car accidentOne Dead, One Arrest Following Fatal Car Accident

One person died, while two others sustained injuries in a three-vehicle pile-up in Lake Stevens on Thursday morning. Police and medics responded to the intersection of 20th ST SE and 91ST Ave SE, shortly before 7 am, after reports that a Ford Mustang, a Chevy Pick-up and a Ford Fusion were in a nasty car accident.

A preliminary investigation found that the driver of the Mustang, a 50-year-old man, had been heading east on 20th when he turned illegally in front of the oncoming Chevy pick-up. The pickup slammed into the passenger side of the Mustang, and both vehicles then hit the Ford Fusion waiting at the light.

One of the passengers in the Mustang died instantly, while the driver and other passenger were only injured.  Fortunately, the driver of the truck, his two passengers, and the driver of the Ford Fusion did not sustain any injuries.

The driver of the Mustang was later arrested for investigation of vehicular homicide and booked into the Snohomish County Jail.

View original news article: Lake Stevens Car Accident

Roadway Intersections and Car Accident Risks

Intersections are the most dangerous places on America’s roadways.  An intersection is a junction where multiple lanes of traffic coming from different directions meet. With the volume of fellow travelers sharing the road in a variety of transportation modes, navigating an intersection is not just be a safety risk, but can be fatal if drivers aren’t fully aware or attentive in their crossing maneuvers.

A car accident at an intersection can happen for a variety of reasons. For example, a car accident may be due to an illegal maneuver or lack of attention while turning at a controlled signal or stop sign.  Some turns may be aggressive or too fast for conditions.

According to a 2010 National Motor Vehicle Crash Causation Survey, intersection-related car accidents made up 40% of the estimated 5,811,000 car accidents that occurred nationwide in 2008.  Intersection-related car accidents were second only to rear-end collisions. Data collected at intersection crash scenes, involving at least one to three-vehicle wrecks, attributed most critical reasons for the crash to the driver’s state of mind just before the crash event.

Some drivers say that they executed their faulty intersection turns despite “obstructed views.” While further analysis of the causation study identifies other explanations for intersection mishaps as the false assumption of other’s actions, misjudgment of a gap or other’s speed, and inadequate surveillance followed by illegal maneuvers. In the case of surveillance, illegal actions were 6 times more likely to occur if drivers recognized that there was no surveillance in place.

Highway Traffic Safety Administration Statistics

Photo credit to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

Car Accident Risks With Left-Hand Turns

As noted by AAA’s Everyday Driving Challenges, “Making a left-hand turn can be risky, especially if you’re attempting to drive across oncoming traffic. If your judgment is off or your visibility compromised, making a left-hand without traffic light may be dangerous”, or as in the Lake Stevens crash, fatal.

Tips to Prevent a Pedestrian or Car Accident When Making a Left Turn:

  • Yield the right of way to other traffic.
  • ALWAYS Signal for the left-hand turn at least 150 feet in advance of the intersection.
  • Make sure there are no other vehicles, bicycles, motorcycles, or pedestrians in your path. Be ready to yield to anyone in the crosswalk.
  • Allow plenty of time to maneuver your vehicle from a stopped position across the traffic lanes.
  • Begin turning when your vehicle’s front wheels are in line with the center of the street you are entering. If you are turning from a one-way street onto another one-way street, begin your left-hand turn when the curb starts to curve.
  • If you want to turn left at a traffic light that does not have a left-turn arrow, consider continuing through to make three right-hand turns around the block, allowing you to use the traffic light to go straight across. Learn more about taking left-hand turns here.

At certain times of the day, intersections can be more congested than usual, with high volumes of traffic making a turn an operational nightmare!  Be patient! Good driving habits and a watchful eye will make it easier to avoid collisions on the road, and especially in those busy intersections.

Our Car Accident Lawyers are Here to Help

If you or someone you know was in an auto accident or personal injury accident, contact Fielding Law Group today, for a free legal consultation. When another motorist acts negligently, violating traffic laws, or failing in any way to drive safely, we can help you recover and receive the compensation you deserve. Remember–Don’t let an accident wreck YOU!