coordinate traffic and help all vehicles in the processions safely move through traffic.

Every burial home is expected to have an appropriate number of officials to help escort the procession for coherence and security. At Seaside Memorial Service Center, for example, there is one official or escort for every ten vehicles.

Burial service procession and traffic regulations

While going to a burial service procession, you are supposed to follow standard traffic regulations . These traffic laws tend to vary from state to state, so try to check your state’s traffic regulations for  memorial service processions. However, one rule is universal: vehicles in a memorial procession need to yield and clear a path for any crisis vehicles including ambulances, squad cars, fire engines, and rescue vehicles.  Please consider the following for traffic and processions:

  1. In certain states, drivers should yield to vehicles that are in a memorial procession. the express legal arrangement guides walkers and drivers to yield to a vehicle member in a memorial service procession.
  2. You should continue to follow all standard traffic laws, such as stopping at stop signs and red lights.
  3. Approach others with respect Avoid listening to high volume music, using your cell phone, or blaring your horn.

Burial service procession manners for non-participants

If you encounter a memorial procession while driving, there is a etiquette you should follow

  1. Show Respect

Keep in mind, drivers in a burial service procession are grieving the passing of a friend or family member so it is important to be thoughtful in your interactions We understand that processions can cause traffic to slow, but we encourage you to be respectful of their circumstances. Try not to yell, blare your horn, or play loud music with the windows down near the  memorial service procession.

  1. Don’t interfere with line order of procession

It is important for vehicles in the burial service procession to stay together, so make a point to allow all vehicles to pass. Give way to the procession, regardless of whether you have a green light, and hold on until the last vehicle has passed prior to proceeding to your destination. Search for the last vehicle in the procession with two flags on its hood and hazard lights on to understand when the procession is complete

  1. Never Pass

Try not to pass a memorial service procession However, you might pass a commemoration procession on the expressway in the event that there are at least two lanes on the left side.

Arranging a burial service processions for your departed cherished one

The memorial service procession is only one piece of arranging a burial service. Arranging a memorial service can be quite overwhelming. Your burial service director can help and support you, as they have a lot of involvement arranging and carrying out burial service processions.


Other Resources that may be of Interest:


About Green Hills

We believe that every end-of-life celebration should be as unique as the person being celebrated. When you work with us, we’ll help you create a memorial that honors your loved one in a way that feels special and authentic. If you’re planning for the future, our Advance Planning advisors will help you remove the burden from your family members and organize a ceremony that allows them to gather, heal, and reminisce.

To learn more about how advanced funeral planning can protect your loved ones, find out what to do if a loved one is ill, or just say hello, contact our team today. Celebrate a life well-lived in a beautiful, serene environment.