Determining Fault for an Accident in an Intersection

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When you get into a car accident at an intersection, many factors can play a role in the cause of the collision. Knowing who’s at fault for the crash can sometimes be difficult to pinpoint; however, if the accident caused significant injuries or damage to your vehicle, determining fault will be necessary in order to receive compensation for your losses.

Typically, one of the vehicle drivers involved in the accident is proven to be at fault, but occasionally, the government can be held accountable for a roadway hazard or traffic light malfunction. It’ll take an investigation to determine who’s liable, but with the help of a car accident attorney, you’ll be in good hands.

Causes of Intersection Accidents

Unfortunately, intersection accidents happen frequently around the country. The U.S. Department of Transportation released a report in 2004 that showed intersection accidents accounting for 20 percent of all car accident fatalities.

One of the most common causes of intersection accidents is red-light running. Often, drivers will speed up in order to get through a yellow light and end up running the red light instead. When drivers run red lights, they can crash with other vehicles who are going through green lights in perpendicular lanes.

Other causes of intersection accidents include distracted driving and driver errors. Intersections are a common area where the right of way gets miscommunicated. Not knowing the rules of the road can cause vehicle collisions as well as bicycle and pedestrian collisions.


Traffic lights are put in place at most intersections to help drivers know when they have the right of way. However, some intersections don’t have lights. Intersections with stop signs have specific rules to follow. Whoever is the first to approach an intersection should proceed through the intersection first. If drivers approach at the same time, they should always yield to the car on their right.

When in doubt, yielding is always the safest option and can avoid collisions. Many accidents happen at intersections because drivers are going through the intersection too quickly without being fully aware of their surroundings. The police report after an accident should show a full investigation of what happened in the crash, including any photographs, witness testimonies, and video footage.

Reach Out to a Car Accident Attorney

Your car accident attorney can help you gather all of the necessary evidence from your crash in order to determine fault in your case. Once fault is determined, the next steps can be taken to file your claim and secure the full compensation you deserve. At Christensen Law, our qualified lawyers are prepared to guide you through every step of the legal process, from start to finish.

Although determining fault in an intersection accident may be more difficult than other types of car accidents, we’re willing to take on the challenge. If you have questions or concerns and want to talk about your case in more detail, you can schedule a no-obligation consultation with us by filling out the contact form below or by calling us.