Motorists have the duty to act responsibly while driving. On occasion, a person will witness a nearby driver breaking a traffic law or engaging in risky driving behaviors. One of the most dangerous actions to witness is wrong-way driving.
Wrong-way driving occurs when someone drives in the wrong direction on a highway or other roadway. A wrong-way driver has the potential to come face to face with another vehicle traveling in the correct direction, which is a serious encounter that can result in a severe head-on collision.
Wrong-way car accidents are one of the top causes of fatal crashes. Often unintentional, wrong-way driving is the cause of 300 to 400 fatal accidents every year, according to data collected by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA).
What Factors Lead to Wrong-Way Driving Incidents?
Wrong-way accidents are usually attributed to some type of driver impairment or distraction. Wrong-way driving is often carried out by drivers under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Drowsy driving can be another factor, as well as driving in low visibility conditions, like dangerous rainstorms.
Drivers with mental disorders, including dementia and psychosis, are at particular risk for wrong-way driving incidents. Also, wrong-way accidents happen to drivers who simply make mistakes on unfamiliar roads. When a driver misses or misunderstands road signs or markings, they may even accidentally enter an exit ramp.
What Measures Can be Taken to Prevent Wrong-Way Driving Accidents?
Clear markings, well-placed road signs, and thoughtful road designs are needed to prevent wrong-way driving accidents. Many traffic officials have experimented with measures that were specifically designed to keep drivers from entering roadways in the wrong direction. Some preventative actions include:
- Enhanced lighting and signage in high-risk locations.
- Clear pavement markings to indicate traffic flow.
- Better road design, including improved spacing between ramps.
- Electronic signs that alert drivers.
- Spikes set into a road’s surface to keep vehicles from continuing in the wrong direction.
- Videos and sensors to electronically recognize wrong-way driving.
What Should I Do if a See a Wrong-Way Driver?
If someone witnesses a wrong-way driver, they need to get out of their way as soon as possible. If it is safe to do so, a motorist should pull over to the side of the road, and let the wrong-way driver pass. Once the wrong-way driver is not in sight, a witness should report the incident to local authorities.
If a motorist is hit by a wrong-way driver, they should contact a lawyer right away. A lawyer will help a victim successfully file a personal injury claim.
Brooklyn Car Crash Lawyers at Eaton & Torrenzano Assist Victims Injured in Dangerous Wrong-Way Car Wrecks
Wrong-way car accidents often lead to severe injuries. If you were hurt in a wrong-way accident, speak to one of our Brooklyn car crash lawyers at Eaton & Torrenzano right away. We help car accident victims obtain compensation for injuries and vehicular damage. Complete our online form or call us at 718-332-7766 for a free consultation. Located in Brooklyn and Staten Island, New York, as well as Hillsborough, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout Kings County and Richmond County, including Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, the Bronx, and Manhattan.