Crossing the lines could be fatal for North Carolina drivers

Most people, from a very early age, are taught to stay between the lines. From the day we learn to read and write we start to follow or stay within the lines right up to the time we become an adult making choices of which path to follow. North Carolina drivers are finding that these are some of the best lessons in life when it comes to avoiding fatal North Carolina car accidents.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration 2008 report, the leading cause of North Carolina traffic fatalities is by roadway departures. When a vehicle crosses over a road edge line or center line or when it travels off the road and crashes, there is a substantial risk of being fatally injured.
From 2005 through 2009 61% of all North Carolina crashes were caused by roadway departures.

The New York Daily News reported this horrific North Carolina crash involving a family from Queens. There was a family of seven who were traveling from New York to Alabama. It appears about half way through their trip while on I-77 the driver fell asleep, crossed the center median and crashed into two vehicles traveling in the other direction. The result of this roadway departure crash was 4 dead and six injured.

Some of the common causes of roadway departure crashes (listed by leading cause) are:


-Drowsy or drunk driving.

-Loss of vehicle control due to road conditions (ice).

-Over compensating to avoid a road obstacle (swerving to miss a deer).

-Distractive driving.

-Vehicle malfunction (tire blowout).

“Ride Safe Corridors” is an effort by North Carolina DOT highway engineers to do day and night road inspections to keep roadways safe. These engineers inspect roadways in all kinds of weather to identify dangerous conditions. The types of things they evaluate are shoulder design, road surface issues, road signs, road lighting, and road markings, as wells as rumble strip placement.

Their goal is to keep vehicles in their lanes and on the road. Rumble strips on the edges of travel lanes, warns drivers that they are heading out of their lane. The loud sound and vibration gets the driver’s attention. Redesigning shoulders will decrease shoulder drop offs. This will help drivers to avoid steering or over-compensation, which should lead to less rollover accidents. Dangerous curves should be marked well to give drivers enough warning of the direction of the road ahead.

If you or someone you love has been involved in a car crash, contact the lawyers at Lee & Smith today for a free and confidential appointment.Call 800-887-1965. Serving all of North and South Carolina, including North Wilkesboro, Reidsville, Roxboro and Rutherfordton.

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