Left Hand Turn Accidents

By Mark T. Flickinger, JD on February 22, 2019

Left hand turn lanesCar accidents can cause serious damages, including bodily injuries, emotional distress, and mounting financial burdens.

When a person recklessly makes a left-hand turn, it can cause life changing injuries for which victims deserve to be fairly compensated. At Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton, our attorneys offer legal aid to those who have been injured in a left-hand turn accident in the Provo, UT area. If you have been injured in a car accident, we invite you to contact our attorneys to learn more about your legal options.

Left Hand Turns and Right of Way

When making a left-hand turn, drivers do not have to yield to others if there is a left turn arrow. If there is no left turn arrow, drivers wishing to make a left at a green light must wait until there is no oncoming traffic, pedestrians, or cyclists, or the oncoming traffic is far enough away to allow for safe turning.

If there is no traffic light, drivers making left hand turns must give the right of way to oncoming traffic, including pedestrians and cyclists.

At four way stops, the driver who arrived at the stop first should be given the right of way, even if the person wants to make a left turn.

Are Those Making Left Hand Turns Always Liable for An Accident?

Because many left-hand turns occur where drivers turning left need to yield to oncoming traffic, it stands to reason that a large number of left-hand turn accidents are caused by the driver making the turn. While many left-hand turn accidents are caused by the turning driver, this is not always the case.

When Might a Left Turn Driver Not Be at Fault?

There are a few scenarios in which a driver making a left-hand turn may not be at fault for an accident, such as:

  • A driver ran a red light or stop sign: Drivers who run a red light or stop sign are almost always considered at fault if a car accident occurs. This holds true when a person making a left-hand turn has a green arrow, allowing him or her to turn while oncoming traffic has a red light. A person turning left after stopping at a stop sign may not be at fault if he or she is hit by someone who failed to stop at the stop sign.
  • The oncoming vehicle was recklessly speeding: Although it can be difficult to prove without witnesses, a person making a left-hand turn may not be held at fault if the oncoming vehicle was significantly speeding.
  • Unforeseen hazards: In some cases, an unforeseen hazard, such as another car running a red light, or a large tree branch falling, may develop after a driver begins making a left hand turn while it was safe. Such hazards can cause the left turning driver to slow or stop, which in turn can lead to an oncoming car to hit the left turning driver. In such cases, the oncoming car may be held responsible.

Contact a Car Accident Attorney

If you have been involved in a car accident, it is important to have an experienced car accident attorney on your side. At Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton, our attorneys will work on your behalf to secure the maximum compensation for your injuries and property damage. To schedule a time for a case review, please call our team at (801) 370-0505.

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