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What Is Failure to Yield?

When a driver ignores another road user’s right of way, otherwise called failure to yield, they may create a dangerous situation that could lead to a car accident. Common collisions caused by this behavior include side-impact, head-on, bicycle, and pedestrian accidents.

What is failure to yield? While many drivers understand that this behavior is dangerous, not everyone understands what it entails. This article delves into failure to yield accidents and laws in the state. Please consult our top Los Angeles Car Accident Attorneys with El Dabe Ritter Trial Lawyers if you have been injured in a failure to yield accident.

Failure to Yield in California

According to the California Vehicle Code Section 21800-21804, a driver about to enter or cross a highway from a public or private property should yield right of way to all traffic. The driver must also yield when approaching a highway at a close enough distance to create a dangerous condition and continue to do so until they can join traffic with reasonable safety.

In essence, failure to yield refers to a driver’s refusal to follow the set rules on when to yield to other drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists. Most cases of failure to yield happen at lane changes and intersections and can be a hazard to everyone involved.

As the Insurance Information Institute reports, failure to yield is the fourth most common dangerous behavior of drivers in fatal accidents. They account for 7.1 percent of all fatal crashes.

Types of Failure to Yield Accidents

In failure to yield accidents, the impact to an oncoming driver, cyclist, or pedestrian is usually head-on, making these collisions all the more dangerous. Some of the ways they occur are when a driver fails to yield to the following:

  • Pedestrians at a designated crossing lane
  • Traffic lights or yield signs
  • Emergency vehicles
  • Oncoming vehicles when turning left on a green light

Failure to yield accidents also often occur when a driver fails to yield when merging or emerging from a private drive or parking space.

Right of Way Laws in California

Right of way laws in California dictate who can proceed when vehicles, bicyclists, and pedestrians meet at an intersection. The following are some of those rules:

  • When two vehicles meet at an intersection, the car on the left should yield to the one on the right.
  • At a 3-way intersection, the vehicle traveling on the road that ends must yield to those on the roadway that continues.
  • When a driver faces a yield sign, they should yield to the vehicle traveling on the road intersecting with the road they are on.
  • All vehicles must yield to pedestrians at crosswalks, regardless of whether the crosswalks are marked or unmarked.
  • Pedestrians who choose to jay-walk must yield to traffic.
  • When a vehicle is turning left at an intersection, it must yield to oncoming traffic.

Consult a Car Accident Attorney

What is failure to yield? California traffic rules require that drivers yield right of way to other drivers in several situations, such as before making a turn or entering a freeway. Usually, the person who fails to yield the right of way is considered at fault for the resulting accident.

Personal injury laws in California can be complex, which is why you will need the assistance of our experienced Los Angeles Car Accident Attorneys. If you have been injured in a failure to yield accident, contact the experienced Personal Injury Attorneys with El Dabe Ritter Trial Lawyers at 888-540-0325 to learn how we can help you pursue damages.