Changing lanes is an essential part of driving and this action often starts to become second nature to drivers. However, lane changes are a frequent cause of accidents. It’s important to know how to change lanes safely to minimize your risk.
Here are some tips for safe lane changes:
1. Make Sure Your Mirrors Are Properly Adjusted
Before you hit the road, make sure your mirrors are adjusted. To do this, make sure you are seated comfortably in the same position you’ll be in while driving. Then, check that you can only just see the back of your car in your mirrors. If you see too much of your car, the mirror is pointed too far in. If you don’t see your car at all, it’s pointed too far out. Having your mirrors adjusted properly is important for visibility during lane changes.
2. Always Use Your Turn Signal
Your turn signal allows you to communicate with others on the road. Before a lane change, you need to be sure to signal your intention. Failing to do so can result in a ticket or worse, an accident. Always signal before you start your lane change (at least 100 feet prior), not during it. Keep your signal on until you’ve fully changed lanes.
3. Check Your Mirrors And Blind Spot
Before changing lanes, use all of the options available to check that the lane you are switching to is clear of traffic. Look in your mirrors and then turn to check your blind spot. Be sure you take note of any cars that may be speeding up and could enter the area you are moving into during your lane change.
4. While Changing Lanes, Maintain Your Speed
Any unexpected changes in your behavior while driving can contribute to an accident because other drivers may not anticipate them. This includes altering your speed during a lane change. Don’t slow down or speed up excessively. If you need to do either of this to change lanes, then you should wait until conditions are better before you make a move.
Who Is Liable In A Lane Change Accident?
Liability in car accidents is complex and will depend on a variety of factors. In general, it depends on the duty of care that drivers owe to one another and whether this duty of care was breached. For example, not using a turn signal before a lane change or failing to check one’s blind spot could be considered a breach of the duty of care.
Due to right-of-way laws, the driver making a lane change is more likely to be at fault, but this is not always the case. Either the person making the lane change or the person in the other driver could be at fault, depending on the circumstances. In some cases, liability may be shared.
Injured In An Accident?
If you were injured due to another driver’s negligence in a lane change accident or another type of collision, we can help. Our skilled personal injury attorneys will review your case and help you determine how to move forward. We fight for our clients and help them recover the money they are owed.