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What causes most crashes at intersections?

On Behalf of | Apr 19, 2022 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

At an intersection, cars, trucks, motorcycles and bicycles traveling in different directions approach the same space. It goes without saying that the risk of a crash at an intersection is high, and responsibility among drivers is crucial to avoid a catastrophe.

The top intersection issues relate to awareness of traffic

When you examine why collisions occur at intersections, almost all of the critical mistakes involve a lapse in judgment or a failure to notice something in time. Although weather or poor vehicle maintenance sometimes cause wrecks, most of the time, mistakes by drivers are to blame.

Not looking around at one’s surroundings is the top cause of crashes at intersections. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 44% of crashes at intersections can be attributed to drivers’ failure to survey their surroundings as they drive.

Other causes of accidents at intersections include:

  • Misjudging another driver’s intention
  • Turning with an obstructed view
  • Distraction
  • Misjudging the speed of another vehicle
  • Misjudging the distance between vehicles

Distraction is a significant cause of crashes at intersections, particularly due to use of cell phones. Many people cannot resist looking at their phone and texting while stopped at an intersection. After texting or checking messages, they may fail to start driving when they should or take off quickly, realizing the light has turned green and they are keeping people waiting.

Overall, paying close attention to your surroundings and the vehicles around you can help reduce the risk of a crash. Unfortunately, you don’t have control over other drivers’ behavior, so if someone else is distracted or otherwise causes an accident, you may need to look into your options for getting all the compensation you need from the insurance company. For more on that, please see our New Mexico Car Accident FAQ.