Maryland State Police are troubled by a recent wave of wrong way crashes that have caused injuries and fatalities for drivers. A September 12, 2017 report by ABC 7 WJLA listed some of the details:
- In late July 2017, a woman going the wrong way on an Annapolis highway struck and killed another driver. Her blood alcohol content was four times the legal limit, which authorities believe made her so impaired that she was unable to realize she was driving into oncoming traffic.
- There was another wrong way crash in May 2017 that occurred very close to the Annapolis accident. Two people were killed in the collision.
- Another July incident resulted in two fatalities when a wrong way driver struck a car along Indian Head Highway in Prince George’s County.
Fault is rarely an issue in a Maryland wrong way crash, but there are still complicated issues with these types of cases. Some tips on what to do if you encounter a wrong way driver and what to do if you are injured may help.
Causes of Wrong Way Crashes
Alcohol was a factor in all three of the examples above, and intoxication is the leading cause of wrong way accidents. However, there are other factors that play a role in these incidents:
- Age of the Motorist: Elderly drivers may become disoriented behind the wheel, and can be confused by signage. When they are not able to discern the proper direction to travel, they may end up in oncoming traffic.
- Driver Fatigue: Motorists must maintain keen alertness in any conditions, and tiredness can result in lack of attention. Worse, a driver may actually fall asleep behind the wheel and stray into other lanes.
- Confusing Ramp Design or Signage: People driving in an unfamiliar area may not be able to fully comprehend traffic signs or the painting on lanes, putting them in a dangerous wrong way position.
If You Encounter a Wrong Way Driver
You are likely taken off-guard when you see an oncoming car, but pull over as soon as it is possible to do so safely and call 911. If possible, try to wave down the wrong way driver to alert him or her.
Contact a Knowledgeable Car Accident Lawyer if You are Injured in a Wrong Way Accident
A wrong way collision tends to result in catastrophic injures, or even death in severe cases. The speed of an oncoming car, added to your own, means double the impact and trauma you will experience. Even if police issue a traffic ticket or charge the driver with a crime, you will still face an uphill battle to return to health. With an experienced car accident attorney on your side, you can recover compensation for your losses, including medical bills and pain and suffering. If you have been injured or lost a loved one in a wrong way crash, please contact attorney Michael A. Freedman to discuss your situation. We can answer your questions or set up a case assessment to review your situation.
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