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What causes wrong-way car accidents?

On Behalf of | Feb 11, 2016 | Car Accidents

There are many different types of car accidents that can occur on Virginia roadways. Recently, this blog highlighted the story of an accident in Danville where multiple parties were injured. In that accident, a wrong-way driver apparently caused the crash when the driver crossed the centerline.

Wrong-way car accidents are very serious. They often result in severe and fatal injuries to those involved. Many individuals in Virginia may question why these accidents occur. Despite clear markings on most roads and highways about which direction to travel, a driver still ends up causing wrong-way accident.

According to the National Transportation Safety Board, there are many factors that cause wrong-way accidents. However, the most overwhelmingly popular reason for wrong-way accidents to occur is drunk driving. According to data, somewhere between 50 and 75 percent of wrong-way drivers are driving under the influence of alcohol. In many cases these drivers have a high blood alcohol content level — a BAC level above .15 percent.

However, drunk drivers are not the only individuals that cause wrong-way accidents. Older drivers are also responsible for many of these types of accidents. Drivers over the age of 70 have been shown to be responsible for up to 15 percent of wrong-way accidents.

Wrong-way accidents are more likely at or near exit ramps on the highway. They are also more frequent at night and more likely to occur on the weekends. They are also more likely to occur in the lane closest to the street’s median.

It is important to understand the many causes of wrong-way accidents in order to prevent them. However, this knowledge will not help those individuals who have been hurt in a wrong-way accident. In those cases, a personal injury suit might be more appropriate. In such a suit, individuals can collect compensation for their losses. An attorney can help to explain people’s specific legal rights in these situations.