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Could New Intersection Design Help Prevent Car Accidents?

Car accidents frequently occur at intersections. With vehicles, bicyclists, and pedestrians all converging in one place, there is a higher probability of a crash, particularly when people fail to pay attention or follow the law.

While human error is behind most accidents, studies suggest that we could make our roads safer by moving away from the two-way intersection. In this traditional intersection, vehicles have 32 different occasions to crash into one another when two two-lane roadways converge at a standard intersection.

As San Diego car accident lawyers, we can attest to the risks. From our experience, some of the most serious accidents occur at the middle of intersections, particularly where vehicles turn left across oncoming traffic.

With this in mind, traffic safety engineers are increasingly looking to new intersection designs that help alleviate the potential crash points. Some of the most innovative designs come from the Applied Technology and Traffic Analysis Program at the University of Maryland. For instance, researchers have come up with a design that elevates drivers making left turns to keep them out of the main roadway.

Unfortunately, these “intersections of the future” may not become a reality for some time. Therefore, we would like to offer San Diego drivers several tips that may help deter a crash in a traditional four-way intersection:

  • Pay special attention when approaching intersections and avoid distractions.
  • Drive defensively.
  • Stay in your lane.
  • Even with a green light, look both ways before entering an intersection.
  • Finish your turn in the correct lane.
  • Maintain a safe stopping distance between you and the car ahead. The recommended following distance is a minimum of one car length for every 10 m.p.h.
  • Always use your directional to signal your turn.
  • Don’t speed up to get through a yellow light. Yellow lights mean proceed with caution, not speed up to get through the intersection. Always stop on a yellow light if you can do so safely.

If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a San Diego car accident, don’t hesitate to contact a San Diego personal injury attorney at the Law Offices of Robert Vaage for a free consultation.