Intersections bring together traffic from opposing directions and are the most dangerous location for accidents. A significant percentage of motor vehicle accident-related injuries occur from intersection accidents, according to the Federal Highway Administration. Because intersection accidents often involve vehicles speeding through changing traffic lights, intersection collisions often happen when both vehicles are traveling at higher speeds. As a result, the victims of intersection accidents tend to suffer serious personal injuries.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an intersection accident due to someone else’ carelessness or disregard for safety, you may be entitled to pursue compensation for your medical bills and related losses such as costs of long-term care, lost wages, reduced quality of life, and pain and suffering.
The Kentucky intersection accident attorneys of Morgan, Collins, Yeast & Salyer are ready to stand up for you and hold the at-fault driver accountable. Our law firm has helped injured victims recover hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation for our clients over the years. Our attorneys pursue our clients’ cases from all angles to maximize the compensation you receive.
At Morgan, Collins, Yeast & Salyer, we strive to provide you with personalized service. We have eight office locations across the state of Kentucky – in Lexington, Somerset, Hazard, London, Manchester, Princeton, Paintsville, and Paducah – to serve you. We are available to you 24/7 to answer all your questions. The attorneys you see in our television advertisements are the actual lawyers who will handle your case. We’re real lawyers, not just advertisers who happen to have a law degree.
If you’ve been in a Kentucky intersection accident, contact Morgan, Collins, Yeast & Salyer today to schedule a no-cost case evaluation. We’ll discuss how our firm can help you seek the full financial recovery you need to rebuild your life. Call us today at (877) 809-5352 to schedule a free consultation.
Who Is at Fault in an Intersection Accident?
After many intersection accidents, the drivers involved try to blame one another for causing the accident. When this happens, it becomes necessary to conduct an investigation to determine who was at fault for the intersection accident. Investigating an intersection accident can sometimes be as straightforward as obtaining a video from a traffic camera or a nearby surveillance camera that captured the accident and shows one driver causing the crash. Eyewitnesses also can provide compelling evidence of a driver’s negligence.
However, determining fault in some intersection accidents can be more complicated. Evidence that can be used to determine fault for an intersection accident includes:
- Accident scene photos, including the positions of vehicles after the accident, damage to the vehicles, skid marks on the road, traffic controls at the scene, weather and lighting conditions, and traffic and road surface conditions
- Vehicle damage reports, which will detail damage to the vehicles and may also reveal whether a vehicle had inadequate maintenance or defects
- Statements from the other drivers involved in the accident; if the driver makes contradictory statements, it may indicate the driver is attempting to hide fault
- Accident reconstruction reports, which can include written reports, physical diagrams, or even computer-animated recreations to show how the accident occurred
Usually, an intersection accident is caused by a driver who didn’t have the right of way. However, some intersection accidents are caused by multiple motorists. Others besides motorists may also share some fault. For example, if an accident is caused by a vehicle’s brake failure, the vehicle or brake part manufacturer may bear liability for the accident if the brakes had a design or manufacturing defect.
Common Injuries from Intersection Crashes
Intersection accidents can lead to serious or catastrophic injuries for the motorists and passengers involved in the accident, especially when crashes involve head-on or T-bone collisions. Common injuries suffered in intersection accidents include:
- Lacerations and contusions, which can lead to profuse bleeding in victims
- Soft-tissue injuries, such as sprains and tears of ligaments, tendons, or muscles
- Broken bones
- Injuries to internal organs, such as bruising or perforation
- Internal bleeding
- Neck and back injuries, such as whiplash injuries like herniated or ruptured discs
- Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
- Burns, if the accident results in a fire
- Head injuries, including eye and ear injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
In some cases, injuries suffered in intersection crashes can leave victims with permanent disabilities. In more tragic cases, intersection accident injuries can even be fatal.
Common Causes of Intersection Accidents
Navigating an intersection requires full attention and focus from motorists. A driver who takes his or her attention off the road when approaching an intersection or drives carelessly or recklessly through an intersection poses a significant risk of causing an intersection accident. Some of the more common causes of intersection accidents include:
- Running red lights or ignoring other traffic control devices
- Failure to yield the right of way
- Failure to signal a turn
- Making an illegal turn
- Sudden braking
- Tailgating, or following too closely
- Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs
- Distracted driving, caused by a cell phone, car radio, GPS unit, food or drink, personal grooming, interacting with other vehicle occupants, or distraction outside the vehicle
- Fatigued or drowsy driving
- Inexperienced drivers
- Poor vehicle maintenance, which can lead to failure of critical vehicle components in an intersection such as turn signals or brakes
Many intersection accidents happen when several of the above causes occur at the same time. Ultimately, intersection accidents are caused when a motorist takes his or her attention off the road, makes an error in judgment, or operates their vehicle in a reckless manner.
How Intersection Accidents Happen in Kentucky
According to the Kentucky Department of Transportation, the top five contributing factors to accidents in the state in 2018 were:
- Motorists did not have control of their vehicle (29.52 percent of accidents)
- Driver inattention (18.52 percent of accidents)
- Alcohol involvement (10.69 percent of accidents)
- Failure to yield (9.49 percent of accidents)
- Unsafe speed (8.43 percent of accidents)
In studying intersection accidents, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that almost all intersection accidents in Kentucky and throughout the U.S. were caused by driver error. Some of the most frequent driver mistakes included:
- Driver inattention
- Incorrectly assuming the other driver’s actions or intentions
- Turning with an obstructed view
- Conducting an illegal maneuver
- Distracted driving
- Misjudging the gap between vehicles
- Misjudging the speed of the other vehicle
The study found that most intersection accidents involved a vehicle turning left or right. When an accident was caused by a vehicle turning left, the most common reasons for the accident included an obstructed view, misjudging an oncoming vehicle’s speed, or misjudging the gap between vehicles.
When an accident was caused by a right turn, the most common reason for the accident was a motorist misjudging or incorrectly assuming what the other driver was intending to do. Intersection accidents caused by younger drivers often result from distracted driving, misjudgment (likely due to the younger driver’s inexperience), speeding or aggressive driving.
How to Handle Intersection Accident Claims
If you’ve been in an intersection accident, there are certain steps that you should take to put yourself in the best position to make a claim for compensation for injuries and damages after the accident.
- Call 911 or the police to report the crash and summon emergency medical services if someone has been hurt
- Collect evidence from the scene, including photos or videos of the accident scene, eyewitness statements, and contact and insurance information from the drivers involved
- Notify the insurance company of your accident, even if you believe you weren’t at fault for the accident
- Seek medical treatment, even if you don’t feel that you were injured. A medical provider may identify injuries that do not yet bother you
- Follow your treatment instructions and recommendations. If you don’t, the insurance company may argue that you aren’t as seriously injured as you claim
- Talk to an experienced car accident attorney who can help you understand and evaluate your legal rights and options and file an insurance claim or lawsuit on your behalf.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an intersection accident caused by a negligent driver, it takes Kentucky Courage to keep fighting for fair compensation for your injuries when an insurance company tries to devalue your claim. The intersection accident attorneys at Morgan, Collins, Yeast & Salyer are ready to stand up for you. We want to help you seek the maximum financial recovery available by law.
Call us at (877) 809-5352 or fill out the contact form on our website to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation to speak with one of our experienced attorneys about your accident and to learn more about your legal rights and options for monetary compensation.