The main question asked after an intersection accident is who’s at fault and is possible to file a claim. The first step for you is to connect with Dubo Law, one of the best car accident attorneys in Maryland. Dubo team handled thousands of intersection crash personal claims and will secure you the proper amount for medical expenses, lost income and property damage costs. Some intersections can be big and involve multiple vehicles, especially during rush hours, so these cases can get complicated. Dubo is here to deal with all legal technicalities. Call us today at (443) 275-6345 for a free case evaluation!
What is Considered an Intersection Crash?
Intersections are conflict points where one road meets another and it includes side roads, cross streets, freeway entrances, and roundabouts. Cars, trucks, motorcyclists, bicyclists, and pedestrians all travel together at intersections. Anyone can be a victim or at fault. Traffic will only run smoothly if everyone plays by the rules. Those who fail to obey the traffic signs, lights, and the right of way may be the cause of a fatal accident.
Numbers on Intersection Crashes
Junctions or intersection crashes are among the most common of all traffic accidents. On the other hand, it is not possible to build a road system without intersections. Nearly 25% of all traffic fatalities occurred at junctions or intersections. Throughout the US, 14% of deaths occurred at intersections in rural areas and 30% in urban areas in 2020.
Most Dangerous Intersections in Maryland
National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported some of the deadliest intersections in Maryland state:
- Route 50 and Route 70, near Annapolis, MD – The cause may be confusing signs.
- Gwynns Falls Parkway at Reisterstown Road, Baltimore, MD – It is a very busy place with lots of shopping stores, restaurants, and several lanes. The main reasons for accidents are failure to obey traffic lights and distracted driving.
- Jones Falls Expressway, Cross Keys, Baltimore, MD – a place of heavy and long traffic. Drivers usually hurry through the red/yellow light which often causes accidents to happen.
- Other deadly intersections: Orleans Street at Gay and Enstor streets, South Monroe Street at Washington Boulevard, West Northern Parkway at Falls Road.
What Makes These Maryland Intersections So Dangerous?
There are several reasons why intersections are considered dangerous like overcrowded streets during rush hour or the design of the road itself. These characteristics below are just some reasons why the Baltimore intersections above are said to be the deadliest.
- Road defects
- Traffic lights malfunctioning
- Lack of signage
- Blind spots, fog, overpasses, hills, and poor lighting cause poor visibility
- Failure to mark lanes properly
- Unproper crosswalk for cyclists and pedestrians
- Many entry points
Proving Fault in Intersections Accidents in Maryland
With many vehicles and other traffic participants at intersections, it is sometimes difficult to determine who is to blame for the accident. The first step to prove the liability in an intersection accident is to check who stopped first and who had the right of way. For example, the driver was turning right, and the other driver was going straight through an intersection. The driver turning right has the right of way, which means that he wouldn’t be held liable for the accidents. If both drivers were going straight, they would share the fault if an accident occurs.
Speeding has a major role here too since it can prevent drivers from stopping on time thus causing a collision. So, another way to prove the liability may be by looking at who had more time to stop before the crash. The three most important things in determining the liability in an intersection accident are to evince negligence, duty, and fault of a responsible driver.
Intersection Accidents: Who is At Fault?
When proving the liability in an intersection accident in Maryland, both drivers and traffic defects may be at fault. In most cases, the at-fault driver failed to follow traffic rules, and this includes:
- Negligent or distracted driving – texting, talking, grabbing snacks or water, changing radio stations, etc.
- Speeding and aggressive driving
- DUI – Driving under drug and alcohol influence
- Making illegal left-turn or failing to yield the right of way by making the left-turn
- Failing to obey signs and traffic lights
In some cases, the driver is not held liable for an accident but for some other elements which you can’t really control. If there is a road malfunction, the agency that does the maintenance and design will be liable for the crash. Those included the following:
- Faulty roadway design
- Lack of road maintenance
- Malfunctioning traffic signals, lights, and downed signs
- Foliage or walls which obstruct drivers from seeing the road properly
- Other reasons include weather conditions such as snowstorms, heavy rain, hail, and vehicle defect like some mechanical issues.
