Avoid Accidents – Importance of Using Turn Signals

While seemingly obvious, an easy way to avoid accidents on the road is by using turn signals.  Avoid Accidents by Using your Turn Signals explained by TJ Woods Insurance Agency in Worcester MATurn signals are vital to obey the “rules of the road”. Many accidents could easily be evaded if turn signals were used more often. Drivers underestimate the power of turn signals. They are essential for letting drivers know the direction a car wants to go. A turn signal allows others to determine what they should be doing with their car, in relation to the other cars on the road. Turn signals are the only predictor of where a car wants to go.

Whether it’s turning into a parking lot, switching lanes on the highway, or pulling out of side street, when a driver uses their turn signal, they are allowing others know their desired path. Using turn signals is especially crucial in order to avoid accidents on the highway, since cars are moving at a fast velocity and could cause a serious accident if they neglect to use their turn signals.

The article from AOL Autos below explains the impact that turn signals can have in avoiding accidents.

Study: Turn Signal Neglect Now A Serious Safety Issue

A study conducted by the Society of Automotive Engineers made a rather surprising claim when presented last week in Dayton, Ohio: Turn signal neglect is causing millions of crashes per year and may be more dangerous than distracted driving.

SAE observed a total of 12,000 lane-changing and turning vehicles and concluded 25 percent of drivers neglected to signal when turning and a whopping 48 percent neglected to do so when changing lanes. Applying these percentages to U.S. drivers as a whole translates to 750 billion instances of turn signal neglect per year – or more than 2 billion instances per day, according to the study.

The study estimated that approximately 2 million crashes per year are a direct result of this issue.

By comparison, the U.S. Department of Transportation estimates that about 950,000 crashes are the direct result of distracted driving (driving while texting, talking on the phone, eating, putting on makeup, etc.).

“This is a first-of-its-kind report on a subject that amazingly, has never been studied,” said Richard Ponziana, president of RLP Engineering and author of the report. “The turn signal is one of the very original automotive crash prevention devices and this simple driver-to-driver communication device remains extremely effective, but only when it is accurately displayed as required by law.”

“The turn signal can no longer be considered ‘optional’ and all drivers have an ongoing duty to use it, just as they have a duty to stop at a stop sign or at a red light.”

Using turn signals correctly is crucial for avoiding accidents. However, remembering to shut off turn signals is another way that one can avoid accidents. Sometimes, accidents are caused because drivers leave their turn signal on for an extended period of time. For example, if a driver is waiting for an opportune time to pull out onto a street, they may see a car that has left their turn signal on from a previous turn coming towards them. The driver waiting to pull out may misjudge the turn signal and pull out in front of the car they believe to be turning. As one can assume, the accident could have been avoided if the driver of the oncoming car remembered to shut off their turn signal.

There are many other instances in which drivers can avoid accidents by implementing the proper use of turn signals. From judging other cars on the road, to remembering to use turn signals, there are a variety of ways to be a better driver. When you practice safe driving, you will have a better chance of avoiding accidents. When you avoid accidents, you avoid having to pay for damages and risk physical injury.

If you are interested in finding out how you can save money on car accidents, please contact TJ Woods Insurance. We’d be more than happy to answer any questions you may have. Drive safe!

Have you ever been in an accident that could have been avoided if either driver paid closer attention to turn signals?