One of the most dangerous areas of the road is the intersection. There are cars coming from four different directions, busy traffic and pedestrians, not to mention how often the people at these intersections can be distracted by their phones, kids, pets, or who knows what. That’s why when an accident happens at an intersection, it’s often difficult to know who was at fault.
Las Vegas is a busy city. Full of attractions and tourists, it’s no wonder that the intersection at Sahara Avenue and Decatur Boulevard has the most crashes in Clark County, and in 2015 was the deadliest intersection in the state. If you live in the area, or in the vicinity of any intersection, you need to know the rules of the road, and take the necessary precautions when driving through them.
Who’s at fault in an intersection collision?
If you do happen to find yourself a part of an accident at an intersection, it’s important to know who was at fault; but how do we determine that? The most common factor in accidents at intersections is negligence. Whether the driver is looking down at their phone or simply not paying attention, this negligence is what often causes a pedestrian to be hit or for two or more vehicles to collide.
A common car accident at intersections is the T-bone accident, also called a side-impact crash. Often, these collisions are the result of speeding or running red lights, and that means the impact is hard and forceful. They are especially dangerous for older cars without side-impact airbags and for certain smaller SUVs.
These sorts of crashes are unpredictable, especially if you are the one who gets hit. That’s why it’s always important to be aware of your surroundings and to drive cautiously, especially at intersections. You never know if someone’s going to be speeding through that intersection.
A key factor in determining who’s at fault is establishing who had the right of way. The laws on right of way in Nevada are detailed in NRS 484B.250, and includes factors like which driver gets to the intersection first, and whether or not there is an operating traffic signal at the intersection. Of course, any pedestrian at an intersection who is using the crosswalk or following pedestrian signage is going to have right of way over any vehicle, so it’s important to do everything possible to avoid hitting someone trying to cross the road, whether at a crosswalk or not.
In fact, being a pedestrian in Las Vegas can be quite dangerous. They are especially vulnerable at highway intersections, where there are multiple lanes of traffic and drivers may be more focused on where they are going than on their surroundings. Pedestrian accidents most commonly happen at intersections. Las Vegas is not the most pedestrian-friendly city and many times cars and trucks do not pay attention to pedestrians or their right of way. It is important for pedestrians to use marked crosswalks and follow traffic signals and walk signs, but cars and trucks must slow down at intersections and watch for pedestrians. As a driver, you must assume that a pedestrian is going to cross the street and yield to their right of way.
What are the causes of intersection accidents?
There are several main reasons why accidents happen at intersections. Two of these are speeding and failing to obey the traffic signals, the two often occurring hand-in-hand. Drivers often speed to try and make it through that yellow light, or turn right when it’s a No Right on Red intersection. The National Highway Traffic Safety Association has reported in the past that 46% of intersection accidents happen because the driver failed to obey a traffic signal.
Other common causes of accidents at intersections include:
- Trying to turn right with traffic in the lane
- Being rear-ended and pushed into traffic
- Not adjusting for weather or road conditions
- Failing to yield the right of way
- Defective equipment
- Failing to survey the surrounding area
- Obstructed views
- Distracted driving
Common intersection injuries
Any car accident is dangerous, but crashes at intersections can be even more so due to the complex traffic and the amount of pedestrians that are trying to cross. So what kind of injuries can someone expect if they are ever in an accident at an intersection?
|· Wrongful death |
· Internal injuries and organ damage
· Spinal cord injuries or paralysis
· Permanent disabilities
|· Bone breaks and compound fractures |
· Lacerations and road rash
· Scarring and disfigurement
· Chest and ribcage injuries
· Organ damage
These sorts of injuries can lead to long lasting issues and mountains of bills from the hospital. It’s important to follow the rules of the road to avoid such dangerous accidents, but we cannot control the actions of others on the road. Try as we might, it can be possible to end up in an accident at an intersection.
Intersections, especially in Las Vegas, are dangerous. They are a common place for all sorts of accidents, whether it involves cars, pedestrians, or a mixture of the two. All sorts of injuries can occur from the crashes at intersections. That’s why it’s important to follow the rules of the road, and to know who has the right of way. If you live in the Las Vegas or Reno area and have sustained injuries in an accident at an intersection, call Claggett & Sykes at 702-333-7777, or use our contact form to set up an appointment.
We are not simply a personal injury firm. We are trial lawyers who take on catastrophic injury, brain injury, and wrongful death cases. These cases are different than most personal injury cases and the needs of these cases cannot be met by law firms that take on just any case.
Read more about Claggett & Sykes Law Firm