Maryland Car Accident Laws
Maryland strictly follows a contributory negligence rule which means that if the driver was even 1% at fault for the accident, he/she won’t be entitled to any compensation. So, it is crucial to prove that the other driver was 100% responsible for the accident, so you can recoup losses such as medical expenses and lost income. In cases where the fault isn’t that obvious the wisest thing to do is let a car accident attorney handle all legalities for you. The attorney’s job is to reconstruct the scene, gather evidence, and collect all reports, receipts, and necessary documents.
Another important rule to consider is the Statute of Limitations in Maryland. It is the period of time in which you have the right to file a claim and seek compensation for damages. In Maryland the limitation is three years from the moment of an accident. It is important to meet this deadline because failing to do so you’ll be banned from asking for compensation ever again. There are few exceptions to this rule which involve minors, wrongful death claims and mentally incapacitated drivers.
- Minors have time until they become legal adults
- For wrongful death claims the clock starts ticking from the date and time of death
- If a person was mentally incapacitated at the time of an accident, the claim can be filed from the moment the person becomes mentally comprehensible again
Follow this link for more information on Maryland car accident laws.
Damages in an Intersection Crashes
Damages can be both economic and non-economic. Economic damages are easy to calculate since they can be evidenced by doctor’s reports, receipts, employer statements on patients’ wages, etc. These include:
- Medical expenses
- Medical checkups, tests, and hospital stay
- If a person’s injury resulted in a certain disability – physical therapy and health care assistance
- Lost wages for current and future income
- Mechanic repairs and possible replacement or rental of the vehicle
Non-economic damages are stress, pain and suffering and destroyed quality of life. It is very inconvenient to put a price tag on how much someone suffered after some traumatic accident. That many people develop PTD (Post Traumatic Disorder) which enables them to function properly daily.
The jury will decide on non-economic damage compensation, but a personal injury lawyer will play the major role. Attorneys use various strategies to prove that someone’s quality of life is ruined. Family, friends, and colleagues may be crucial in this fight since they can state how a person’s life and behavior changed after the accident.
Things To Do After an Intersection Accident
- If it is possible and you don’t have any major injuries, step slowly out of the vehicle and check for any injured parties.
- If there are any injured drivers or passengers, call an ambulance.
- Call the police in case someone is badly injured or there was great property damage. Otherwise, the police can choose not to go to the scene. You should file the report at the station in the next 24 hours.
- Gather evidence such as photos, videos, witness statements, etc. This can benefit you in case you’re filing a compensation claim.
- Exchange personal and insurance information with other parties
Possible Injuries in Intersection Accidents
Intersection accidents involve multiple vehicles but also other participants such as cyclists, pedestrians, and motorists so in case of an accident, multiple injuries may be present too. Some of the common injuries include whiplash, head injury, broken and fractured bones, bruises, and internal trauma. The severity of an accident dictates the severity of injuries. Usually, fatal accidents with death outcome involve speeding or aggressive driving since the vehicles are more likely to turn upside down.
Baltimore Intersection Accident Lawyers Committed to Your Success
Neil Dubovsky, the founder of Dubo Law, is known for his excellence, experience, and integrity. Neil is an awarded personal injury attorney who has helped many people to get the compensation they deserve. Our job is to examine and evaluate relevant details and evidence, as well as communicate with experts and handle negotiations with insurance companies. Neil worked for insurance companies too, so he has seen both sides of the medal. Dubo Law team is client-oriented and trustworthy, and we give our best to make clients satisfied with the outcome. Every case is considered unique, and Dubo Law team handles them with attentiveness, thoroughness, and great commitment.
I want to first thank Neil and the team at Dubo Law for the amazing job done to help me win my recent case. I would highly recommend Neil and his team to assist with your personal injury needs they were on top of their game from start to finish leaving no stone unturned to ensure a solid victory and judgment. Thanks again!
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