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Can You Sue After an Accident If the Other Driver Wasn’t Using a Turn Signal in Pennsylvania?

Car crashes can happen at any moment. There are many factors that come into play when it comes to determining who is at fault in a car crash. While speed is a common factor in car crashes, there are other types of accidents that, at low speeds, could still cause significant damage and injury. Car crashes, such as rear-end collisions or fender benders can still ruin an individual’s day and, in many instances, their health. But what happens if one driver failed to properly signal a left or right turn and causes a crash? Can you sue the person who failed to use their turn signal? The Philadelphia car accident lawyers at The Reiff Law Firm discuss these questions.

Common Causes of Car Accidents

There are many different causes that can lead to a car accident. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA), drunk driving, driver error, distracted driving and driver fatigue are among the most common contributing causes in car accidents. However, there may be other additional contributing factors that may also lead to a car accident, such as a vehicle defect, tire defect, bad road conditions, and bad weather conditions. However, there are certain instances where things like a driver’s negligence and carelessness is the primary cause of a vehicle accident.

Who is Actually at Fault in a Rear End Collision?

Generally, the law requires drivers to keep a prudent distance between cars. This means individuals should avoid driving too close to a leading car. This could potentially lead to a rear-end car crash. 75 Pa.C.S. § 3310(a) indicates that a car driver should always keep a prudent distance between cars while being cautious regarding their speed and traffic and weather conditions. Essentially, every car driver should be mindful of everything happening around them while driving.

As a general rule, if a car rear-ends the car in front, the car in the rear is responsible, or “at fault.” However, this is not always the case. If the car in front of you fails to signal and suddenly stops to make a turn, this could place them at fault. Additionally, drivers who slam on the brakes or shift into reverse might also be at fault if the car behind them rear-ends them.

The driver behind may be partially responsible for not driving at a safe distance, at a prudent speed, but they may still be able to recover damages.

Can You Sue if The Person in Front of You Failed to Use their Blinker?

All individuals must abide by the rules set forth by the state. As a general rule 75 Pa C.S. § 3334(a) states that no vehicle can turn or move from one traffic lane to the other or enter traffic from a parked position unless it is safe to do so, and after using the appropriate signals. Section 3334(b) states that drivers should warn other drivers of their intentions of turning to the left or right by using signal lights. Furthermore, it also states drivers should use their signal lights continuously during no less than 100 feet before turning if driving under 35mph, or for no less than 300 feet if driving in excess of 35mph. Finally, §3334(d) states that the use of signal lights shall cease after the vehicle completes the turn or movement from one traffic lane to another.  This essentially means that every driver, without exception must use the proper car signals every moment as a means of letting incoming or pursuing vehicles know a driver is about to perform a turn, change lanes, or enter traffic from a stopped position.

The law is very clear in terms of how an individual should act every they are about to make a car turn. However, to determine liability in a rear – end collision, all the facts involving the crash are considered. This means the actions taken by the leading car driver will be considered and so will be the actions of the car following behind. In order to avoid liability for a car crash, you must make sure you are complying with state rules regarding car driving. Keep in mind every car crash accident is solved on a case-by-case basis.

Car Accident Injury Lawyers Offering Free Consultations

There is no way to know when and how a car accident can happen. If you or a loved one has been involved in a car crash accident due to the negligent actions of another person, make sure you retain the services of an experienced Philadelphia personal injury lawyer at your side. The Reiff Law Firm bring decades of experience handling car accident injury victims. To schedule, a free and confidential consultation call our law offices today at (215) 709-6940.

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