Every year, people are seriously injured or killed on roadways. Surprisingly, many have parked on the shoulder or worse, exited their vehicle on the shoulder or on the roadway itself, prior to being impacted. In some cases, stopped vehicles or pedestrians on the roadway cause other cars to collide.
PLEASE don’t become or cause one of those statistics.
A few tips from our expert car accident lawyers in Edmonton:
- Don’t stop on the shoulder.
Stopping on the shoulder of a highway is incredibly dangerous, especially at night! Because of dark and fatigue, other drivers often cannot see what is on the shoulder. If they can, they often brake suddenly and cause mayhem behind them. Even with your flashers on, you are causing a hazard.
Drive to the next exit. Even if you are in a collision, snap a quick photo of the other driver’s license plate and license, THEN PULL OFF OF THE ROAD. If possible, enter a nearby parking lot or exit. Even if you are stopped by a police car, insist on taking the next exit.
If you have no choice but to stop and you are on a high speed road, you and your passengers should consider exiting the vehicle and waiting for help well across the ditch from your stopped vehicle.
- If you have a flat tire, drive to the nearest exit.
We have always been warned about damaging our vehicles by driving on a flat tire. I am warning you about damaging or killing yourself sitting on the side of the road in that stopped vehicle or worse, getting out and trying to change the tire. If another car strikes your vehicle or worse, you directly, the cost of that rim damage won’t seem to matter.
- If you MUST stop on the shoulder for an emergency, pull as far off the road as possible.
If the slope and surface are safe, don’t hesitate to pull right into the ditch. Again, you and your passengers need to exit the vehicle and stand well away, in safety. Climb over the guardrail if there happens to be one, and wait on the other side. If you are in an accident, pull off on the shoulder but get away from the roadway and vehicles if possible.
- Make your vehicle visible and warn other motorists that you are stopped.
Turn on your hazard lights. If you have flares or cones, use them as well.
- If you are driving and see a vehicle is on the shoulder, move over to the next lane if possible.
Whenever possible, you should move over to the next lane is there is a vehicle on the shoulder. Proceed with caution, watching for activity around the stopped vehicle. If a police or emergency vehicle is on the shoulder with flashing lights, the law requires you to move over to the next lane and slow. This maneuver creates a backlash of danger on the highway as a busy highway will feel the impact of a slowing line of traffic long before the cause is in view. Don’t slow down more than you are required and speed up as soon as you pass. It is extreme variance in speed that creates the biggest driving hazard.
- If you have been injured while on the shoulder, while out of your vehicle, or for any reason, call our car accident lawyers in Edmonton at Robinson LLP, The Recovery Team. Or go to our website: www.robinsonllp.com Advice is just a mouseclick away.