Why Do So-Called “Wrong Way” Car Accidents Ever Occur?
Wrong-way accidents are some of the most catastrophic collisions on the road, often leading to terrible or fatal injuries. These crashes are typically caused by negligent driving, whether driver intoxication, driver error, or distraction.
Given the costs incurred in the aftermath of such an accident, pursuing a personal injury claim and much-needed compensation for injuries and other losses is crucial.
Causes of Wrong-Way Accidents
According to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), a major cause of wrong-way vehicle accidents occurs when a driver makes the mistake of entering an exit ramp. Other common causes of wrong-way accidents include:
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Distracted driving, including texting and driving, zoning out, and eating and driving
- Lack of visibility, such as heavy rain or fog, could make it difficult for drivers to see road signs and markings
- Drivers who are unfamiliar with an area
- Fatigued vehicle operators
- Poorly designed roads, including inadequately placed signs, bad ramp designs, and confusing signage
- Vehicle malfunctions, such as blown-out tires or a faulty GPS, could lead drivers down the wrong side of the road
Although there are many causes of wrong-way accidents, it is estimated that more than half are caused by intoxicated drivers. That is why many of these incidents also take place either during the weekend or late in the evening, between midnight and 3 a.m.
Consequences of Wrong-Way Accidents
Wrong-way accidents typically result in head-on-crashes, which is why they are far more likely to result in life-altering or fatal injuries. Survivors are often left to cope with lifelong health complications that make it impossible to live the life they once knew.
These are some of the injuries frequently sustained in wrong-way accidents:
- Head and neck injuries, such as a traumatic brain injury or whiplash
- Internal injuries, including damage done to organs in the abdomen and chest
- Spinal cord injuries, which could cause partial or complete paralysis
- Broken bones, including the ribs, legs, pelvis, arms, and collarbones
- Injuries to the face, especially the eyes
- Severe burns caused by fire, explosions, or chemicals
These types of accidents are incredibly severe and, according to the NTSB, are 12 times more likely to result in severe or fatal injuries compared to other crashes.
Preventing Wrong-Way Accidents
There are many things that could be done to help reduce and prevent wrong-way accidents. Highway signs and pavement markings could be improved, making it easier for drivers to identify where they are going and if they are driving on the right side of the road.
Drivers can also help prevent these accidents by remaining alert and not letting any distractions interfere with their driving. Given how often alcohol contributes to these accidents, it is important for drivers to remain sober or arrange for safe transportation if they plan to drink. Prescription medication could also contribute to these accidents, so do not drive if the side effects could impact your ability to operate a vehicle.
Were You Injured in a Long Beach Wrong-Way Accident?
If you sustained injuries in a Long Beach wrong-way accident, don’t hesitate to contact The Law Firm of Joseph H. Low IV for experienced representation. Our Long Beach wrong-way car accident lawyer has extensive personal injury experience and is known for our commitment to effective and skilled legal counsel. We’re here to help you get the compensation you deserve.
Founding attorney Joseph H. Low IV has a reputation for legal excellence with a “10.0 Superb” Avvo rating. Joseph Low is a trial lawyer first and foremost, and as a former U.S. Marine, he has the tenacity to take on big corporations and fight on your behalf.
Call (562) 901-0840 today for a complimentary consultation.