left turn accidents - whose fault?

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 07, 2008 4:07 pm   Post subject: left turn accidents - whose fault?  

I was going to make a left turn at an intersection where there is no left turn arrow. The lights were green but there was lot of incoming traffic, so I waited but smoothed into the middle of the intersection. When the green lights were turning into red, I made a quick left turn but got hit by a new BMW that rushed to go straight. Whose fault was it that caused this left turn accidents ?

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Vivian Yan

PostPosted: Sat Jun 07, 2008 5:24 pm   Post subject:   

Here is the thing... you're not clear on which direction the BMW was going. it could have been traveling the opposite direction that you were facing prior to your turn and running the yellow/red light or it could have been on the cross road and continued into the intersection once the light changed from red to green. From your description, I'll assume that the BMW was on the cross road.

There is actually a law that states a vehicle cannot enter an intersection unless they can clear that intersection. But with that being said, most people enter the intersection and stop for oncoming traffic. Usually this is not held against them... but it could be. From that drivers perspective, they entered the intersection with the intent to clear it but then got caught and had to stop for whatever reason. Certainly their intent was to clear it so did they really violate the law. There are also several other laws that apply. You were in control of the intersection and there is just no reason why the driver of the BMW should not have seen you and simply slowed or stopped. That is why I question where the BMW was coming from as it would really be a bonehead move not to see a big honkin' vehicle sitting in the intersection. Also either Last Clear Chance or comparative negligence applies. This means that the driver of the BMW had every opportunity to avoid the accident and you have very little. You were simply waiting to make sure you had a clear path to continue with your left turn so you could not have avoided the BMW... but certainly the BMW driver could have avoided your vehicle. Even though the BMW driver had the green light, he/she still needs to make _reasonably_ sure the intersection is clear.

But as with every accident the perspective of the BMW driver will need to be considered. That person may state that you were not in the intersection at the time the light turned green and only entered once your light turned red. That is, you were not clearly in the middle of the intersection when your light turned yellow and red and only entered once your light turned to red... in effect, running the red light. This I could understand as I don't see why anyone would simply drive into the side of a vehicle right in front of them.

Who's at fault...? Not enough information for left turn accidents, I must say. Do I think the carrier for the BMW driver will not end up accepting 100% liability? Correct. Also state laws come into play.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 09, 2008 11:50 am   Post subject:   

Whose fault?
Yours...more than likely...however, I too can see all kinds of comp neg coming up here.
I'll assume that the BMW was on the cross road.
I am assuming this vehicle would have been facing the OP, and going straight thru the intersection where the OP was turning...


"Never, never be afraid to do what's right, especially if the well being of a person or animal is at stake. Society's punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way." Martin Luther King Jr.
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