When two or more road cross, the risk of motor vehicle collisions increases. This is especially true when you add rush hour traffic, pedestrians, and bicyclists. Drivers often need to be hyper aware of their surroundings when driving through busy intersections. Even a mere second of distraction can have serious consequences.
The Federal Highway Administration recognizes that part of addressing road safety involves improving intersection travel and reducing the number of conflicts. While there are discussions about geometrically designed road markings and the application of additional traffic control devices, intersection safety often boils down to drivers yielding and stopping when they’re supposed to.
Vehicle congestion and accidents are common in Maryland, especially with D.C. as our neighbor. Thousands of car accidents happen in Maryland and the Baltimore area every year. As a result, thousands of individuals are injured, and hundreds lose their lives. In order to protect yourself and your loved ones, it’s important where the most dangerous intersections are in Baltimore – so when you travel through those areas, you know to take extra precautions.
Roadway Intersection Risks
According to the National Highway Travel Safety Administration (NHTSA) nearly 40 percent of all crashes nationwide occur at intersections. There are a number of different crash types that occur at intersections, including:
- Rear-end crashes that occur when the following driver is distracted and doesn’t realize the lead driver has stopped
- Side-swipe collisions where one or more vehicles are turning
- Collisions between oncoming vehicles – especially when one is turning across traffic
- Side impact collisions (also called “T-bones”) that involve a driver on one side running a red light, either intentionally or while trying to make it through the intersection before the yellow light turns red
- Crashes at level or rail crossing
- Collisions into vulnerable road users like bicyclists or pedestrians
Most of these accidents are a result of driver negligence or recklessness. The most common negligent acts involve running red lights and ignoring yield and stop signs. Another reason these accidents happen has to do with intersection visibility. If a driver has inadequate sight distance to oncoming traffic when turning, or if a driver is unaware of an intersection, they risk getting into an accident.
Below you’ll find a list of the most dangerous intersections in Baltimore based on the number of car accidents each year.
Gwynns Falls Parkway and Reisterstown Road
While there are a number of dangerous intersections in Maryland and the Baltimore area, the most dangerous by far is at Gwynns Falls Parkway and Reisterstown Road. According to research from the NHTSA, there were 46 crashes at this intersection in 2015. Many of those accidents were the result of disobeying traffic signals.
Northern Parkway at Jones Falls Expressway
There were 38 crashes at the intersection of the Northern Parkway and the Jones Falls Expressway in 2015. This area experiences heavy traffic throughout the day, and speeding is often a contributing factor in the accidents that occur.
Orleans Street at Gay and Ensor Streets
The intersection at Orleans Street and Gay and Ensor Streets sees major congestion and has traffic flowing in a variety of different directions. The paths available can cause confusion for drivers, especially if they’re unfamiliar with the area. As a result, 36 accidents occurred here in 2015.
West Cold Spring Lane at Jones Falls Expressway
The West Cold Spring Lane and Jones Falls Expressway intersection saw 34 accidents in 2015. The Cold Spring Lane exit can experience a lot of congestion, especially at the end of the workday. The exit also splits into two separate routes, which can lead to some drivers cutting in where they shouldn’t in an attempt to get where they’re going.
South Monroe Street at Washington Boulevard
The intersection at South Monroe Street and Washington Boulevard has four lights and three to five lanes of traffic coming from all four sides. When a driver neglects a yellow light or turns left without yielding, accidents are common. There were 27 accidents at this intersection in 2015.
Intersection car accidents are almost always preventable if drivers take the time to follow the established laws and protocols in place for the safety of everyone. When these rules are ignored, neglectful drivers can bring serious harm to other drivers and pedestrians. In the event you or a loved one has suffered as a result of a car accident in the Baltimore and surrounding areas, our Maryland car accident lawyers are prepared to help you. Contact us today for a free consultation.
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