Improper lane change accidents, aka merging accidents, are shocking and often lead to serious physical harm, property damage, and emotional distress. Lane change accidents result in serious injuries, including but not limited to:
- Broken bones
- Cuts and lacerations
- Spinal cord injuries
- Head injuries and traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Amputation or disfigurement
The lane change accident attorneys at Grossman Law Offices have years of experience helping Californians who have been injured in this kind of accident. At your complimentary, risk-free case evaluation, we listen to your side of the story and then provide you with our legal advice.
What is a lane change accident?
A lane change accident occurs when the driver of one vehicle leaves their lane to enter another lane when there is not sufficient room for both vehicles, resulting in an improper lane change accident. The following are some of the most common reasons why improper lane change accidents occur.
Weaving in and out of traffic under the false impression that it will save the driver time is dangerous. Unfortunately, drivers who do this typically travel faster than other traffic, and their impatience greatly increases the chances of something going wrong.
Incorrect Mirror Use Or Placement
Drivers should set their mirrors in a way that minimizes blind spots. Drivers should check their rearview and side mirrors for other vehicles that may be in the lane in which they are planning to merge. If you are driving a new car or if someone has used your vehicle since the last time you drove, then the mirrors may need to be adjusted.
Drivers who are distracted by their cell phone, conversations in the car, the radio, or by eating can accidentally veer into other lanes, thus unintentionally causing lane change and merging accidents.
Failure To Use Turn Signals
It is considered negligent if a driver fails to signal before changing lanes because turn signals communicate the intention to merge into another lane. If a driver is not expecting another driver to merge into their lane, then they cannot respond in time.
Who is at fault in a lane change accident?
All drivers are obligated to ensure that they have enough space before changing or merging lanes. The driver of the merging vehicle is usually considered at fault for the accident.
The first question that the responding police officer and the auto insurance company will ask is who had the right of way and whether or not the merging driver was using their signal at the time of the accident. However, suppose the driver in the adjacent lane suddenly sped up or slowed down or intentionally performed reckless maneuvers to prevent the other vehicle from merging. In that case, they may be held liable for their part in the lane change accident.
When you work with an attorney from Grossman Law Offices, you can be assured that we will exhaust our resources investigating your lane change accident so that you get the maximum compensation you deserve.
What should I do after a lane change accident?
You should always call 911 to have a police report filed. You should never leave the scene of a lane change accident before law enforcement has arrived. Additionally, you should exchange information with any other drivers who were involved. The information you should collect includes:
- Email addresses
- Phone numbers
- Insurance information
It’s best to seek legal assistance in any personal injury case within 14 days of the accident. However, you can still possibly retrieve damages even after two weeks, so contact a personal injury attorney today to see what type of compensation you may be eligible for.
You should tell the responding officer the facts that you recall prior to the accident, such as whether or not the other driver used their signal before changing lanes or if they were weaving in and out of lanes before striking your vehicle. You should also take pictures at the scene of car accident to document what happened, where it happened, and other factors that may have contributed. For example, if a car merged into your lane suddenly to avoid a road hazard, such as debris in the road, then the entity responsible for the hazard could be liable for your damages.
Legal Advice You Deserve After A Lane Change Accident
We provide customized legal counsel to maximize your compensation and your goals. With over 50 years of experience and a track record of success, Grossman Law Offices has recovered millions for our clients. We will conduct a thorough investigation into the cause of your crash and exhaust our resources preparing evidence and testimony for your case. When you need passionate and effective representation by a skilled lawyer in Visalia, CA, contact Grossman Law Offices by calling 800-462-5555.