Knowing how to drive means more than simply understanding how to operate a motor vehicle. It’s also essential to have a full understanding of the rules of the road, including traffic laws related to intersections. An intersection is any section of roadway where at least streets cross or join. According to data from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), over 50% of all accidents occur in intersections, accounting for 25% of traffic fatalities.
Failure to follow the rules of right of way at intersections is a major cause of accidents in Seattle and throughout Washington. Not following these important traffic laws not only puts a driver and other motorists on the road at risk of an accident but also leaves the negligent driver liable for damages.
It’s important to know when you have the right of way and when you must yield the right of way at every type of intersection found in Seattle and throughout Washington.
Stoplights may seem like the simplest of intersections since everyone knows that they must apply caution on yellow, stop on red, and go on green, but there are some lesser-understood rules that apply to the right of way at intersections with stoplights. For instance:
Distracted driving is a major contributor to accidents in intersections with stoplights when an inattentive driver drives through a red light.
When there is no signal light present at an intersection, it’s important to know the rules of right of way. For instance:
While several states have laws specifically prohibiting changing lanes within 100 yards of an intersection, it’s legal to change lanes in an intersection in Washington; however, drivers should only change lanes in an intersection if they remain vigilant of other drivers approaching the intersection since law enforcement could still ticket them for making an unsafe lane change. If you have questions about a car accident that resulted from an improper turn, contact a Seattle car accident lawyer.
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