Understanding Maryland’s Right-of-Way Laws

Although most people do their best to follow traffic rules, every driver has had to yield their right-of-way to prevent an accident from taking place. Sometimes, however, drivers fail to yield their right-of-way entirely, which could cause devastating consequences for all parties involved. In Maryland and across the United States generally, failure-to-yield car collisions remain common—and can often become tricky cases to pursue because both parties will argue that they had the right-of-way.

According to a recent news report, a motorcyclist was hit by a car driven by a motorist who failed to yield the right of way at a stop sign. Local authorities say that the car driver was attempting to make a turn when she failed to yield the right of way to the motorcyclist. The motorcyclist was pronounced dead at the scene, and the car driver’s passenger was transported to a local hospital for treatment of minor injuries. State police say that the circumstances surrounding the crash remain under investigation.

Who Needs to Yield the Right of Way in Maryland?

In Maryland, the state Motor Vehicle Administration has explicit rules on when drivers should yield the right-of-way and how to share the road with other motorists and pedestrians. According to the Maryland Driver’s Manual provided by the state agency, no driver should automatically assume that they have the right-of-way, and drivers are responsible for controlling their own vehicles to avoid crashes whenever possible in different roadway layouts and contexts.

At Maryland intersections, for example, drivers must yield the right-of-way to drivers who arrive at the intersection before you, drivers on your right if both vehicles arrive at the intersection at the same time, to the driver on your right at a four-way stop marked by stop signs, and other to motorists, pedestrians, and cyclists who may already be in the intersection. Drivers who need to make left turns at intersections are also expected to yield the right-of-way to traffic in opposing lanes. At intersections without four stops, drivers are expected to respect and adhere to yield signage on the road, if applicable, and are expected to yield the right-of-way to cars traveling on public roads if you are entering the street from a private driveway or road.

In addition to other vehicles or motorcycles, pedestrians are also commonly sharing the road with motorcyclists. Maryland laws require that drivers must stop for pedestrians at stop walks, yield to pedestrians when attempting to make a left at a green light, and yield to pedestrians when at a turn with a red light. Pedestrians generally have the right-of-way at most street crossings, even if the crosswalk or stop walk is not clearly marked.

Do You Need a Maryland Personal Injury Attorney?

If you or someone you know has been recently injured in a failure-to-yield accident in Maryland, contact the attorneys at Lebowitz & Mzhen today. Our lawyers have recovered more than $55 million for our clients and have a wide range of experience handling personal injury and motorcycle accident claims of all kinds. To schedule a free consultation today, contact us at 800-543-1949.



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