We all know the basic dos and don’ts of proper driving etiquette to avoid car accidents, even if a good amount of time has passed since we last took a driver’s education class. Common sense when it comes to rules of the road tell us not to drive while distracted or drowsy, not to drive aggressively, and not to drive while under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol. While these standards might seem obvious, there are other common traffic mishaps that we often fall victim to on a regular basis. Such poor driving habits can place us at significant risk for collisions and injuries, which makes the need for practicing defensive driving techniques critical each time we get behind the wheel in Illinois.
Poor Driving Behaviors to Watch for on the Roadway
Every state, including Illinois, has certain traffic laws that must be followed to maintain your driving privileges. However, not everyone obeys these rules, which can include making the following infractions:
Failing to yield the right of way: Whether you encounter another driver at a four-way stop, an intersection, or as you are merging into another lane or onto an exit ramp along the highway, chances are you have witnessed the other driver failing to yield the right of way more than once. Ignoring yielding guidelines is not only inconsiderate, but this common traffic mishap can create a dangerous situation for every driver involved in the interaction. When it comes to yielding at an intersection, the first driver to stop should be the driver to go, or the driver on the right should go first when both vehicles approach the intersection at the same time. As for drivers making a left turn, they must always yield to oncoming traffic first. The rule of thumb is that straight traffic always goes first.
Red-light running: RLR, or red-light running, is a serious hazard and is a behavior that we all encounter from time to time. The U.S. Department of Transportation reports that RLR-related crashes cause hundreds of deaths each year in the United States alone and that drivers are more likely to be injured by a red-light runner accident than any other kind of crash. Just because the light turns green does not mean you should immediately hit the gas; be sure to pause and look in all directions at an intersection after the light turns green before you proceed through it.
Lack of signaling: Communication between drivers is a crucial part of operating our vehicles and reaching our destinations safely, but unfortunately many drivers fall short in this area while out and about. Poor signaling or a complete lack of signaling is a common traffic mishap that places everyone at risk for accident and injury. Be on the lookout for cars passing in a No Passing Zone, like on a curve or going uphill. Distance yourself from a driver who is noticeably failing to use turn signals while switching lanes or navigating toward an exit.
Contact a Palatine Personal Injury Lawyer
While we cannot control what other motorists do on the highway, we can brush up on the basic rules of the road. Making a conscious decision to remain alert and drive defensively every time we venture out can decrease the chance of being involved in a collision with serious and life-threatening injuries. However, despite your efforts, a negligent driver may be responsible for your crash. Therefore, it is important to reach out to a competent Arlington Heights car accident attorney right away to ensure your rights for seeking compensation are protected. Call our dedicated, knowledgeable team at Newland & Newland LLP today at 847-797-8000 and request a free consultation.