Left-Turn Car Accidents

An intersection is the most dangerous place for an accident, and the left turn is the most dangerous contributor to an intersection collision. In addition to being common, intersection accidents also tend to be very serious.

Berenson Injury Law has close to 40 years of experience representing drivers and pedestrians injured in left turn intersection accidents. Bill Berenson is Texas Board certified as a personal injury trial lawyer, a testament to his abilities to take on complex, high-stakes cases.

Why Are Left Turns Dangerous?

2.5 million accidents occur in intersections every year, accounting for about 40 percent of all crashes. More than half of intersection accidents involve a left turn.

This seemingly simple maneuver creates several opportunities for a collision. First, unless in a designated turning lane, the turning car must either stop or slow considerably to wait for oncoming traffic to pass. The turning vehicle becomes a sitting duck. Vehicles behind the turning car must brake, making them also vulnerable to being rear-ended. Drivers attempting to go straight must often pull out in front of cars speeding by in the adjoining lane.

After successfully overcoming that obstacle, the turn itself is risky. When crossing opposite travelling traffic, the driver must judge the distance and speed of the oncoming vehicles. The turning driver risks being t-boned by a driver who is traveling faster than calculated. Alternately, the driver may clip a car that slows down or changes lanes while passing through the intersection.

Motorcycles add another dangerous element to making a left turn. The braking distance is different on a bike, and its speed and distance are harder to judge. A motorcyclist may be unable to stop in time to avoid hitting a left turning car that pulls in front and is at risk of laying down his bike.

Dangers of Left Turns in Heavy Pedestrian Areas

25 percent of all pedestrian accidents in the country involve a left turning vehicle. Texas is ranked 10th in numbers of pedestrian fatalities, many of which occur in left turn accidents.

Heavy pedestrian traffic competes with drivers in Downtown Dallas and Fort Worth, the Stockyards, and other popular Dallas and Fort Worth entertainment areas. Visitors heading to and from surrounding parking lots must cross busy streets where drivers are distracted by their quest for a parking space or a text message from an awaiting friend.

Even alert drivers, however, are a risk to pedestrians who are crossing at designated crosswalks. A driver with a green light may be making a left turn at the exact moment that the pedestrian receives the walk signal to cross. The driver who is carefully looking out for vehicles coming from the opposite direction or crossing the intersection may fail to scan for cyclists and pedestrians. Taken together, these factors make left turns particularly dangerous to pedestrians.

Investigating Intersection Crash Claims

Because of the various factors involved in a left turn, these cases can be challenging to investigate. Our accident law firm analyzes vehicle damage, debris scatter and skid marks to determine the angle and speed of impact. We also try to locate video cameras that might have caught images of the crash. For example, nearby stores and residential communities may have cameras pointed in the right direction.

Often, both the driver and pedestrian had the right of way, and so the issue of fault is highly contested. When fault is at issue, we research evidence of last clear chance, meaning the party who injured you was ultimately able to avoid the collision and did not.

Learn More About Left Turn and Intersection Crashes in Dallas-Fort Worth

Berenson Injury Law helps people injured in Dallas and Fort Worth’s dangerous intersections. If you were injured by a driver making a left turn or while you were turning left, schedule a free consultation at 817-885-8000 or through our online appointment form. Our Dallas-Fort Worth intersection accident attorney at Berenson Injury Law represents you on contingency so there is no risk to pursuing your rights.

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