What Is A Florida Driver’s Duty Of Care When Making A Left Turn At An Intersection?
Among the many maneuvers drivers make while driving, making a left turn is one of the most challenging ones. Unfortunately, left-hand turns are not only difficult, but they are also quite dangerous. While all car accidents can result in injuries, left turn accidents can result in some of the most severe injuries and even fatalities.
According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Association (“NHTSA”), left turn accidents at intersections often occur because of inattention, distraction, illegal maneuver, or aggressive driving. A large majority of accident cases involve a driver turning left through an intersection on a green light (not a green arrow).
In Florida, when and how a driver can make a left turn at an intersection is strictly regulated by state laws. When a motorist fails to comply with the laid-down rules, they put themselves and others at risk. On top of that, a driver who disobeys the rules governing when and how drivers can make left turns at intersections can be held liable for their actions. So, if you were involved in an accident at an intersection because another driver turned left improperly, you may be eligible for compensation.
If you were in a left-hand turn accident and believe that the driver who made the left turn did so improperly, thus, resulting in your accident, among the many things you need to prove is that the driver who turned left breached their duty of care. So, what exactly is a driver’s duty of care when making a left turn at an intersection? Read on to find out.
Florida Statute 316.151
Under this statute, a car user planning to make a left turn at a junction must approach the intersection in the farthest left-hand lane legally available to them. After entering the intersection, such a driver is required to make the left turn so as to exit from the intersection in a lane legally available to vehicles moving in such direction upon the road being entered.
Florida Statute 316.122
Under Florida law, an individual who wants to turn left into an alley, driveway, within an intersection, or private road is required to give the driver coming from the opposite direction the right-of-way. Such a driver must also give way to any car legally passing on the left of their vehicle. This is required if the left-turning vehicle is close or within the intersection, as to constitute an immediate hazard.
In plain terms, a driver cannot turn left into oncoming traffic even if they are turning on a green light (as opposed to a green arrow). The driver coming from the opposite direction – through a green light – legally has the right of way.
When a motorist fails to comply with the above rules, they can be held liable for an accident and resulting damages. Generally, a violation of the above regulations equals a breach of duty.
Contact a Coral Springs Car Accident Lawyer Today
After a left turn accident, you need to contact a skilled car accident attorney to learn about your legal options. So, if you were in a left turn accident because of a driver who turned left improperly, breaching their duty of care, do not hesitate to contact one of our experienced Coral Springs car accident lawyers. Get in touch with the trial attorneys at Lyons & Snyder today to schedule a free consultation.