Find Out if Roundabouts Increase or Decrease Car Accidents
Car manufacturers are adding safety features to their vehicles every year, from systems that automatically brake when an obstacle comes up, to systems that show you clearly who’s next to you in traffic. However, it’s not just the manufacturers that are making changes – local governments are too.
One option that’s been offered as a potential solution to some car accidents is adding roundabouts to intersections. But do these roundabouts, otherwise known as traffic circles, really help? People familiar with these traffic patterns say they’re a huge help, while those who don’t understand them find them confusing and dangerous. But what do the numbers say? Read on to find out.
Intersections are extremely dangerous for drivers
First and foremost, let’s cover this simple fact: Intersections are dangerous. Any point at which two or more roads cross can be a hot spot for car, bus, and truck accidents. Cars come to the junctions at different rates of speed, traveling several different directions, and aren’t always paying attention. For these reasons, intersections can be hot beds of accidents.
The roundabout has been introduced and studied
One of the solutions that has been considered as far as improving the safety of roadways is to construct more roundabouts. They require a driver to slow down and enter into a circle, rather than crossing a typical perpendicular junction.
The Minnesota Department of Transportation did a study of more than 140 roundabouts, in both rural and urban areas. They found that roundabouts did in fact have a significant impact on accidents and fatal injuries. In fact, in the areas where roads had roundabouts installed, fatal car accidents were lowered by 86% and serious injuries in car accidents went down by 83%. The study also found that car accidents involving any type of bodily injury were reduced by 61%.
Why are roundabouts so successful at lowering the incidence of accidents?
According to the study, the main benefit to replacing typical intersections with roundabouts is because the ability to t-bone another vehicle is gone. This is when the front of one car smashes into the side of another, and this type of accident can cause significant damage and injuries. With a roundabout, vehicles don’t encounter one another at right angles – which means that t-boning is difficult or impossible.
Changes in roads are only one part of making our roads safer
At Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas, we’re glad to see that serious efforts are being made to make our roads safer. That said, changing the roads and traffic patterns are only a few of the things that need to be done. In today’s world, there are two factors that need to be addressed if we want to see a significant decrease in traffic deaths: Texting while driving and driving while drunk.
If you’ve been hurt in a car accident, or you lost a loved one in an accident, then you may have a personal injury case. Reach out to Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 909-982-0707 today and we can let you know what your options are. We’ll start with a free legal consultation during which we can offer our next step forward.