I am reading more and more about tragic wrong-way accidents happening on the roadways. Today I read in an out-of-state paper of an unfortunate accident in Washington which took the life of a 6-year-old boy and critically injured two others. Recently it was in the news that 11 people died in wrong-way crashes in Tampa, Florida and Pomona, California. It is hard to hear of innocent lives being lost to such a preventable error. Like most, these accidents are avoidable if drivers would pay more attention when they are behind the wheel of a vehicle.
In a 2012 report by the National Transportation Safety Board, it was reported that 3 percent of all crashes are wrong-way crashes and are 27 percent more likely to be deadly crashes. It states that 60 percent of these crashes are caused by a drunk driver traveling too fast. The study also indicates that elderly drivers, 70 years of age and older, were the cause of 15 percent of these types of crashes. The primary cause of wrong-way accidents was found to be vehicles entering via an exit ramp. Often highway design is the problem, with the on and off ramps being next to each other. In an effort to prevent wrong-way crashes, officials suggest lowering the ‘Wrong Way’ signs, making them bigger, adding a second set of signs farther up on the ramp, and installing rumble strips to the pavement so they know they are going the wrong way. And interestingly enough, 78 percent of these types of accidents occur between the hours of 6 p.m. and 6 a.m., and most collisions reportedly take place in the lane closest to the median.
If you or a family member have suffered from being involved in a wrong-way accident, it is important to speak with an Arkansas accident lawyer to discuss your claim and rights as soon as possible.