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Why fatal collisions often occur at intersections

On Behalf of | Apr 12, 2022 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

Some stretches of Louisiana roadway are more dangerous than others. For instance, anytime you approach an intersection, you’re at risk for a collision if there are other vehicles in the vicinity, especially if one of the drivers is not paying attention. There’s no way to guarantee travel safety 100% from the time you get behind the wheel until you reach your destination.

However, you can expect motorists with whom you share the road to obey traffic laws. It’s also reasonable for you to assume that other drivers will be cautious and alert while operating a motor vehicle, especially in high-risk areas, such as intersections. There are several things you can do to improve intersection safety.

Don’t try to beat a yellow light

A yellow light is a cautionary signal that lets you know the traffic light is about to turn red. It’s always safest to assume the light change will happen soon. Instead of speeding up or continuing to move into the crossroad, you can start coming to a full stop as if the light were already turning red.

Go slow, even when you have a green light

If you’re approaching an intersection up ahead and can see that the light is green, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s safe to continue traveling at the posted speed limit. You can reduce your chances for a collision by traveling at slow speeds when approaching or navigating intersections, especially if you’re making a turn.

Expect the worst, and be glad if it doesn’t happen

Rather than assume that you’ll make it through an intersection safely, always expect the worst. The more aware you are that a distracted driver, a drunk driver or a reckless driver might blow through a red light or stop sign, etc., the less of a chance there might be that a crash will occur.

For instance, even if your light turns green or you have the right-of-way at a stop sign, it’s safer to pause, expecting that another driver might not yield or might fail to stop at a red light, rather than automatically step on the gas only to have another car hit you before you make it through the intersection.

Most intersection collisions occur because of recognition or decision errors

There are thousands of fatal intersection collisions in Louisiana and beyond, each year. If you’re approaching a crossroad, and another driver doesn’t realize that he or she has a red light or fails to see a stop sign, etc., you might suffer injury if a crash occurs because of his or her recognition error.

Decision errors, such as turning without use of a proper signal or making an unsafe lane change, etc., also account for a substantial number of intersection collisions. You are not responsible for another driver’s behavior, but you may be the one to suffer injury because of it. Intersection collisions that are caused by driver negligence often lead to litigation when a recovering victim files a personal injury claim in a civil court.