Intersection Car Accidents
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), approximately 40% of all car accidents in the United States occur at intersections. The vast majority of car accidents at intersections are caused by driver error, not road conditions, mechanical failure, or other potential vehicle problems. The busier the intersection, the greater the probability for an accident to occur. Additionally, many car accidents that occur at an intersection, happen during the evening commute when drivers may be tired and distracted.Dangerous Charlotte Intersections
Every year, the Charlotte Department of Transportation creates a list of High Accident Locations, including Charlotte’s most dangerous intersections. There are an average of 73 car accidents a day in Charlotte, and many of them occur at the following intersections:
- Reagan Drive at Tom Hunter Road
- John Kirk Drive at University City Boulevard
- North Tryon Street at University Pointe Boulevard
- East W.T. Harris Boulevard at North Tryon Street
- Reagan Drive at Tom Hunter Road
The high speeds of many drivers, and a large number of pedestrians in the area, can be a dangerous combination. As University City continues to grow, the infrastructure and traffic patterns are of primary concern. A local news station investigated these dangerous intersections and found multiple close calls for car accidents due to drivers running stop signs and red lights. According to experts, the wide, long roads in Charlotte, along with the high speeds of many drivers, and high volume of pedestrians and drivers alike, make this area particularly dangerous when it comes to intersection accidents.Common Causes of Intersection Accidents
There are many different causes of intersection accidents, including, but not limited to:
- Inclement Weather: While it rarely snows in the Charlotte area, we still have dangerous weather conditions on occasion, such as ice, sleet, or rain. None of us can control the weather, but we have a duty to drive reasonably under the circumstances. For example, when a driver knows that the road is icy, he or she should use extra caution to try and avoid a potential car accident.
- Poor Intersection Design: Another common cause of intersection accidents is poor intersection design. Poor intersection design is responsible for nearly a quarter of all intersection accidents in the United States. When an intersection is poorly designed, it may have blind spots where drivers, even the well-intentioned, cannot see oncoming traffic, resulting in dangerous accidents.
- Road Construction: Drivers may not be able to see in front of them or behind them when shrubbery, trees, large trucks, or road construction vehicles and equipment obstruct their visibility.
- Failure to Judge Speed: When a driver goes to make a left-hand turn at an intersection and underestimates how fast the oncoming vehicles are traveling, he or she may turn into the path of the vehicle. These types of collisions are often serious; the oncoming vehicle may be traveling at speeds over 45 miles per hour when it collides with the car making a left-hand turn.
- Failure to Look Ahead: When a driver fails to look ahead at oncoming traffic before entering an intersection, a serious car accident could occur. When drivers make a left or right-hand turn in a busy intersection, they need to carefully check oncoming traffic in all relevant directions before making the turn.
- Distracted Driving: Distracted driving is incredibly dangerous and one of the leading causes of car accidents. Today, motorists are subject to more distractions than ever. Whether they are tempted to look down and check a text message, make a phone call, or adjust their GPS devices, anytime their eyes are away from the road, the risk of a car accident increases. Not all distracted driving involves technology; instead, drivers can be daydreaming or failing to focus enough to notice oncoming traffic. When distracted driving causes a car accident, the victim may have a valid legal claim against the distracted driver for damages.
If you have been involved a car accident, it is important to consult with an attorney as soon as possible to make sure your rights are protected. At Arnold & Smith, PLLC, not only can we help you through the insurance claims process, but we can help you litigate any potential personal injuries claims you may want to bring against the other driver.
Contact us today to schedule your free initial consultation and learn how we can advocate for you. For your convenience and safety, we offer video and phone conferencing. If you prefer an in-person consultation, we have three easy to reach offices in Uptown Charlotte, Monroe and Mooresville.