Who Is At Fault in a Car Accident Caused by Changing Lanes?
Every day in the United States, thousands of people drive through the streets, avenues, and highways—people heading to work, school, shopping, and a myriad of different activities. Unfortunately, many of these drivers tend to drive automatically, without stopping to think that many of the movements they make routinely and with such ease may cause an accident.
To determine responsibility for an accident, several things are taken into account, such as traffic signs, who has the right of way, if speed limits were obeyed, if car indicator signs were used correctly, if drivers were intoxicated and/or if they were driving negligently, among others.
One of the accidents that creates the most confusion when determining liability is a collision caused by a person changing lanes. What happens in these kinds of situations? Who is to blame? In general terms, the person who makes a lane change and who causes a collision with another will be the one held responsible for the accident.
Before changing lanes, a driver should:
- Check the rear-view mirrors.
- Check blind spots around their car by looking over their shoulder.
- Observe the speed of the cars that travel in the lane that they wish to change to
- Use the corresponding signaling of their car to warn others that they will change lanes and turn it off when they have done so.
- Change lanes one at a time and not several at the same time
- And when they think it is safe to change lanes, they can do it cautiously.
Changing lanes without taking the precaution of carrying out the points mentioned above can result in a terrible accident. We must remember that all drivers have a duty of care towards the people who drive around us. And that we must exercise this duty of care at all times.
Driving on highways, where the speed tends to be higher, can be more dangerous, especially when two people want to change to the same lane, at the same time, and from opposite lanes. This could result in a crash involving more than two drivers, and the responsibility could be shared: 50% for both drivers. So remember to always drive carefully and in a state of alert, observing all the driving around you.