Failure to Yield to Oncoming Traffic

Failing to yield to traffic that has the right of way can be a costly mistake. In many driving situations there are instances where we must yield to vehicles that have been granted the right of way by signs or traffic lights. When a driver doesn’t notice or disregards a yield sign, s/he may cut in front of fast moving traffic that was not expecting to have to slow down. The result can be a devastating accident at high speed that injures the drivers and passengers involved, totals the vehicles, or worse.

Yield Signs

Yield signs are often disregarded by drivers or are simply not noticed. These signs are placed at intersections or where two roads merge to help drivers better negotiate the flow of traffic. Some of the confusion with yield signs may stem from the fact that some drivers do not fully understand what it means to yield. Many drivers will either speed up to try to “beat” the oncoming traffic, or will slow down but continue to move forward when the road isn’t clear. Both of these are not proper yields.

To yield, a driver who is approaching a yield sign should slow down and look for oncoming traffic. If no traffic is present, the motorist may proceed into the intersection or roadway. If traffic is present, a driver must slow down and allow all traffic to pass before passing the yield sign. When traffic is congested, the driver may have to stop at the yield sign until the way is clear. Simply slowing down is not a proper yield when the road is not clear.

Yielding on a Green Light

At many green lights, vehicles waiting to turn left across traffic may proceed through the intersection if there is no oncoming traffic that presents an imminent danger. This means that motorists who wish to turn left on a green ball light must wait until all close oncoming traffic from the opposite direction has passed. If there is a gap in the oncoming traffic, the driver may proceed and make the left turn once it is safe to pass.

Yielding on a Highway On Ramp or to an Exit Ramp

When entering a highway, vehicles on the on ramp must yield to traffic already on the highway. This yield, however, is slightly different from city street yields. Vehicles entering the on ramp should accelerate to the speed of traffic on the highway, then maneuver into a gap in the traffic. It is not recommended to slow down on an on ramp, and stopping on a ramp is extremely dangerous. Typically on ramps are longer than normal yields and provide a gradual merge so that drivers have time to negotiate a busy highway.

Vehicles exiting a highway have the right of way in traffic. Drivers on the access road or frontage road must yield if there are vehicles exiting. If many people are exiting at once, it may be necessary for frontage road traffic to slow or even stop to let the exiting traffic pass first. Because exiting traffic may still be traveling at speeds close to those on the highway, it is crucial for drivers on the access road to be alert to avoid a severe accident.

For More Information

An accident caused by a driver who failed to yield can be extremely costly in terms of both injuries and damages. If this has happened to you, you may be entitled to compensation for the costs of your accident, including medical bills, lost wages from time off work for recovery, and pain and suffering.

To learn more about common car accident scenarios and how you can initiate a lawsuit for compensation, please visit the website of the Wausau car accident attorneys of Habush, Habush & Rottier, S.C. today.