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Rotary Car Accident

Rotary Accidents in Rhode Island

With 18 rotaries across the state, collisions are inevitable. At a rotary, also known as a roundabout, traffic only flows in one direction around a middle island.  With no traffic signals to direct you, driver awareness is especially important when navigating around these circular intersections.  However, many drivers in Rhode Island are unfamiliar with who has the right of way at a rotary, unaware of their surroundings, or distracted. As injury attorneys at Tapalian Law, we see dozens of car accidents involving roundabouts, especially in high traffic areas like Warwick, Providence and East Greenwich, and we can help you recover compensation if you are injured in one of these crashes.

Rhode Island has built several new roundabouts, and retrofitted others, in recent years. For example, the Apponaug Circulator in Warwick was designed with five roundabouts to lessen the load of traffic flowing through this historical section of the city. The new traffic pattern, completed in 2017, reduced the number of vehicles going through the village center of Apponaug from 25,000 vehicles per day to less than 7,000 vehicles per day.  One-way, circular intersections like these were installed by the state with the goal of reducing injuries and fatalities from auto collisions. However, even with safety improvements made, drivers still sustain serious injuries from rotary crashes. If you have been hurt in an accident at a roundabout, an injury lawyer experienced with rotary collisions in RI can help you seek justice for your losses.

Common Types of Roundabout Accidents

At Tapalian Law, our lawyers see rotary accidents involving many different types of collisions. Here are the three most common types of crashes involving a rotary that our legal experts can help you with:

  • Rear-End Collisions: The speed limit in a roundabout is typically much slower than in a traditional intersection and drivers can get impatient. If a driver is following you too closely, it could result in a rear-end collision.
  • Sideswipe Collisions: Many rotaries in Rhode Island have multiple lanes. Drivers can attempt to make last minute lane switches and negligently sideswipe other cars. Often, one car can be ran off the road onto the island of the rotary.  
  • T-Bone Collisions: When drivers are entering a rotary, they may fail to yield to you. Often times this leads to a T-bone collision, which occurs when one driver hits the side of another vehicle head-on. These collisions are highly dangerous because they involve direct impact to both cars. They often lead to more serious injuries than other types of car accidents.
Who Has the Right of Way at a Rotary?

In Rhode Island, there are specific laws regarding the right-of-way at a rotary. Essentially, the statute articulates that drivers entering a rotary have to yield to drivers already in the rotary. If a driver pulls into a rotary in front of you and causes an accident, they will likely be found at fault. An experienced Rhode Island rotary accident attorney will work on your behalf to prove negligence on the part of the driver who hit you and hold the motorist liable for your damages.

According to Section 31-17-8 of Rhode Island General Law, “In the absence of any traffic light, the driver about to enter the rotary has to yield to the right of way to all vehicles already in the rotary, regardless of the direction from which the vehicle is approaching. If the driver that injures you did not have the right of way and is found an ‘offending operator’ they can face fines up to $500, temporary suspension of their license”.

How Can I File a Personal Injury Claim After a Car Accident?

If you are hurt in a car crash at a rotary, you may be eligible to file a personal injury claim to hold the responsible driver liable for your losses. Damages may include compensation for medical expenses, emotional distress, lost wages, and property damage.  To proceed with an injury claim, you must prove that the other driver acted negligently and that their negligence caused the accident. Crashes that occur at a roundabout can be complex especially when multiple vehicles are involved and there is a question of who is at-fault, therefore it is always advised to seek the counsel of a skilled personal injury attorney.

Liability for rotary collisions falls under the “duty of care” that applies to all drivers on the road. Drivers are obligated to drive in a safe way that will not pose a risk to the safety of others. Failure to drive reasonably can result in liability for a rotary accident.  Due to the Rhode Island statute involving right of way at a rotary, liability may be easier to determine than in other types of auto accidents. However, the process to prove liability and negligence at a roundabout can still be intricate.

Attorney David Tapalian is a Rhode Island Rotary Accident Lawyer who will aggressively pursue all options to get you the compensation you deserve after you are hurt in an auto accident.  Tapalian Law’s personal injury experts will help to establish strong evidence for your claim and help you navigate the legal process. With our strong network of resources, we will help you obtain accurate police reports, retrieve witness statements to corroborate your story, and even refer you to medical specialists that can aid in your recovery. Should Attorney Tapalian deem it advisable, he will properly prepare you for potential statements with the defendant’s insurance company. Let us take care of all the difficult aspects of your case so you can focus on healing.

Speak with a Rhode Island Accident Attorney for Free at Tapalian Law

Dealing with a traumatic car accident can be stressful, and you may be unsure of how to proceed in the aftermath. To ensure that you have the strongest legal representation on your side, contact the lawyers at Tapalian Law today. Let Attorney Tapalian’s 20+ years of experience assist you with the difficult aspects of filing a personal injury claim. With a main office on South Main Street in Providence, and offices in Warwick, RI and Seekonk, MA, we are easily accessible for anyone in Rhode Island. Our dedicated team of injury experts at Tapalian Law can walk you through the steps to receive the compensation you deserve. As with all personal injury claims in Rhode Island, there is a 3-year statute of limitations on filing a car accident claim so it is important that you consult us immediately. Call us today at 401-552-5000 or contact us online to set up a free consultation.

Client Reviews
He took care of everything and kept me updated as well. It was such a smooth process and in the end I won my case. I would highly recommend David Tapalian! Patrice F.
When I contacted David Tapalian, Attorney & Counselor at Law, all my worries were immediately alleviated. He handled my case from beginning to end and kept me updated every step of the way. Susie M.
I visited David a couple of days after my accident and he gave me clear and concise details on what would happen throughout the process... David N.