According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), failure to yield the right of way causes over 3,500 fatalities on the roadways every year and accounts for 7 percent of all car accident deaths in the United States. Every person has a responsibility and duty to ensure that they drive safely on the roads and this includes yielding appropriately to other vehicles. If you suffered injuries as a result of another driver failing to yield, a Washington DC failure to yield accident lawyer may be able to help you pursue compensation for medical expenses, lost wages and more. Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC at 800-959-1444 to speak to a member of our team about your case today.
Understanding Right of Way
Every roadway has specific sets of rules and regulations that drivers must follow in order to ensure that everyone on the roads stays safe. Every motorist needs to follow these rules, otherwise serious accidents may result. The right of way is a set of road rules that determines which motorist has the legal right to go first in certain situations. When two motorists enter an intersection or area on the road at the same time, the right of way rules determine which motorist has the legal right to go first.
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Understanding Failure to Yield
There are areas on the roadway where two vehicles can enter simultaneously such as intersections or merging lanes of traffic. If one motorist fails to follow the rules and regulations regarding the right of way laws, then their failure to appropriately yield to another motorist can result in catastrophic injuries or even death.
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Types of Failure to Yield Accidents
There are several areas on the roadways in which failure to yield occurs by one motorist that may result in serious accidents including the following:
According to the District Department of Transportation (DDOT), 20% of all fatal car accidents occur at intersections. Intersections are notoriously dangerous for many reasons including for failure to yield. Failure to yield at an intersection may appear as failing to yield at a stop sign, failing to stop at a stoplight, failing to slow down and stop at a yellow light, or failing to yield when a yield sign is apparent and directed towards one motorist. Intersections have a high rate of failure to yield accidents as they are areas in which many different vehicles converge simultaneously. When even one motorist fails to yield, serious accidents can result.
In most cases, when a motorist wants to make a left turn, they must do so across an opposing lane of traffic. To avoid any sideswiping or T-bone accidents, a motorist must yield to the oncoming traffic and wait until the lane of traffic clears to make a safe left turn. Failure to yield in these circumstances can result in serious accidents.
Right Turn on Red
In almost all cases, a motorist has the legal right to make a right turn at a red light. However, while a motorist may have the legal right to make a right turn at a red light, they have the legal requirement to yield to oncoming traffic and safely merge with that traffic. Failing to yield to the oncoming traffic can result in severe collisions.
Private Driving Areas
Parking lots and driveways are notoriously dangerous and often involve failure to yield accidents. In these private areas, motorists may not have a true understanding of which motorist has the right of way. However, the law states that drivers that exit parking lots or driveways must always yield to oncoming traffic. Within parking lots, motorists should always use extreme caution to ensure that they do not fail to yield to other drivers and cause serious accidents.
When a motorist is entering a highway through an on-ramp, they must yield the right of way to the traffic already on the roadway. Failure to do so can lead to sideswiping or other serious accidents.
Any emergency vehicle, such as a fire truck, ambulance, or police car that has its lights and/or sirens on always has the right of way on any roadway in the United States. All vehicles must immediately stop or slow down and yield to these emergency vehicles in every situation and circumstance. Failure to yield can result in a catastrophic accident, as these vehicles are often traveling at high rates of speed.
Pedestrians and Bicyclists
Motorists should always yield to pedestrians and bicyclists. They have the right of way in crosswalks and intersections. The failure to yield in these circumstances can lead to tragic accidents involving fatalities of pedestrians or bicyclists.
Causes of Failure to Yield Accidents
There are many different reasons that a motorist may fail to yield in the above-mentioned circumstances. Some of those include:
- Driving while distracted (talking on a cell phone, texting, eating, etc.)
- Unfamiliar with surroundings or roadways
- Driving while drowsy
- Reckless, careless, or negligent driving
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
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Compensation for Injured Victims
If you suffered injuries as a result of another driver failing to yield appropriately, you may have the legal right to pursue compensation for all of your medical bills related to your injuries including doctor’s visits, therapy, surgeries, hospitalizations, ambulance rides, prescription medications, and mental health therapy. Additionally, you have the legal right to pursue compensation for lost wages due to your inability to return to work resulting from your injuries. If you suffered damages to your vehicle, you also have the right to pursue compensation for repair or replacement of any property damage. Finally, you have the legal right to pursue pain and suffering that resulted from injuries related to your car accident. If you suffered injuries as a result of a driver failing to yield appropriately, learn how a Washington DC failure to yield accident lawyer at Ben Crump Law, PLLC may be able to help you pursue compensation for your injuries and losses.
Washington DC Statute of Limitations on Failure To Yield Accidents
According to the statute of limitations under the Code of the District of Columbia § 12–301, you have three years to file your lawsuit. This means you do not have more than three years from the date of the accident to take legal action against a driver who failed to yield and caused an accident.
You also want to give yourself time to investigate the case and negotiate with insurance companies. A lawyer can help you handle your case and abide by the statute of limitations in case you decide to file a personal injury lawsuit.
Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC at 800-959-1444. The sooner you call, the sooner we can begin handling your case, which may involve filing a personal injury lawsuit.
Learn How a Washington DC Failure to Yield Accident Lawyer Can Help
If you or a loved one suffered injuries in an accident resulting from a motorist’s failure to yield, learn how a Washington DC failure to yield accident lawyer can help you pursue a financial award for injuries and losses in an accident that was not your fault. Contact Ben Crump Law, PLLC at 800-959-1444 to discuss your case with a member of our team today.