Intersections serve as vital junctures in our road network that allow for the smooth flow of traffic and the safe passage of pedestrians. However, car accidents occur at intersections all the time and continue to be a pressing issue, leading to injuries and fatalities.
That's why our accident attorneys are here to explain some of the common causes of intersection crashes. We here at Demesmin and Dover believe it is our job to work towards implementing effective measures to enhance safety. Join us as we delve into this intersection conundrum and shed light on why accidents occur at these critical points on our roads.
Some contributing factors to motor vehicle accidents at intersections
Factor #1: Increasing Traffic Volume
One of the primary factors contributing to the rise in intersection accidents is the increasing volume of traffic on our roads. As urbanization continues and populations grow, roads become more congested, leading to a higher likelihood of intersection collision. Recent studies have shown that traffic congestion is a significant contributor to car accidents overall.
According to statistics, in 2021, intersection-related accidents accounted for approximately 40% of all traffic collisions in urban areas. Moreover, over the past five years, intersection accidents have witnessed a staggering 15% increase nationwide.
When a collision occurs at an intersection it can be for numerous reasons such as running a traffic light, heavy traffic, not having your turn signal, having an obstructed view, etc. All of these actions contribute to making dangerous intersections. It is important that even if there is a lot of traffic you pay close attention to other vehicles' actions and drive aggressively in order to prevent accidents.
Why does increased traffic volume lead to more accidents at AN intersection?
Increased traffic volume means more vehicles converging at intersections, which can lead to congestion and delays. Drivers may become impatient, resulting in reckless behaviors such as running red lights or failing to yield the right-of-way. The higher number of vehicles also increases the chances of collisions when drivers misjudge gaps in traffic or fail to anticipate the actions of other drivers.
Factor #2: Distracted Driving
A significant concern and a leading cause of accidents at intersections is driving distracted. With the proliferation of smartphones and in-vehicle technologies, drivers' attention is increasingly diverted, leading to an increased risk of accidents.
Statistics reveal that 25% of intersection accidents occur due to actions such as texting while driving, which makes it six times more likely to be in an accident when those numbers were compared to driving under the influence of alcohol.
What constitutes distracted driving at an intersection?
Activities such as texting, talking on the phone, eating, adjusting the radio or GPS, grooming, or engaging with in-vehicle technologies. Anything that diverts the driver's attention from the road and surrounding traffic can be considered a distraction and increase the risk of an accident.
Factor #3: Failure to Obey Traffic Signals
Disregarding traffic signals, including red lights and stop signs, is a major contributor to intersection accidents. Impatient or distracted drivers may fail to yield the right-of-way, resulting in severe collisions. Furthermore, pedestrians crossing against traffic lights also contribute to the rise in pedestrian accident rates at an intersection.
Studies indicate that approximately 30% of intersection crashes are caused by drivers running red lights or stop signs. That is why it is pertinent that if a light turns yellow you slow down rather than speed up to pass the light. In order to improve intersection safety abide by traffic lights.
What can be done to encourage drivers and pedestrians to obey road rules at an intersection?
Promoting awareness through educational campaigns can play a crucial role in encouraging individuals to obey traffic rules. Strict enforcement of traffic laws, including red-light cameras and increased police presence at intersections, can serve as deterrents. Implementing clear signage, audible signals for the visually impaired, and countdown timers can also contribute to better compliance.
Factor #4: Left-Turn Crashes
A Left-turn intersection crash is a persistent challenge because of the misjudgments of oncoming vehicle speeds or gaps in traffic. Drivers attempting left turns often struggle to assess the distance and speed of approaching vehicles, leading to hazardous situations and collisions.
Recent statistics reveal that left-hand turns that result in crashes represent approximately 22% of all intersection-related accidents. Furthermore, there has been a 10% increase in left turn accidents compared to the previous year, underscoring the need for improved strategies to address this specific issue at intersections.
What can drivers do to minimize the risk of left-turn accidents at intersections?
To minimize the risk of left-hand turns that result in a car accident, drivers should exercise caution and follow these tips:
Always use turn signals to indicate your turning left.
Yield to oncoming traffic before turning left.
Assess the speed and distance of approaching vehicles accurately.
Avoid making sudden or rushed turns.
Stay attentive and avoid distractions.
Factor #5: Inadequate Infrastructure and Design
Poorly designed intersections and inadequate infrastructure can significantly contribute to accidents. Factors such as insufficient signage, unclear lane markings, inadequate lighting, and the absence of dedicated turn lanes can create confusion and increase the chances of collisions.
Approximately 20% of intersection accidents are attributed to design flaws and inadequate infrastructure. However, studies have shown that improved intersection design can reduce accidents by up to 30%. It is essential to invest in well-designed intersections to ensure the safety of all road users and minimize the occurrence of accidents.
Who is responsible for ensuring intersection infrastructure and design are adequate?
Intersection infrastructure and design fall under the purview of transportation departments and local municipalities. These entities are responsible for conducting regular assessments of intersections, identifying areas for improvement, and implementing necessary changes. Collaboration between traffic engineers, urban planners, and local authorities is crucial to ensuring safe and well-designed intersections.
Factor #6: Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney
In the unfortunate event of an intersection accident, hiring a personal injury attorney can be crucial to protect your rights and seek fair compensation. Here are some reasons why you may want to consider hiring a personal injury attorney:
a) Legal Expertise:
Personal injury attorneys specialize in handling cases related to accidents and have in-depth knowledge of the legal complexities involved. They can navigate the legal process, gather evidence, and provide valuable guidance throughout your case.
b) Compensation and Damages:
A skilled personal injury attorney will work diligently to ensure you receive fair compensation for medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, pain, and suffering resulting from the accident. They will assess the circumstances, calculate the damages, negotiate with insurance companies, and fight for your rights.
c) Legal Representation:
Having a personal injury attorney by your side means you have a professional representing your interests. They will handle communication with insurance companies, gather evidence, interview witnesses, and build a strong case on your behalf. If necessary, they will represent you in court and fight for the compensation you deserve.
d) Peace of Mind:
Dealing with the aftermath of an intersection accident can be overwhelming. Hiring a personal injury attorney allows you to focus on your recovery while knowing that a legal expert is advocating for your rights and best interests.
In the event of an intersection accident, hiring a personal injuries attorney such as those at Demesmin and Dover Law Firm is a great idea. They can provide essential legal expertise and representation to ensure your rights are protected and fair compensation is obtained. So call today at 866-954- MORE (6673) for your free consultation.