Unsafe lane changes are a leading cause of vehicle accidents, though this is a type of driving maneuver that most individuals carry out regularly. Changing lanes can be challenging, particularly when there is plenty of traffic on the roadway or the speed limit is higher. Here, we want to discuss safe versus unsafe lane changing in California in the hopes that drivers refresh their memories on one of the most important topics of driver’s education.
It Seems Obvious, But Reminders Are Helpful
When most people begin their driving careers, one of the first things they learn is how to use a turn signal, check their mirrors, and change lanes appropriately. A lane change is an action that most drivers perform at least once every time they head out on the roadway. Unfortunately, unsafe lane changes can lead to various types of accidents, including sideswipe incidents, unexpected rear-end collisions, and even incidents where drivers end up sliding off the roadway or into oncoming traffic to avoid a collision.
Studies into safe versus unsafe lane changing have uncovered some interesting findings. A questionnaire of more than 400 individuals found that approximately 23% of them admitted to performing a risky and sudden lane change in the past. Approximately 57% of the respondents said that there is sudden lane change was due to driver distraction, mainly distractions due to other people in the vehicle or using a mobile device.
Additionally, 21% of the participants reported that they rarely, if ever, use turn signals, and another 6.7% said they sometimes or rarely ever look in their mirrors before changing lanes. A staggering 16.3% admitted to not paying attention to their blind spots.
The study concluded that unsafe lane changes are typically caused by drivers who are distracted and fail to check their blind spots and mirrors or even fail to use turn signals at all.
A safe lane change is one in which a driver activates their turn signal, checks their rear-view and side-view mirrors, looks directly into their blind spots, and changes lanes only when there is an open space to move to.
An Unsafe Lane Change and Compensation After an Accident
Individuals who are harmed due to another driver failing to change lanes safely may be able to recover compensation for their losses. Those who sustain injuries or property damage expenses can file an insurance claim or civil personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver, but that does not mean the process of recovering compensation will be easy.
Proving fault after an unsafe lane change accident can be difficult. The crash victim will need to gather as much evidence as possible in order to prove that the incident was caused by an unsafe lane change. This evidence can include photographs taken at the scene of the incident showing where the property damage occurred, as well as photos of any debris, skid marks, and flow of traffic. Additionally, information from vehicle black box data, video surveillance footage, and eyewitnesses can also help paint a picture of how an unsafe lane change accident occurred.
We strongly encourage you to reach out to a skilled vehicle accident lawyer in California who can examine the facts of your case and help you move forward with recovering the compensation you need.