Anywhere two or more roads come together is considered an intersection. The most common intersections allow traffic to go in three or four different directions, although there are also some five-, six- and even seven-way intersections.
Because vehicles cross paths at intersections, traffic must be controlled in order to prevent collisions. Stop signs, yield signs and traffic lights are common at intersections to provide the necessary control, and drivers must wait until they have the right of way.
Unfortunately, not every driver obeys the rules of the road at intersections. When a driver makes a mistake or does something careless at an intersection, there is very high potential for someone to get hurt in an accident.
Intersection accidents are very common. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicates that approximately 40 percent of all car crashes in the United States occur at an intersection.
In many cases, these accidents occur when one or more drivers at an intersection does something wrong.
For example, the NHTSA report on driver-related causes of intersection accidents indicates that:
- 44.1 percent of intersection accidents involved inadequate observation. Drivers didn’t look or didn’t see other cars approaching.
- 8.4 percent of accidents at intersections happened because of an incorrect assumption made by one or more drivers. For example, a driver may have assumed that a car approaching a yellow light was going to stop, and thus may have made a turn in front of the car.
- 7.8 percent of accidents at intersections occurred when a driver turned even though his or her view was obstructed.
- 6.7 percent of accidents at intersections were attributed to distracted driving, such as texting or talking on a cell phone.
- 5.5 percent of accidents at intersections can be attributed to driver misjudgment. A driver, for example, may have improperly estimated how fast another vehicle was going.
In any case where a driver breaks a driving rule or is unreasonably careless, he or she could be held legally liable for all of the resulting injuries and losses in a car accident.
Injuries from Intersection Accidents
Intersection accidents are among the most serious of all car wrecks. They often result in side-impact or T-bone collisions where the point of impact is on the side of a vehicle.
Researchers at the University of Michigan found that side-impact crashes may be more dangerous than head-on or rear-end accidents because the car’s sides offer little cushioning to absorb the force, unlike the front and rear of the car, which can crumple.
Some of the most common injuries that occur in an intersection accident include:
- Fractured ribs and other broken bones, including the femur and pelvis
- A punctured lung or lung contusions
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Ruptured spleen and other internal organ injuries
- Spinal cord injuries/paralysis
- Facial injuries
- Aortic damage or damage to the pulmonary vessels
- Cuts, bruises and lacerations.
Compensation for Intersection Accidents
The injuries that result from an intersection accident can be painful and, in some cases, permanent. You may have to miss work, take sick time or even leave your job entirely if your injuries prevent you from working.
There are also non-economic costs that can occur after an intersection accident. For example, you may experience a diminished quality of life and you may be in ongoing pain. You may also suffer from emotional problems as a result of the accident.
The law in Washington says you should be made whole for these injuries, and you can do this by collecting compensation from the person who was responsible for the crash.
Because the law allows a victim only a limited amount of time to file a claim for injuries or for a wrongful death, you should contact an experienced car accident lawyer today to find out what legal options you have.
Contact the Yakima car accident attorneys at Mariano Morales Law today by calling (509) 972-0493 or by using our online contact form for your free initial consultation.If we handle your case, we receive payment only if we obtain a settlement or verdict for you.