Liability Questions for Left Turn Crashes in Anchorage, AK


When you think about the careless acts and traffic maneuvers that are most likely to cause car accidents in Alaska, speeding, running red lights, or drunk driving are probably the first that come to mind. Though these forms of misconduct are definitely dangerous, other statistics may come as a shock. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration(NHTSA) reports that about 40% of all auto collisions in the US are intersection-related crashes, an estimated 5.8 million. Of these, 22.2% occurred while one driver was making a left turn, and another 12% were vehicles crossing over a lane – such as what motorists do when turning left.

Fortunately, you do have legal options if you were hurt in a left-turn crash, just as you would in any other motor vehicle collision caused by driver negligence. You should contact an Alaska car accident lawyer right away to discuss your remedies. Read on for some basics.


Assessing Fault in a Left Turn Collision

Negligence is the reason that most car collisions occur, but the term means more than just mere carelessness. To recover compensation, you need to show that the other motorist caused the crash through a breach of the legal duty to drive safely. There are multiple sources of negligence in a left turn accident:

  • Under Alaska’s rules of the road, a driver making a left turn must yield right of way to oncoming traffic. That motorist may receive a traffic ticket for violating the law, but the circumstances are indicative of negligence.
  • Even if the other motorist did not violate traffic regulations, he or she could be negligent by engaging in a maneuver in a way that is unreasonably safe. The measurement for reasonableness is what another driver would have done under the same circumstances: If a prudent motorist would NOT have tried to make a left in such a situation, someone who does would be negligent.


Exceptions to Liability for Left Turn Crashes

There are occasions when the driver making a left turn would not be considered at fault – or might be deemed as less responsible for causing the accident. Examples include:

  • The turning driver had a green left arrow and, therefore, had right of way over oncoming cars;
  • The oncoming vehicle ran a red light or was speeding; and,
  • The motorist going straight through the intersection was under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or was distracted by texting.

These exceptions may be important to an auto crash claim because of Alaska’s contributory negligence law, which reduces your compensation if your own acts were a cause of the collision.


Trust an Alaska Car Accident Attorney to Protect Your Interests

 Making careless left turns is just one of many types of negligence that lead to auto collisions, but there are many other types of misconduct that put you at risk. To learn more about your legal rights and remedies, please contact Power & Power Law in Anchorage, Alaska. We can schedule a no-cost case evaluation to review your circumstances and discuss strategy.