Intersections are the main focus of car accidents, probably because so many vehicles congregate in one area to turn right or left or straight and where traffic lights or stop signs are often present. This meeting of traffic, traffic signs and lights and turning lanes present ample opportunities for accidents, especially in urban areas like Leominster.
Known for its plastics industry and once called “Comb City” in the latter part of the 19th Century, Routes 12 and 2 pass through town. Interstate 9 has its starting or ending point here. Leominster is also the home of Tupperware and has other large manufacturing companies within its borders. Many people who work in nearby Boston and Worcester find Leominster an attractive place to live.
While driving through this small city of over 41,000, however, you might come to the intersection of Main and Hamilton, in Leominster, where from 2013 to 2015, there were 95 car accidents.
Factors in Intersection Accidents
Intersection accidents rank only second to rear end collisions in the factors that explain a car accident. In a 2008 study conducted by the National Automotive Sampling System General Estimates System, about 40% of all auto crashes occur at intersections. Causes include:
- Making an unsafe left or right turn
- Failure to notice that an approaching vehicle has no stop sign or signal
- Turning into a bicycle lane occupied by an bicyclist
- Not stopping at a stop sign or red traffic signal
- Obstructed view of traffic
- Poor highway design
- Parked cars that obstruct view
An intersection that was once safe may become dangerous because too much traffic has accumulated and municipalities and their highway departments failed to recognize or appreciate that the intersection now has a high accident rate. For example, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that separate left turn lanes can reduce car accidents by 30%. Accordingly, a Leominster car accident lawyer can investigate the circumstances of your accident and possibly uncover more than one party that played a role in your accident.
Liability for an accident at an intersection can be difficult to prove at times. Many of these involve a motorist driving through a red traffic signal. Unless you have an independent witness to corroborate your version, you may have a difficult time collecting compensation if you were injured. If you are lucky and the intersection had a camera, then your Leominster car accident lawyer could obtain a video showing that the other party did indeed proceed on a red traffic signal.
Vehicles that arrive at an intersection will take their turns in the order of who arrived first. If it is simultaneous, then the vehicle on the right usually will proceed first, though there is no written traffic code on this circumstance. If a collision does occur, both parties may have difficulty proving who had the right of way.
In some cases, the location of the property damage can indicate that one vehicle was travelling at a high rate of speed or that one vehicle was almost through the intersection or had nearly completed its turn when it was struck, possibly indicating that the other motorist was negligent in proceeding.
In any case where liability is disputed, contact an experienced Leominster car accident lawyer who can investigate the facts and circumstances, retrieve video surveillance tapes at the intersection if available, or possibly have an expert review the property damage to determine the location of the vehicles when struck. If roadway design is a possible contributing factor, then an expert will be needed to ascertain if the governmental entity responsible for the road design and maintenance failed to adhere to certain standards.
Damages in an Intersection Accident
The amount of compensation you may recover in a car accident is dependent on the seriousness of your injury, whether it is permanent, and if they prevented you from working or engaging in certain activities.
Injuries range from back and neck strains to broken limbs, severed limbs, spinal injuries, damage to internal organs, traumatic brain injury, and disfigurement.
Damages in a car accident case generally include these categories:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Past and future income loss
- Loss of earning capacity
- Diminished quality of life
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma
- Spousal claim for loss of consortium
Retain the Law Firm of Burns and Jain
If you are involved in a Leominster intersection accident, contact a Leominster car accident lawyer at the Burns and Jain Law Firm. Liability can often be in dispute as well as the nature and extent of your injuries, which requires the services of seasoned injury lawyers to handle your claim. Do not hesitate to call Burns and Jain at (617) ) 227-7423 as soon as possible after your accident so that valuable evidence can be preserved and your claim thoroughly investigated.