Sometimes the rules of the road can be confusing, but you can be determined to be at fault if you fail to follow any of them. A two-way stop sign at an intersection can be one of those confusing rules. While some people may be reckless or not pay attention, others may simply fail to understand how this scenario is supposed to work.
Some drivers fail to come to a complete stop at a two-way intersection. They may believe they can beat the other driver but misjudge their timing. This often results in a side-impact collision or a T-bone accident. The injuries in this type of accident can be quite serious.
Other drivers may do what is called a rolling stop. They slow down, almost to a stop but not coming to a complete rest before accelerating again. When they do this, the driver doesn’t have time to check for all traffic before pulling out into the intersection.
Another common problem with two-way intersections is the driver doesn’t realize that cross traffic doesn’t have to stop. They may assume cars coming in the other directions will have to stop and wait their turn. They erroneously believe it is a four-way intersection.
The driver will stop and look for other traffic and then move out into the intersection, believing oncoming traffic will also have to stop. The result is another side-impact collision as the other driver hits the first driver.
These accidents can be serious since the one driver wasn’t slowing down and may not have had time to hit the brakes soon enough. It is common for side-impact accidents to have fatalities because there is not as much protection for the person as in a front or rear collision.
Another scenario at a two-way intersection happens when both cars stop and they start to move forward at the same time because they are not sure who arrived at the intersection first. As one vehicle realizes they must stop, they apply the brakes quickly. This can result in a rear-end collision if the car behind them was too close or was not paying attention.
A person can suffer a variety of injuries in this kind of accident. Traumatic brain injuries, broken bones, spinal cord injuries, lacerations and open wounds can happen when a car collides with another vehicle in an intersection. Side-impact collisions have a high fatality rate even at a slow speed. Rear collisions can cause head and neck trauma, which can range from minor whiplash to more serious injury.
It's important to pay attention at all intersections and notice if you are at a four- or two-way stop. Pay attention to what the other vehicles are doing and proceed with caution. Not only will this help you avoid an accident, but you will be able to provide more details if you are involved in one.