Intersection Accidents and Injuries

Published on Apr 23, 2024 at 8:01 pm in Car Accidents.

Intersections are where two or more roads intersect. At these locations, vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists cross paths. Unfortunately, intersections are also one of the most common locations for accidents and collisions to occur.

Sometimes, these crashes can lead to severe injuries and even fatalities. Whether you’re a driver, bicyclist, or pedestrian, you must be aware of these areas’ potential dangers.

At Prince Law Firm, we have seen many accidents occur throughout Marion and the surrounding communities. Let’s take a look at the various aspects of these accidents and the injuries that they can cause.

Types of Accidents at Intersections

Any crash at an intersection can be very dangerous. According to the Federal Highway Association, about one–quarter of traffic fatalities and one–half of all traffic injuries in the United States happen at intersections.

One of the most common types of car accidents is a rear-end collision. This can occur when one vehicle hits the back of another car. Often, if the other driver is not paying attention, is following too closely, or is distracted, their vehicle will collide with the one in front of them.

A T-bone collision, also known as a side-impact collision, is another type of intersection accident, where one vehicle hits another on the side at a perpendicular angle. These incidents can cause major injuries because the point of impact is near the driver or passenger side of the vehicle.

Pedestrians and bicyclists are also at risk at intersections. Whenever you cross a street, you need to be careful. Most pedestrian accidents happen when a person tries to cross a busy intersection. Vehicle versus pedestrian accidents can be deadly since the individual is not protected from the impact.

Like vehicles, bicyclists also cross a road or street at the intersection. Sometimes, vehicles may fail to yield to a cyclist, causing a collision. While bicyclists are protected from falls, they can still sustain serious injuries if a vehicle collides with them.

Causes of These Incidents

Unfortunately, intersection accidents are common on our roads and highways. These truck, motorcycle, or car accidents can be caused by a variety of factors.

One factor that almost always plays a role is driver behavior. Drivers may run red lights, speed, or engage in distracted driving behaviors, such as texting or using their phones while driving. All these habits increase the risk of accidents occurring at intersections.

Poor visibility is another factor, especially in pedestrian or bicyclist-related incidents. Obstructed views, glare from the sun, or poor weather conditions can cause the driver not to see another vehicle or person crossing the street. Many times, this can lead to crashes when the driver does not yield the right of way to these individuals.

If the intersection is located in a busy city or town, traffic congestion can factor into an accident. Heavy traffic can often be a source of frustration for many drivers. If they run late or are aggravated, these drivers might take risks on the road, including engaging in reckless behavior. They may try to turn on the red light or run a red light, all of which can lead to an accident.

Finally, inadequate signage or signalization can also contribute to intersection accidents. Drivers may not know the rules of the road or be aware of changes in traffic patterns. In turn, that can increase the risk of accidents occurring. It’s the responsibility of a government entity to make sure signs and signals are clearly visible and properly functioning.

Intersection Accident Injuries

Due to the nature and force of impact, these injuries can be severe and life-altering. Some of the most common ones sustained in these collisions include:

  • Head injuries: These can range from minor concussions to severe traumatic brain injuries (TBI). Many times, they can cause permanent damage and disabilities. Headaches, dizziness, confusion, memory loss, and seizures are just a few of the symptoms associated with these injuries.
  • Broken bones: Due to the impact of another vehicle, car accident victims can experience fractures of the arms, legs, ribs, and pelvis. Sometimes, they are severe and require surgery and rehabilitation to recover fully.
  • Spinal cord injuries: The neck and spine are susceptible to injuries. As a result of an intersection accident, a person may have paralysis, loss of sensation, and loss of function in various body parts. Often, these require long-term medical care and rehabilitation.
  • Permanent disabilities: Along with debilitating injuries to the head and spine, other permanent disabilities can affect a person’s ability to work, engage in daily activities, and enjoy life. Amputations, loss of vision or hearing, and cognitive impairments can be caused by an intersection accident.
  • Fatalities: In the worst-case scenario, intersection accidents can result in deaths. Bicyclists and drivers are at the highest risk, but drivers and passengers in other vehicles can also be killed in these crashes. Many times, speed plays a factor in these incidents. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 12,000 people lost their lives in speed-related crashes in 2021.

Determining Fault

Traffic laws are important to determine fault in case of an accident. Drivers are expected to follow the signals, signs, and right-of-way rules to ensure not only their safety but also the safety of other road users. For example, running a red light or stop sign violation often places the at-fault label on the driver who disregarded the signal.

Failure to yield to another vehicle or pedestrian with the right of way can also lead to fault.

Visibility at intersections is also not to be considered. If a driver can’t see another vehicle due to obstructions like parked cars or blind spots, the fault may be shared. In some left-turn accidents, the driver making a left turn is often considered at fault unless they had a green arrow or clear right of way.

Additionally, in rear-end collisions, the rear driver is usually at fault for not maintaining a safe following distance.

Intersection accidents can lead to serious injuries and even death. Unfortunately, most of these incidents could have been prevented if a driver slowed down or paid attention to the road.

If your family has been affected by an accident at an intersection, Prince Law Firm offers a free initial consultation for your case. We can help hold those negligent parties accountable for their actions.



Want to speak to an attorney? Unsure if you have a case? Fill out the form below and we’ll reach out to you as quickly as possible.