Car accidents often occur when drivers refuse to follow traffic laws. They may or not be aware of the laws they’re breaking, but that isn’t an excuse for driving recklessly. When someone’s disregard for traffic laws leads to a wreck that causes injuries, the driver who breaks the law and is found at fault is responsible for the accident no matter their intent.
When people keep traffic rules in mind, it could prevent them from making a reckless decision or from knowingly putting themselves or others in danger. While all states in the nation share most major traffic laws, every unique state has a few unique laws and implementations of laws that new residents or visitors may not be aware of.
Below you’ll find a breakdown of some of the more unique traffic laws in the state of Maryland and how they may affect a car accident claim:
Unique Maryland Traffic Safety Laws
The Maryland Department of Transportation aims to keep their highways safe by encouraging all drivers to remain alert, calm, and obey traffic laws at all times. Here are some specific laws that all Maryland drivers should keep in mind:
- In Maryland, drivers cannot operate vehicles while impaired. The limit for a DUI is .07 blood alcohol concentration, which is lower than other states. Many people are probably used to hearing .08, but that is not the case in this state.
- Drivers and passengers in the front seat must wear their seat belts. Children and teenagers up to age 16 must also wear seat belts. Children under eight years old must be in a child safety seat unless they’re taller than 4 feet, 9 inches or weigh more than 65 pounds.
- Vehicles must stop for school buses when the vehicle’s red flashers are on, except when the bus is on the opposite side of a highway divided by a barrier or median strip.
- Right turns can be made on red lights unless prohibited, but only after stopping for pedestrians or other cars.
- Fines are doubled for speeding in areas where highway work is being done. Roadwork speed limit signs must be followed.
- Maintain a distance of at least two to three car lengths from the vehicle in front of you.
- There are also many laws concerning vehicle maintenance. As a driver, you have a responsibility to keep your vehicle safe. This means your tires are properly inflated, your windshield wipers work, and your windows are clear so you can see through all of them.
- In Maryland, you must have your headlights on when you’re in weather that requires you to use your windshield wipers continuously.
- You’re also responsible for passing when it’s safe, not weaving through traffic, and always signaling when you plan to change lanes or turn.
- Use your emergency flashers if you’re in an emergency situation where you need to drive much slower than normal, or visibility is exceptionally poor.
Keeping these laws in mind will help drivers remember to be safe. However, people do make reckless decisions on the road that can have terrible consequences. As important as it is to know the law, you should also know what to do after a crash.
If someone or you have been injured in an auto collision, you need to call 911 for police and emergency services. If you need to contact the police in a non-emergency situation, you can dial #77 in Maryland. Others around you may have serious injuries, so it’s important to not move anyone because you may risk injuring them further.
When You Need Trustworthy Representation
While people can learn more about traffic laws and have a plan of what to do after a car accident, this doesn’t mean that the road to recovery will be easy. When you’re dealing with insurance companies while trying to heal and get back to your life, things can easily fall through the cracks. Unfortunately, this can mean you’re not getting the compensation you’re owed. To protect yourself and secure a more stable future, you should get in touch with our law firm today.
Belsky, Weinberg & Horowitz, LLC is based in Baltimore. Our passion for getting people the justice they deserve drives us every day. We have years of experience with cases like yours and have helped many car accident victims get the justice they deserve.