The only way that our roads can remain safe is if every individual abides by traffic laws. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for individuals to violate traffic laws, and this can lead to a citation as well as serious accidents. Here, we want to discuss the main Pennsylvania traffic laws that will most likely lead to a vehicle accident if a person breaks them. If you do find yourself in an accident, be sure to contact our car accident attorneys in Philadelphia.
Speeding and driving too fast for conditions remain a leading cause of vehicle accident injuries and fatalities in Pennsylvania, year after year. According to the PA DOT, we can see that 269 individuals lost their lives as a result of speed-related incidents across the Commonwealth during the latest reporting year. Individuals do not have to be technically speeding to operate their vehicle too fast for conditions. In the event there are adverse weather conditions or heavy traffic congestion, individuals should adjust their speed appropriately.
Driving Under the Influence
Any individual operating under the influence of alcohol or drugs should not be behind the wheel. Impaired driving was the leading cause of traffic-related fatalities during the latest reporting year in Pennsylvania, claiming 293 lives. The legal blood alcohol content level in Pennsylvania is .08%, but individuals can certainly be impaired with a BAC lower than this. Additionally, individuals can also be impaired by illegal narcotics, prescription medications, and over-the-counter medications.
Failing to Yield
Drivers are required to yield in multiple situations on the roadways throughout PA. This includes yielding to other vehicles when merging into traffic or changing lanes, yielding at actual yield signs, yielding to pedestrians and bicyclists, and more. Anytime a driver fails to properly yield the right of way, this can lead to deadly collisions.
Failing to Stop
Stop signs and stoplights are there for a reason, and individuals are required to stop at them when operating their vehicles. Failing to stop at stop signs and stoplights can lead to dangerous T-bone, head-on, or rear-end collisions that result in major injuries or fatalities.
Failing to Use a Turn Signal
Vehicles have turned signals for a reason. Blinkers help ensure that other drivers on the roadway know the signaling driver’s intentions. Turn signals should be used anytime a person intends to make a turn, merge into a lane of traffic, or change lanes.
Driving With no Lights
Individuals must use their lights when required to do so. Of course, this means anytime from sunset to sunrise, including the twilight hours before the sun is completely up or down. Additionally, headlights should be used when there are adverse weather conditions, including rain, smoke, or fog. However, it is important for individuals not to use their high beams when facing oncoming traffic or in the rain, snow, sleep, or fog. The precipitation will capture the light and then amplify it to the point of distraction for drivers.
Following other drivers too closely is one of the worst things a driver can do. More commonly known as tailgating, this can lead to dangerous rear-end collisions should the vehicle in front have to stop suddenly. In general, every driver should follow the two-second rule, which means they should give themselves at least two seconds of time to come to a complete stop if the driver in front of them slams on their brakes.