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Why Wrong-Way Collisions Happen


According to ABC 7 News, a Cape Coral woman was killed on a recent Friday night after she was hit by a wrong-way driver in a head-on collision. The 21-year-old was driving south in the southbound lanes of US-41 when a 50-year-old Port Charlotte wrong-way driver began driving his pick-up truck north in the southbound lanes. According to authorities, the front of the man’s pick-up truck collided with the front of the 21-year-old’s car before the wrong-way driver also made contact with the 42-year-old Lehigh Acres woman who was driving behind her. Sadly, the 21-year-old driver was pronounced dead on the scene and the 42-year-old was transported to the hospital with minor injuries. The wrong-way driver also had to be hospitalized in critical condition, but troopers suspect that the man was under the influence at the time of the crash and criminal charges are currently pending.

How Common Are Wrong-Way Crashes?

The idea of looking up and seeing another vehicle coming toward you in your lane is a scary prospect for any driver. And why are wrong-way collisions so scary? In most cases, these collisions become head-on collisions. Further, while the number of crashes is relatively low, the likelihood of death or severe injury in these crashes is high. According to the Insurance Insurance Institute, there were almost 3,500 head-on accidents in 2017. In addition, approximately 300 to 400 people die in the United States in wrong-way collisions each year.

Main Reasons for Wrong-Way Collisions

The nature of these collisions means that they almost never occur unless someone has been negligent. Wrong-way accidents typically happen because of driver error for reasons that can include:

  • Being impaired. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the bulk of wrong-way driving incidents involve an intoxicated driver who is under the influence of drugs, alcohol, prescription medications or some combination of these substances.
  • Fatigue. Make no mistake – driving while drowsy can be as dangerous as drunk driving, and in some cases can even be worse because drowsy drivers do not always realize that they are too tired to drive.
  • Distractions. Even what seems like a simple behavior such as talking on the phone, texting, or eating can become the reason why a driver ends up going the wrong way.

Have You Been Injured in a Wrong-Way Car Accident?

If you were hit by a wrong-way driver, you would be well advised to speak with someone who is experienced in acting as a legal advocate in the context of personal injury claims. As the Miami personal injury attorneys at Payer & Associates, we believe in fighting for accident victims unrelentingly and ensuring that our presence means you can maximize your chances of obtaining the compensation you deserve. We are paid on a contingency basis, so you won’t have to pay any fees up front. You should schedule a consultation to discuss your personal injury claim right away so you can ensure your rights are protected. If you wait, evidence important to the success of your case could become unavailable, making it easier for the insurance company to deny or minimize your claim. Therefore, don’t hesitate to contact us today.


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