Intersection Accidents & Intersection Collision
Each year in the United States, thousands of people are killed or seriously injured due to intersection accidents. Pedestrians, motorists, and bicyclists are all at an increased risk for injury or death while passing through an intersection.
During rush hour, most of us find it frustrating to sit at a stop sign or red light, especially when you are in a hurry to get to work or reach home. Some drivers will neglect safety and instead roll through stop signs or rush to beat a yellow light to save a few seconds of time. Such drivers not only put their lives at risk but also make intersections and roads dangerous for others. According to statistics, 21 percent of fatalities and over 50 percent of serious injuries occur at intersections.
Unfortunately, not everyone follows traffic signals. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation estimates, only 10 percent of intersections have traffic lights and only 33 percent of intersection fatalities occur at intersections that have traffic signals. Every year, 165,000 people get injured in red light accidents. Half of the victims are red light runners themselves. Here is what you can do to stay safe and keep others safe at traffic lights:
- Yield to pedestrians: When you are turning left and the light is green, it does not mean it is safe to go. Look twice before proceeding – pedestrians have the right of way.
- Do not try to beat yellow lights: As long as you are not fully confident that you are within a reasonable distance, do not pass through an intersection on a yellow light.
- Watch out for red light runners: Even if you have the right of way, look before proceeding to make sure there is no one running a red light from the other direction.
Intersections with stop signs are more dangerous compared to those with traffic lights, even though they may not have as many cars. More traffic-related deaths occur at stop signs than at traffic lights. Here are some safety tips:
- Make eye contact with drivers: At four-way stops, some drivers are hesitant and others are overaggressive. There may be confusion about who arrived first. Making eye contact or any other form of non-verbal communication can clear up the confusion. This could help prevent stop sign accidents.
- Avoid rolling stops: This will not only save you from citations but will also help you avoid the risk of not seeing an oncoming vehicle.
Uncontrolled intersections are the most dangerous intersections because there are no traffic signals and drivers must regulate themselves. These intersections are usually T-shaped, but some have four-way traffic stops as well. At these intersections, drivers turning right to have the right of way.
- Slow down: When you approach an uncontrolled intersection, slow down.
- Stop and look before you turn: It may not be easy to see oncoming traffic when turning into a T-shaped intersection. Look twice even if there are no other cars coming.
- When in doubt, yield: If you are not sure about whether to go or stop, the best thing to do is yield.
Causes of Intersection Accidents
St. Louis intersection accidents can happen for a wide variety of reasons. However, some of the most common reasons include:
Too many intersection crashes occur because of a person’s failure to yield to the right-of-way. In Missouri, a person is permitted to turn right on red after coming to a complete stop, unless there is a sign stating otherwise. When the driver turns, they have to stay in the far most right-hand lane and are supposed to yield to all traffic, including pedestrians and bicyclists, that is moving through the intersection. This is just one of the laws that govern the activity through an intersection.
St. Louis Intersection Accident Lawyer
The Hoffman Law Firm, L.L.C., is dedicated to getting the maximum compensation for injury victims in Missouri and Illinois. After a serious injury or the loss of a loved one in a car or truck accident, you need to know that someone is on your side, protecting your rights and presenting an effective case to the insurance company. Without a strong advocate, you may not receive the financial compensation you need and deserve after a car, truck, motorcycle, bike or pedestrian accident.
At The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C., we focus our law practice exclusively on handling accident injury cases. With more than 15 years of experience, no case is too complex for attorney Christopher Hoffmann. Our goal is to secure maximum financial compensation for your physical and emotional recovery. Call us today at (314) 361-4242.