Left Turn Crashes in Hampton Roads Explained
One of the most common types of car accidents in our area is the failure of a driver turning left to yield the right of way to oncoming traffic. I frequently read about left turn crashes in Hampton Roads.
A failure to yield accident occurs when a driver fails to yield the road, thus causing a crash. What makes these accidents different from many other types of crashes is that often the injury victim drives into the car that fails to yield. Motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable to serious injuries and death.
All drivers have a duty to obey the rules of the road to avoid foreseeable harm to others. This includes rules about yielding to other drivers in certain circumstances.
Virginia Code 46.2-825, lays out the duties for drivers making left turns at controlled and uncontrolled intersections, stating:
“The driver of a vehicle, intending to turn left within an intersection or into an alley, private road, or driveway shall yield the right-of-way to any vehicle approaching from the opposite direction if it is so close as to constitute a hazard. At intersections controlled by traffic lights with separate left-turn signals, any vehicle making a left turn when so indicated by the signal shall have the right-of-way over all other vehicles approaching the intersection.”
Left Turn Crashes in Hampton Roads – The Duty to Yield
It is important to note that Virginia does not limit the duty to yield the right of way based upon the color of the light. The duty to yield before making a left turn is true regardless of whether the light is green, yellow, or red. Simply put, a driver of a vehicle turning left at an intersection must yield to any and all vehicles in the intersection or so close to the intersection to constitute a hazard.
If you are turning left, yield to approaching traffic, so you can make your turn safely.
If you are injured as the result of the fault of a driver who fails to yield while turning left, then you are entitled to compensation for damages under Virginia law.
Typically, damages would include:
- Payment for medical/therapy/physical treatment for injuries
- Payment for repair (and possibly diminished value) of the vehicle or payment of fair market value if the vehicle cannot be repaired.
- Compensation for past, present and future physical/mental pain and suffering due to the injuries.
Other damages could be available based on your personal experience and the facts of the accident. It is important you that you contact us as soon as you can to learn the full extent of your rights under Virginia law.
Left turn crashes in Hampton Roads needlessly kill and injure many people every year. Call our personal injury lawyers at (757) 455-0077 if you have been injured in an auto wreck.