As motorists, try as we might, we all eventually have to make left-hand turns across traffic, and they can be daunting. The fact is that left-hand turns are disproportionately associated with dangerous accidents on our roadways, and contrary to popular belief, the motorist making the left-hand turn is not always at fault (or entirely at fault). If you’ve been injured by another driver’s negligence in a left-hand turn accident, don’t delay consulting with an experienced Atlanta-area personal injury attorney.
The Dangers Inherent to Left-Hand Turns
Intersections are those places on our roads where traffic traveling in all different directions converges, which makes them some of the most dangerous places on our roads. Making a left turn in an intersection is about the most dangerous maneuver you can perform – due to the fact that you’re directly crossing the path of oncoming traffic. This leaves you exceptionally vulnerable to potentially deadly head-on (or nearly head-on) and T-bone collisions.
Left-hand turns are also uniquely dangerous for a variety of other reasons, including:
- Left-hand turns disrupt the flow of traffic, and if there’s no dedicated turn lane can significantly impede traffic.
- When a turning motorist fails to engage his or her turn signal, a left-hand turn can seem to come out of nowhere. Further, distracted motorists sometimes miss those blinkers in the first place and simply expect traffic to continue moving forward at speed.
- Motorists making left turns must factor in pedestrians who are both in and entering the lanes they’re crossing, which can make these turns that much more precarious.
- Motorists must carefully account for their vehicles’ blind spots when they make left-hand turns.
Left-Hand Turns and Fault
When motorists make left-hand turns at intersections (or into driveways, parking lots, or anything else), they’re responsible for doing so safely and for ceding the right-of-way to oncoming traffic (because they are deviating from their forward paths). Motorists who fail to make these turns safely due to their own haste, distraction, miscalculations, or anything else are at-fault for any accidents that ensue. However, there are instances when the driver making the left-hand turn may not be responsible for any ensuing accidents, including:
- When the motorist has a green light indicating an arrow to the left
- When the motorist makes a safe left turn but is unexpectedly stalled in his or her path by an emergency, such as a car accident or a dear in the road
- When the motorist makes what he or she calculates to be a safe left turn but is struck in the process by a motorist who blasts through the intersection at excessive speed
When it comes to making left-hand turns, always proceed with caution.
Discuss Your Claim with an Experienced Atlanta-Area Personal Injury Attorney Today
If you’ve been injured in a left-turn accident that was caused by another motorist’s negligence, the dedicated personal injury attorneys at Slappey & Sadd – proudly serving the Atlanta area – have vast experience successfully guiding claims like yours toward resolutions that work. We’re here to help you, too, so please don’t hesitate to schedule a free consultation by contacting or calling us at 888.474.9616 today.