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Unsafe Lane Changes Can Cause Serious Auto Accidents

By Michael Verna on June 28, 2017

The aftermath of a car accidentThe highways and city streets of the Bay Area can get extremely busy. Whether you're making your daily commute or driving for a weekend getaway, auto accidents can happen. Our attorneys have helped clients in San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose fight to receive just compensation after serious collisions.

A number of accidents are the result of unsafe or improper lane changes. Let's explore this issue in a bit more detail.

Improper Lane Changes Defined

An improper lane change refers to any sort of change in lanes or merging into lanes that is done without regard to the safety of other motorists/surrounding vehicles. There are different examples of this reckless sort of behavior, which we'll provide more details about in the examples below.

Failure to Use Turn Signals and Blinkers

Turn signals and blinkers are a common sense way to let others know of our intent to turn or to change lanes. Unfortunately, people can neglect to use their turn signals, which can lead to a number of close calls while on the road.

Always be sure to use your blinkers while driving. Also make sure to replace the bulbs and/or fuses for your blinkers and tail lights when they go out.

Failure to Check Mirrors and Blind Spots

Checking your rearview and side mirror before changing lanes is a common sense way to avoid side collisions with other vehicles, whether they be cars or bicycles. It's also crucial to check your blind spots since the vehicle's mirrors may not be able to see all angles around your car.

As simple as this is, people often neglect to check their mirrors and blind spots. This puts the people around them in jeopardy and increases the risk of a serious collision.

Frequent Lane Changes

Changing lanes too much can be very dangerous. As drivers speed and dart around vehicles, they may have a series of close calls with other motorists. Even if you are in a rush, it's safest to stay in a lane and only change lanes when practical. Better to to be safe than sorry.

Cutting Across Multiple Lanes

You may have seen drivers move diagonally across multiple lanes of traffic in order to make a turn or an exit. This puts so many drivers at risk, and can lead to deadly multi-car collisions simply given how many vehicles are involved in such a maneuver.

Rather than put so many people at risk, pay attention to turns and exits as they are coming up so you can get in the correct lane well ahead of time. If you do miss your turn or exit, just take the next one and come back to the turn/exit around to it safely.

Other Causes of Unsafe Lane Changes

In addition to all of the examples we've provided above, the following actions can also contribute to or directly cause an unsafe lane change:

  • Texting while driving
  • Cellphone use while driving
  • Driver distraction
  • Drunk driving
  • Inattentive driving
  • Reckless driving
  • Driver fatigue
  • Speeding

Dangerous and reckless behaviors behind the wheel are never acceptable, which is why it's so important to have a skilled auto accident attorney on your side. A lawyer can hold a reckless driver accountable.

Learn More About Your Legal Options

For more information about your legal rights and options, be sure to contact our team of auto accident attorneys today. We will consider the nature of your case and help you receive just compensation from the negligent parties that were responsible.

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Walnut Creek Office

2121 N California Blvd
Ste 875
Walnut Creek, CA 94596

Open Today 8:30am - 6:00pm

More Info Directions (925) 935-3300