Unsafe lane changes are responsible for a high number of accidents each year. According to statistics for 2017 by the Insurance Information Institute, 7.3 percent of all traffic collisions that year were caused by unsafe lane changes, which resulted in about 3,900 fatalities and an unknown number of injuries. Good driving habits are important to keep yourself and others safe on California roads. Since millions of people are injured each year because of negligent drivers, learning the causes of unsafe lane changes can help make a motorist or truck driver more aware so that they can avoid these actions.
Trucking Law Firm for Collisions Caused by Unsafe Lane Changes
David Azizi has practiced as a personal injury lawyer in Los Angeles and surrounding areas for more than 23 years. His diligence, hard work and compassion toward his clients have helped them win compensation to pay for their lost wages, medical bills and for their pain and suffering. This is one of the reasons why Super Lawyers, the legal ranking firm, refers to him as one of the top personal injury lawyers in the area. If you lost a family member or suffered an injury due to negligence, call David at (800) 991-5292 in order to schedule your no-obligation, free case review.
David can evaluate your accident to see if you have a claim and give you an estimate of how much you might recover in compensation as well as what options are open to you. David can also be reached online at his website by leaving a message, and he will call you back.
What Causes Unsafe Lane Changes?
Motorists and truck drivers trust that others sharing the roads are doing so using common sense along with a duty of care and are avoiding actions that could endanger others. Unfortunately, all too often, it isn’t true, and this is what leads to accidents. Even though a motorist or truck driver trusts that the vehicles to the left and right as well as those in front and back are acting responsibly, the motorist has to drive defensively. Even then, accidents do happen and can cause serious injuries or result in fatalities. Some of the actions that can contribute to an unsafe lane change include:
- Cell phone use: A motorist who is texting or talking on their cell phone is guilty of distracted driving, and although using a handheld phone in California while driving is illegal, it is still a common practice. In addition, studies have shown that using a hands-free phone while driving isn’t much safer. Motorists are much safer on the road if they wait until their vehicle is stopped to make a call. Better yet, turn your phone off while driving, and you can avoid temptation. Just a momentary distraction can cause a motorist or truck driver to drift into the next lane, causing a collision.
- Weather: Icy, snowy or wet roads can make driving treacherous and lead to an accident. It is particularly dangerous if a driver is attempting to make a lane change. By speeding up or when passing across oil-slicked pavement, it can cause the driver to lose control or start sliding, which can cause an accident.
- Poorly aligned mirrors: Not having a clear view of surrounding traffic is a common cause of unsafe lane changes. It is important that a motorist have their mirrors correctly aligned before setting out. Trying to adjust a mirror while driving is dangerous.
- Blind spots: Poorly aligned mirrors can contribute to an unsafe lane change that can lead to an accident, but blind spots on a vehicle can also give a driver the mistaken impression that it’s safe to move over. In passenger vehicles, the blind spots can include the pillars, windshield, headrests and dash. In big rigs, the blind spots are enormous. A truck driver cannot see for 20 feet in front, 30 feet in back, along about half the length of the trailer on the left side and for two entire lanes on the right. That makes it easy for the driver to make an unsafe lane change.
- Other types of distracted driving: People often eat while driving because they don’t want to take the time to stop for a meal or snack. Other distractions include changing a radio station, accessing GPS or even applying makeup or shaving while behind the wheel. These activities can cause the motorist to make an unsafe lane change or drift into another lane.
- Drunk or drugged driving: Drunk or drugged drivers lack coordination, judgment and have affected vision. This can cause them to make an unsafe lane change because they don’t realize another vehicle is in the way.
- Not using the turn signal: Turn signals warn other drivers when a motorist is wanting to change lanes. If the driver does not use a turn signal, a motorist in the next lane may not know to slow down to give them room to enter.
- Cargo is loaded in the vehicle: A vehicle that isn’t carefully packed when hauling cargo can obstruct the driver’s vision, which makes it unsafe to change lanes.
Ways to Avoid Making an Unsafe Lane Change
Avoiding making an unsafe lane change is an easy fix. Caution is critical because risking that no one is coming in the lane the driver intends to move into is dangerous and could lead to an accident. Some suggestions on how to avoid making an unsafe lane change include:
- Install extra mirrors if your vehicle does not permit you to have a clear view of traffic.
- Only change one lane at a time. Changing multiple lanes at once increases the risk of an accident.
- Use your turn signals. There are some motorists who will speed up to pass another driver if they see a turn signal on. However, those drivers would probably speed up anyway and could cause a crash.
- Don’t cut off another vehicle while changing lanes. This is a good way to cause a collision.
- Don’t speed in order to change lanes.
- Don’t make illegal lane changes. If a solid line is present, wait until your vehicle reaches a dashed line to make your move. Solid lines are there for a reason – to help keep you safe.
- Never change lanes inside or just outside an intersection. Intersections are dangerous enough with traffic passing through from multiple directions and being even more complicated because of pedestrians or bicycle riders.
Free Case Review for Unsafe Lane Change Truck Accident Cases
When someone else’s negligence causes an injury, David firmly believes the injured party should not have to bear the financial brunt of all the expenses associated with it. His diligence, knowledge of the law and strong work ethic helps him win 98 percent of all his cases. You can contact David 24 hours a day, seven days a week following your accident caused by negligence. It is important to contact him right away because evidence can be lost or covered up, which can affect your ability to place a claim. You can also get in touch with him by leaving a message on the online contact form, and he will contact you as soon as possible.
Get started today by calling (800) 991-5292.