WHEN IS A CAR MAKING A LEFT TURN CONSIDERED TO BE AT FAULT IN AN ACCIDENT?

Whether you are a resident of Tennessee or Mississippi, driving in and around the Memphis area can be stressful. It can be especially frustrating when you are involved in a car accident that results from another driver’s careless behavior.

If a driver turned left in front of you, it might seem like a clear-cut case of liability. However, it might be more difficult than you think to prove that the other driver should be held legally responsible for the accident.

Title 55 of the Tennessee Code governs laws related to auto accident law in Tennessee. Given that Memphis is right on the border with Mississippi, your claim actually might be governed by that state’s law. It will depend on where your crash took place. Title 63 of the Mississippi Code governs traffic violations in Mississippi.

Generally speaking, both states will handle questions of liability in left-turn auto accident cases similarly. However, slight differences might exist.

DIFFICULTY OF PROVING LIABILITY IN A LEFT-TURN ACCIDENT

In the Memphis area, drivers can turn left at green arrow lights. They can also turn left at solid green lights, but they are required to yield to oncoming traffic. Typically, left-turn accidents occur when the driver turning left does not yield properly or when that driver runs a red light.

While a driver turning left often will be considered at fault for an accident, there are many ways in which that driver can argue that she or he should not be held accountable.

What can a driver argue to suggest that, even though he or she was turning left, you are liable for the accident? That driver might claim that you were going straight through a green light but were speeding, and as such, the driver thought he or she was properly yielding to oncoming traffic when turning.

Here is another potential scenario: The driver turning left might argue that you ran a red light, and the driver actually turned when he or she had a green arrow.

These are just a couple of examples of ways that drivers turning left can argue that they were not negligent and thus are not liable for an accident that occurred.

As you can see, there is often more than one way to interpret a car crash.

HOW LEFT-TURN ACCIDENTS ARE INVESTIGATED

An experienced Memphis traffic accident lawyer can investigate your case in many different ways to help prove that you were not liable for the crash and, instead, should be entitled to a recovery.

For example, our car accident investigations often rely on some of the following to provide evidence in your case:

  • Intersection cameras – Many areas of Memphis have cameras that can provide footage that can be helpful to your case. For instance, if the other driver went through a red arrow light, an intersection camera might be able to establish this fact.
  • Traffic light sequence report – This information can show the sequence of traffic lights (when they were red, when they were green). This evidence can help to prove that you were following the traffic regulations of Tennessee or Mississippi when another vehicle struck you.
  • Witness statements – We can contact anyone who might have been at or around the scene of the accident in order to get first-hand accounts of what happened. Witnesses might have seen the other car run a red light, for example.
  • Vehicle inspection – Looking at the vehicles involved in the accident often can tell us a lot about how the accident occurred.

IMPORTANCE OF WORKING WITH ACCIDENT RECONSTRUCTION EXPERTS

In addition to the car accident investigation we perform, we also understand the importance of working with an experienced accident reconstruction expert. Our firm will bring in an accident reconstruction expert who will visit the scene of the accident and look for skid marks and other evidence from the crash, examine damage to the vehicles and analyze photographs from the collision. The expert also will take into account all of the other evidence gathered during the investigation.

The accident reconstruction expert will be a highly trained professional. The expert will rely on physics to show how the driving speeds of each of the vehicles and their respective weights, based on how the accident scene appeared, resulted in the accident, according to ACTAR.org.

With your attorney, an accident reconstruction expert can prepare computer-animated videos, charts, diagrams and other materials to illustrate what happened.

An accident reconstruction expert can also serve as a key witness in a trial (if one is necessary). The expert can help to convince a jury that the other driver is liable for the left-turn collision.

CONTACT AN EXPERIENCED MEMPHIS AUTO ACCIDENT ATTORNEY

If you have suffered injuries in a car accident caused by a careless driver, you deserve to seek financial compensation. An experienced auto accident attorney in Memphis can help you to gather evidence and present the best possible case for proving that the other driver was liable.

Contact the Law Office of David E. Gordon today to learn more about how we can assist with your claim.

We have years of experience with investigating car accident cases, and we will commit the full extent of our resources to assisting you with your claim.

At our firm, we are dedicated to providing personalized service to every client and taking steps to help you pursue all compensation that you are entitled to receive.