Intersection accidents occur more often than other types of motor vehicle accidents for several reasons, even when marked by stoplights or other road signs. Markel Insurance reports that most fatal incidents of intersection crashes occur due to side-impact collisions, where vehicles may not offer as much protection for drivers and passengers.
Drivers can avoid such incidents, as well as serious injury, by understanding a few common causes of intersection crashes.
1. Inattention to intersection rules
Intersection crashes happen as the result of drivers failing to understand the rules of 4-way stops. A driver may assume that he or she has the right of way and crosses out of turn, which can cause a side-impact wreck. Drivers who approach the intersection at the same time must yield to the vehicle on their right before proceeding through the intersection.
2. Trying to beat the light
Some accidents happen at intersections marked by stoplights because of impatient or reckless drivers who try to beat a yellow light. Some caution lights only last for a few moments and alert drivers to slow down or brake. Drivers heading in the opposite direction may accelerate quickly when their light turns green, which could result in a serious accident.
3. Inattentive driving
Distracted driving can cause intersection accidents as drivers take their eyes off the traffic flow due to conversation with passengers, texting or adjusting other electronic devices. Even a brief moment of inattention can result in an accident, especially for young or inexperienced motorists.
Increased vigilance at intersections, such as checking twice for vehicles at all points, can reduce the risk of a crash.