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Who is at Fault in a Left-Hand Turn Accident?

Car turning left just before another car is passing in oncoming traffic

Determining fault for left turn accident could seem a bit difficult. That is why it is very important to consult with a left hand turn personal injury attorney to better determine your case. Your experienced Los Angeles personal injury attorney will help determine fault and the best means of compensation for you. Left turn accidents are the most common in congested cities such as Los Angeles and Las Vegas. With heavy traffic, drivers are more likely to end up in a car accident. Below is an article that discusses liability in left turn accident, and how to pursue a left turn accident claim.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Association, a left-hand turn is one of the most dangerous actions a driver could take. Left hand turn accidents could result in very serious injuries, not only to drivers but also to passengers. It is very important that drivers understand their legal rights when involved in a left-handed turn accident. 61% of crashes that occur involve left turns and oncoming traffic.

Why is the Left-Handed Turn Dangerous?

There are several reasons why a left-handed turn can be very dangerous. One of the most common reasons is because there is oncoming traffic and it can be difficult to gauge how fast they are going when making the turn. Another reason is because a left-handed turn driver has to completely go through oncoming traffic. For example, many drivers who are making a left-handed term do not have patience for oncoming traffic. Another example could be that oncoming traffic could speed up even faster when seeing that the driver is making the left turn.

How to Properly Make a Left Turn

In order to properly make a left turn, the driver must drive close to the center divider line. They must make a left turn signal before approaching the light. The driver must stop and wait for oncoming traffic. Before making the left, the driver must look left and right to see if there are any other cars coming by. Drivers who are trying to make a left turn should also consider if making a left turn is in fact legal on that street. Several streets in California have made left turns illegal.

Who Has the Right of Way?

In California and Nevada, both states have passed laws that explain that oncoming traffic has the right of way. The driver making a left turn must yield to those oncoming cars in order to make their left turn. Although there are exceptions, the person making the left turn is almost always liable.

Usually, the driver that made the left turn is the one liable in the car accident. California state law requires that drivers who are making a left turn with a solid green light should wait until all oncoming traffic has passed. The person making the left turn has a duty to make sure there are no oncoming cars. The oncoming cars do not have to stop or slow down for those making a left turn. The law does not have protections for those who are making the left turn. But there are some circumstances where a driver making the left turn is not liable for the left turn accident. This can occur when the oncoming traffic runs a red light. The oncoming traffic will then be liable for colliding with the car that was trying to turn left. Other factors include unexpected circumstances such as animals on the road.

How to Determine Who is at Fault in a Left-Turn Accident?

If all parties are in dispute with one another as to who is liable for the accident, there are different accident reconstruction specialists who look into all evidence and determine who is liable. For example, one of the major factors that an accident specialist will look at is the damage to the cars. For example, if the damage is at the rear corner of the vehicle that was turning, that shows that the oncoming driver might be at fault since the car making the left turn was hit at the rear. This shows that oncoming driver had more time to see the car making a left turn.

What Causes Left-Hand Turn Accidents?

Because of its complexity, there are many different causes of left-hand turn accidents. Some common causes include:

  • Speeding: the oncoming traffic would be driving very fast, and the driver making the left turn would not be able to gauge the speed correctly
  • Failing to use a signal to turn
  • Distracted driving (on the cell phone or eating)
  • Failing to yield the right-of-way
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol

What Evidence is Needed in a Left-Turn Accident Lawsuit?

Your skilled personal injury accident attorney will require certain evidence in order to pursue your left turn accident claim. The more evidence, the more likely you are to win the lawsuit. Below are some examples of evidence that could help when determining left turn accident liability.

  • Police reports
  • Drug and alcohol test
  • Video footage
  • Statements from Witnesses

 What Can I Do to Avoid Left-Turn Accident?

Although an accident is not completely preventable, there are different steps drivers can practice in order to prevent getting involved in a left turn accident. Some practices include:

  • Always using turn signals
  • Driving within the speed limit
  • Making sure your brakes are meeting
  • Always look right and left when passing a stop sign

Contact an Experienced Left-Turn Accident Attorney Today

If you or your loved one have been involved in a left-handed turn accident, contact our skilled personal injury attorneys today for assistance litigating your claim. Car accidents, especially left turn accidents, could result in very severe injuries. We understand that you may be injured, and so we’ll take the stress of litigating off your shoulders as we focus on your legal claims. Contact us today for a no cost evaluation. We are located in almost every major city in California including Los Angeles, Sacramento, Irvine, and other locations throughout the state. If you are a driver making a left turn and believe that it was not your fault, contact our attorneys today to determine what other causes there were to prevent liability.

We make sure that our clients are aware of their legal rights and options when it comes to filing a left turn accident lawsuit. It is very important to seek the advice of an experienced left turn accident attorney that is within your area and is well-versed with the local traffic laws. We want to make sure that we understand all circumstances of your accident in order to pursue the maximum possible claim for you. Our attorneys are well-versed in Los Angeles traffic laws and will help you prepare and pursue your claim.

***Disclaimer: This page is created by Heidari Law Group for educational purposes. This article provides a general understanding of the law. It does not provide specific advice. By using this site and reading through this page, there is no attorney-client relationship created between you and any member of Heidari Law. Further, due to the constant change of the law, some parts of the information above may no longer be good law.

Sam Heidari

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Sam Heidari

Sam Ryan Heidari

Sam Heidari is the founding principal of Heidari Law Group, a law firm specializing in personal injury, wrongful death, and employment law with offices in California and Nevada. Sam Heidari has been practicing law for over 11 years and handles a wide range of cases including car accidents, wrongful death, employment discrimination, and product liability. The Heidari Law Group legal firm is known for its comprehensive approach, handling cases from initial consultation through to final judgment. Sam Heidari is dedicated to community involvement and advocacy for civil liberties.

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