What You Need To Know About Head-on Collisions

July 30, 2014 | Category: Automobile Accidents | Share

Wrong-way crashes, which, according to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), account for about 3% of accidents, are much more likely to result in fatal and serious injuries than other types of highway crashes.

You are watching: Follow the four rs (read, right, reduce, and ride) when

In a February 2014 Florida collision, a sports utility vehicle was traveling the wrong way on Interstate 275 around 2 a.m. It hit a Hyundai Sonata, which was carrying four members of the fraternity Sigma Beta Rho at the University of South Florida in Tampa. No one survived the crash according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

Head-on crashes typically occur when a vehicle crosses the median, or center line, and crashes into an on-coming vehicle. Sometimes a driver, knowingly or unknowingly, travels the wrong way in a traffic lane. Confusion may be the cause of some head-on collisions. Last month a driver was involved in a near-miss head-on collision when entering a mall"s parking lot. A vehicle making a left turn to exit did not see that the road was divided with a median strip, and instead of driving to the right of the median, drove to the left in the one-way entry lanes. Head-on crashes occur as a result of a driver"s inadvertent actions such as with run-off-road (ROR) encroachments or deliberate actions, such as executing a passing maneuver on a two-lane road.

The most common causes of head-on collisions are:

Wrong-way crashes - going the wrong way on a roadAvoiding debris or a stopped vehicle by suddenly swervingPassing incorrectly on a two-land roadFalling asleep and drifting into oncoming traffic when behind the wheelSpeeding and speeding around curvesNot seeing, reading or following road sign instructionsDriving under the influence of alcohol or drugsDriving while distracted by texting, using cell phones etc.

The National Safety Council (NSC) recommends “The four R’s” when trying to avoid a head-on collision:

Read the road ahead. Look around your vehicle. Look up to the next hill, curve or overpass to be aware of your surroundings and other vehicles. Communicate with other drivers using your horn and headlights.

• Drive to the right. If you see an oncoming vehicle nearing the center line, begin to brake and drive slightly to the right of your lane. The closer the other car comes to your vehicle, the further you must move to your right. This will put you in a position to be seen sooner by oncoming vehicles intending to pass and for you to be closer to the right for your “escape right.”

Reduce your speed. Reduce your speed for any hazard or oncoming vehicle in your lane. By reducing speed, you lower the energy of the car and therefore increase your control.

Ride off the road. Be prepared drive completely off the road. Drive, don"t skid, off the road. If you skid, you lose control. So don"t lock your brakes. Look where you want to go and follow the path of least resistance. Remember, it"s natural to aim the car where you"re looking.

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Fort Myers Personal Injury Lawyer, Randall L. Spivey is a Board Certified Trial Attorney – the highest recognition for competence bestowed by the Florida Bar and a distinction earned by just one (1%) percent of Florida attorneys. He has handled over 2,000 personal injury and wrongful death cases throughout Florida. For a free and confidential consultation to discuss your legal rights, contact the Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A., in Lee County at 239.337.7483 or toll free at 1.888.477.4839,or by email to Randall
. Visit ptcouncil.net for more information. You can contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.in Charlotte County at 941.764.7748 and in Collier County 239.793.7748.