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Potentially Fatal Risks of Turning Right on Red

The day has arrived when you must take your son on his first driving lesson. He’s been bugging you for weeks now and you can’t put it off much longer, so you decide to take him to practice turning around the B-CC High School.

His left turns are remarkably good, but when you started to have him make right turns, he kind of fell apart. You tried explaining how he must always check and double-check the space around him before turning, but he consistently only checked his left. You also tried making scenarios about turning on red lights, and how people could be walking in crosswalks and such, but he still wasn’t grasping how important it was to have a 360-degree awareness.

How can you ensure he drives safely when he doesn’t have a clear grasp of the potential risks? What should you tell him could happen if he doesn’t pay attention?

Right Turn Risks

If you’re going to turn, always check and double-check that it is safe and legal to do so, and there are no bicycles, pedestrians, or other vehicles in your path; otherwise, you may not only be putting yourself at risk, you could be endangering the lives of others. Some turning risks include:

  • Receiving a ticket if a “no turn on red” sign has been posted. These signs are posted for your safety. Disregarding or ignoring them not only can put others in danger, but it is also illegal.
  • Colliding into a vehicle turning left. It’s sometimes difficult to judge who has the green light when you have the red. If you’re not careful, you could wind up turning at the same time as oncoming left lane traffic.
  • Seriously or fatally injuring a pedestrian. When your lane has a red light, pedestrians may assume that it is safe to cross even if they don’t have the right of way. Misjudging their intent could lead to an accident.
  • Injuring or killing a biker. Whether a bicyclist is in his bike lane or in a crosswalk, if you’re distracted or don’t see him next to you, an unexpected turn could result in a tragic collision.

Turning right when you have the green light can be difficult and treacherous, but when you factor in the added risks of turning on a red, the safest option is to just wait. Although it is often legal to turn on a red (unless a sign is posted) and it may cut down your commute time by a few seconds, it may not always be the safest option. If you’re going to turn, always check and double-check that it is safe and legal to do so, and there are no bicycles, pedestrians, or other vehicles in your path.

If you’ve recently been injured in a turning collision and need help with your injury claim, contact us today. Our knowledge and eagerness to fight for you will help prove to you why having an experienced lawyer is the first step to getting the settlement you deserve.

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