Q

What can you tell me about the problem of turn signal neglect?

A

Imagine that you are driving on I-39, traveling at 65 miles per hour, near Magic Waters in Rockford. You are in the right lane and there is a car in front of you traveling in the left lane. The car is moving at a steady speed and the driver gives no indication that he might want to change lanes. Then, in the blink of an eye, he changes lanes right in front of you, causing you to crash into him from behind.  This is an example of turn signal neglect.

Turn signals are standard safety equipment on all passenger vehicles—they allow drivers to communicate their intentions to others who share the road. When motorists see a turn signal, they automatically adjust their course and speed to avoid running into the turning vehicle.

Failing to use your blinker when you make a turn or lane change, or forgetting to turn your signal off once your turn is complete is called turn signal neglect. It is both dangerous and illegal.

Turn-Signal Study Results

Conclusions from a recent study, conducted by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) and published in April 2012, illustrate the scope of the problem:

    • 25 percent of drivers fail to signal when making a turn
    • 48 percent of drivers fail to signal when changing lanes
    • 48 percent of drivers forget to turn off their turn signals after changing lanes
    • More than 2 million crashes are caused by turn signal neglect

    Using a turn signal is easy and it helps to prevent accidents. If you are lax about signaling, commit to changing that behavior today. And if you have been hurt in an accident caused by a careless driver, contact our office using the contact form on this page. We will evaluate your situation and help you to understand your legal options.