Jun 29

The Deadly Risks of Making A Left Turn at An Intersection


dangers of making a left turnMaking a left turn at an intersection can result in a deadly car accident. Sadly, it did in St Petersburg on Saturday evening.

According to the Tampa Bay Times, an 11-year-old boy was killed and three others were injured when a car headed south on 34th Street S collided with a northbound car turning left in front of it at the intersection with 15th Avenue S. A very sad story and my thoughts go out to the grieving family.

A study from the National Highway Traffic Safety Association found that about 70% of all intersection related crashes involved a left turn whereas only 2.2% of intersection related crashes involved persons turning right. Although the study is a bit dated, the statistics are likely similar today.  The study found that the four reasons why turning left caused the car accident were:

  1. False Assumption of Other’s Action,
  2. Turned With Obstructed View,
  3. External Distraction,
  4. Misjudgment of Gap or Other’s Speed

Some tips to reduce the risk inherent with turning left include:

  • Whenever possible, try to use intersections that have a signal with a green left-turn arrow (protected left turn). When the left-turn arrow is no longer green, you must yield to all oncoming vehicles.
  • Rather than making a left, consider going to the next intersection and making three right turns. This may take longer, but you will avoid the left turn altogether and reduce your chances of a crash.
  • Position your vehicle in the proper lane for turning. For a left turn, be in the lane closest to the centerline.

Taking these steps could avoid a car accident.  Drive safely and watch out for those who don’t!


Car Accident Attorney Matthew Noyes discussing the dangers of a left turnAttorneys Matthew Noyes and Lorrie Robinson help families who are impacted by a Tampa Bay car accident. Attorney Matthew Noyes even wrote a book on it – Do You Really Need An Attorney After a Car Accident. If you have questions after a car accident, call Personal Injury Attorney Matthew Noyes at 727-796-8282 or simply click here to schedule a free case consultation.

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