How to Avoid Intersection Accidents

How to Avoid Intersection Accidents

Valparaiso has recently installed several Roundabouts and we thought it prudent to provide some tips.  Even if you drive through intersections numerous times a day, there are still dangers lurking at every corner. Intersections present major dangers for drivers. Most accidents can be avoidable if drivers follow the right precautions for how to avoid intersection accidents.

Leave Room 

When nearing an intersection, you should leave plenty of distance between your car and the car in front of you. That way, you have enough time to brake without colliding, especially if the car in front of you has to brake harder than they were anticipating. When you are stopping to an intersection, keep the extra space between your vehicle and the car ahead of you. There is no need to pull up directly behind other cars or right to the line if you are at the front of the pack. This will ensure that, if you were to be rear-ended, you would not collide with the car in front of you or be pushed too far into the intersection. 

Scan Before Driving 

Avoid trusting traffic light signals only. Just because you have a green light does not mean it is safe to drive. Often, drivers can be distracted or their actions may be delayed. Quickly scan the road before driving again to assess if the road is clear. If you are approaching an already green light, slowing down for a quick scan is a good practice in case the light changes quickly or a distracted driver misses a red light.  

Yellow Lights Aren’t a Race 

Yellow lights are not intended for you to speed up and race through them. In fact, this can be quite dangerous. Hitting the gas to make it through a red light can result in a pedestrian collision or running into other vehicles if you cut it too close. Slowing down when you see yellow light is worth avoiding what could be a deadly accident. 

Roundabouts  

Roundabouts are tricky alternatives to traditional intersections that can be equally as dangerous. Since they are a less common form of an intersection, many people are unaware of how to properly use a roundabout. If you come across a roundabout, it is best to slow down, keep your distance from other cars, and follow the traffic pattern to stay safe.  

If you drive every day, you most likely do not think of all the dangers surrounding you at all times on the road. Intersections are designed to keep traffic flowing safely, but they present serious collision hazards. Learning how to avoid intersection accidents will keep you and others on the road safe.

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Sue Baxter