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Whether you live in a rural or urban area in Tennessee, you undoubtedly encounter several intersections during your daily commute. Because these areas of roadway can be dangerous for drivers, the movements of vehicles at intersections are often coordinated by traffic lights, stop signs, and yield signs. When drivers fail to heed these signs and slow down or stop at intersections, innocent people like you can be involved in serious accidents that cause serious injuries.
At Matt Hardin Law, our Nashville intersection accident lawyers know that intersections are one of the most common accident sites on roadways in Tennessee, and that’s why police officers throughout the state strongly enforce traffic laws at stop signs and traffic lights. When drivers fail to slow down or stop at intersections, they’re not just violating traffic laws—they also may become liable for the expenses incurred by anyone who is injured due to their careless behavior.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration studied traffic accidents at intersections and found that certain circumstances and driver errors frequently lead to collisions. These factors include:
Turning left at intersections—especially at stop signs and traffic lights without left turn arrows or signals—can be risky for all drivers. When drivers make left turns at large intersections, they may need to cross multiple lanes of traffic. That means they are exposed and vulnerable to drivers who make U-turns, drivers traveling in the opposite direction, and drivers who run red lights or fail to stop at stop signs. When visibility is limited at intersections due to rain, fog, darkness, or elevation changes, the risk of making left turns increases.
Reaching a destination as quickly as possible is a common goal for many drivers. That means that traffic lights are often seen as an impediment rather than a necessary safety feature. When drivers are more focused on “beating” a light then driving safely, they may accelerate when the light turns yellow or red. Doing so can put them at risk of crashing into other vehicles at the intersection.
What looks like a clear approach through an intersection when drivers are 100 yards away can quickly turn into a situation where multiple vehicles have slowed down or stopped at a red light. Driving while texting, changing radio stations, talking on the phone, or reaching for something in a glove box is all takes for drivers to miss a light change and be unable to slow down or stop in time, putting them at serious risk of rear-ending the vehicles in front of them and causing chain-reaction crashes.
Although U-turns and turning right on red are generally permitted at intersections in Tennessee, there are certain locations where they are prohibited due to the dangers of performing such maneuvers. When drivers ignore posted signs and warnings that indicate these maneuvers are illegal, they can put themselves, their passengers, and other drivers at serious risk of collisions.
Tennessee law requires that all drivers come to complete stops before passing through intersections where stop signs are present. However, many drivers slow down only momentarily before proceeding. Failing to come to a complete stop means that drivers may not fully scan the intersection before entering it, which can lead to serious T-bone accidents and even head-on collisions.
After a collision at an intersection, it’s important to determine who was at fault—especially when victims suffer serious injuries. At Matt Hardin Law, our legal team has more than two decades of experience building strong claims for auto accident victims like you. We know how to collect evidence, interview witnesses, and piece together information to find out who was at fault. Then, we’ll use our legal experience to make sure you and your loved ones get the compensation you deserve.
Don’t let an intersection accident that wasn’t your fault put your family in a bind. Medical bills can quickly add up when you’re too hurt to go back to work, but we’ll do everything we can to help you get through this difficult time. To speak with our Nashville auto accident attorneys today, just dial (615) 200-1111 or complete a free online consultation form.