General Louisiana Rule Concerning Duty of a Driver in a Car Accident at Intersection Without Traffic Lights

LOUISIANA CAR ACCIDENTS AT INTERSECTIONS (DRIVER DUTIES: NO TRAFFIC SIGNAL, OBSTRUCTED VIEW OF RIGHT-OF-WAY STREET, FLASHING YELLOW LIGHT; RED LIGHT THAT TURNS GREEN; PREEMPTION OF INTERSECTION)

The duty of a motorist who approaches an uncontrolled intersection with a street of equal dignity is to determine that he can make the crossing safely before proceeding into the intersection. Soniat v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., 340 So.2d 1097 (La.App. 4th Cir. 1976); Gutelius v. Phoenix Ins. Co., 266 So.2d 717 (La.App. 4th Cir. 1972). Therefore, when two cars approach an uncontrolled intersection of local neighborhood streets, neither motorist can reasonably believe he has an unqualified right of way.

If you need help or have any question about your car accident at an intersection without traffic lights, call me at 866-558-9151 or submit your inquiry online. Please be advised that you may be facing important legal deadlines so don't delay.

INTERSECTION WHERE THE VIEW OF THE RIGHT-OF-WAY STREET IS OBSTRUCTED;

A driver entering a right-of-way street where the view is obstructed is under a duty to proceed with extraordinary caution. Doucas v. Universal Underwriters Ins. Co., 334 So.2d 767 (La.App. 3rd Cir. 1976); Continental Ins. Co. v. Duthu, 235 So.2d 182 (La.App. 4th Cir. 1970).

FLASHING YELLOW LIGHT AT INTERSECTION

A flashing yellow light at an intersection is an indication to reasonable persons that the intersection is more dangerous than ordinary intersections. Salles v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., 395 So.2d 942 (La.App. 2d Cir.1981), writ denied, 400 So.2d 903 (La.1981); Landrum v. New Amsterdam Casualty Co., 149 So.2d 182 (La.App. 3d Cir.1963). Furthermore, a flashing yellow light informs drivers that they should exercise a greater degree of care and vigilance when approaching the intersection. Id.

DRIVER WITH RED LIGHT THAT CHANGES TO GREEN

A motorist halted at an intersection awaiting a change in traffic signals must exercise a degree of care dependent upon the circumstance before proceeding into the intersection after receiving a favorable light. He must wait for clearance of a vehicle which entered the intersection before the change of signal. Bettis v. Paulsen-Webber Cordage Corp., 217 So.2d 662 (La.App. 4 Cir. 1969); Close v. Lumbermens Mutual Casualty Company, 207 So.2d 571 (La.App. 3 Cir. 1968).

PREEMPTION OF INTERSECTION

In order to preempt an intersection, the motorist must show that he made a lawful entry, at a proper speed, after ascertaining that oncoming traffic was sufficiently removed to permit a safe passage and under the bona fide belief and expectation that he can negotiate a crossing with safety. He must show that he entered the intersection at a proper speed and sufficiently in advance of the vehicle on the intersecting street to permit him to cross without requiring an emergency stop by the other vehicle. Price v. City of Slidell, 97-2066 (La.App. 1 Cir. 9/25/98), 723 So.2d 455, 460:

If you need help or have any question about your car accident at an intersection, call me at 866-558-9151 or submit your inquiry online. Please be advised that you may be facing important legal deadlines so don't delay.