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Emergency Lane Accidents – When Can You Use the Emergency Lane?

Many people are killed or seriously injured in emergency lane accidents every year when another vehicle collides with the disabled vehicle, its driver, or passenger.

The emergency lane should generally only be used if you are directed to do so by law enforcement or in the event of an emergency, such as a major technical problem with your vehicle.

Pulling over to the side of the road when your car breaks down can be dangerous when the interstate is busy with heavy traffic. Other drivers usually allow a disabled motorist to get to a safe place on the side of the highway, but with distracted drivers and drunk drivers on the road, standing alongside your car when it’s broken down in the emergency lane can be extremely dangerous. Many people are killed or seriously injured in emergency lane accidents every year when another vehicle crashes into the disabled vehicle, its driver, or passenger.

If you are traveling down the highway and your car breaks down, you should avoid stopping in the travel lanes on interstates or highways. Instead, try to get off the road at the nearest exit or use the emergency lane. If you need to fix a flat tire, ensure you are as far away from the oncoming vehicles as possible and do not leave your tools in the way of oncoming traffic.

The emergency lane is there so drivers have a safer place to add gas, change tires, or wait for help. However, there are cases where unsuspecting drivers of disabled vehicles become victims of negligent or irresponsible drivers who do not follow safety rules.

Even the pedestrians near the stopped vehicle in the emergency lane can be at high risk. They should stay as far from oncoming traffic as possible. There may be several reasons why an accident may occur in an emergency lane. An oncoming driver may be drowsy or impaired due to alcohol or drug use. The oncoming driver may not be paying attention and may not see that a car is pulled off the road until it is too late.

Some Ways to Stay Safe

There may be several reasons why a person needs to pull off the highway and onto the emergency lane. Here are a few things you can do to stay safe:

  • Maintain your vehicle and check it regularly for any problems, especially before taking it for a long drive.
  • If your car breaks down, pull over to the side of the road as far as possible from the moving traffic.
  • Switch on the hazard lights and call for roadside assistance or emergency services.
  • If you must get out of the vehicle, try to get out from the side, away from the oncoming traffic.
  • Carry flares in your trunk to light flares to notify oncoming traffic if you break down at night.
  • If and when possible, stay behind the guard rail.
  • Avoid crossing the traffic.

Contact a Car Accident Attorney

If you were injured while waiting for road assistance in the emergency lane, you should seek legal help from a competent Missouri car accident attorney. Call us 24/7 to schedule a free and private consultation.

Free Consultation with a St. Louis Car Accident Lawyer

Don’t talk to an insurance claims adjuster before speaking with The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. We can help you avoid making statements that may affect the outcome of your case. The consultation is free; you don’t pay unless we get you money!

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Updated: April 23, 2024