Just as in rear-end collision cases, left turn accidents often take little to no effort when determining fault. Even though many people try to avoid them, it is extremely difficult to navigate without making them. While drivers are expected to know how to properly make these turns, many people still struggle with them. Certain rules apply to left turns that don’t apply to right turns, and some people either forget this information or just don’t care. These types of mistakes have devastating consequences, from a damaged vehicle to catastrophic injuries, to a wrongful death.
At Ybarra Maldonado Law Group in Phoenix, we handle all sorts of personal injury cases on a daily basis. Our attorneys dedicate themselves to aggressively fighting for your rights as a victim, and we will always take the case to trial if necessary. Insurance companies know our firm, and they know we don’t settle for lowball offers. If you or a loved one suffered injuries from a left turn car accident in Phoenix, you need the Ybarra Maldonado Law Group on your side. To schedule your free consultation, call our office today at 602-910-4040, or fill out our online intake form.
What to Do After a Left Turn Accident?
Phoenix, Arizona is a bustling city. Accidents happen all the time, and we understand how stressful they can be. However, there are important steps to remember anytime you are involved in a car accident. Below, we outline the most important steps you can take to help your personal injury case.
- Stop your vehicle. No matter how minor the crash, you must stop and exchange your information with the other driver. Even in cases where the other driver is not in their car, you must leave a clearly visible note with your information. Failing to do so is illegal in the state of Arizona. Even after a non-injury car accident, this is necessary.
- Notify the police. Make sure they take a statement from everyone involved, and get a copy of the police report. This will help with your case.
- Exchange information. With the other drivers involved, trade your names, addresses, driver’s license numbers, vehicle registrations, and insurance information.
- Collect witness statements. There is always the potential for witnesses when it comes to a car accident. Potential witnesses include pedestrians, drivers or passengers in other vehicles, and people in nearby buildings. Try to take statements from as many witnesses as possible, and get their contact information.
- Seek medical attention. Even if the accident was minor, you should still visit a doctor. Sometimes, injuries are not immediately noticeable, and could cause problems later.
- Speak with an attorney. Before you ever speak with anyone else about the incident, hire an experienced Phoenix car accident attorney. The more information they have to work with and the less you say to others, the better off your case will be.
Who is at Fault in an Accident Left Turns?
In most cases, the driver making the left hand turn is at fault. Most states, including Arizona, adhere to a law which states that left-turning drivers must yield to oncoming traffic. This is true except in cases where the oncoming traffic has stop signs or traffic lights that they must stop for. In the following sections, we explain why left turn accidents are so complex, as well as why they often result in worse accidents than right turns.
Are You Always At Fault When Turning Left?
In most cases, yes. As we stated above, most states abide by laws that state that left-turning drivers must yield to oncoming traffic. However, there are some notable exceptions. These exceptions usually occur when the driver not making the left turn exercises poor judgment.
- Sometimes, drivers operate vehicles above the speed limit. While this is hard to prove at times, reckless drivers who are found to have been speeding at the time of the accident will be at least partially at fault.
- If a driver runs a red light, they have broken a traffic law. In this situation, they may be liable if they collide with a left-turning vehicle.
- Unexpected things happen. If an animal, cyclist or pedestrian darts into the road unexpectedly, a driver might stop or swerve suddenly.
Why Are Left Turn Accidents So Deadly?
Certain aspects of turning left make it more dangerous than turning right. Below, we discuss some of the reasoning behind the danger of left turns.
- These turns require more thought and mental energy than right turns. Making left turns while fatigued is even more difficult.
- Left turns require drivers to cross at least one other lane of traffic.
- Sometimes, left turns disturb the flow of traffic.
- During a left turn, many drivers have limited views of the traffic around them.
- Some drivers accelerate during left turns, which increases the risk of collisions.
- Not every driver uses their turn signals religiously, but left turns require them.
- Left turns require awareness of traffic from every other direction of traffic.
How to Win a Left Turn Accident Case in Phoenix?
So how do you win your left turn accident case? Easily. As long as you prove that you were not in the wrong during the accident, you’ve won. If the other driver attempts to dispute your claims, then we present your evidence and prove that you followed the traffic laws. Pieces of evidence we will present include police reports, witness statements, camera footage, and damage patterns of all vehicles involved. Witness statements are particularly useful for your case. They help to confirm your own statements, and could provide evidence against the other driver. Always keep in mind that the sooner you take witness statements, the more detailed they are. Memories fade with time, so make sure to gather as many statements as possible right after the accident.
Injured in a Left Turn Accident?
If you or a loved one got hurt in a left turn accident, you need the aggressive Phoenix personal injury lawyers at Ybarra Maldonado Law Group. Left turn cases are usually easy to resolve, but things become complicated when the other driver tries to deny your side of the story. We’re here to represent you, get fair compensation for your injuries, and get your life back on track. To schedule your complimentary consultation, call our Phoenix office at 602-910-4040.