Entering roadway from opposing private driveways

Posts: 1

Entering roadway from opposing private driveways

Unread post by radonso »

Not sure if this is the right forum or not, did a little searching and couldn't find much help.

My question is regarding 2 vehicles entering the roadway (both left hand turns) from opposing private driveways.

Situation (Accident) is this.

Car A is turning left (south) onto roadway from driveway (Esso). Road is 4 lanes plus a turn lane (Ontario & SSR in beamsville if you want to see an arial shot)

Car B begins to make a right hand turn (south) then decides that traffic is to busy and changes mid turn to go left (north).

Car B and Car A collide. Car B hits rear passenger door and rear wheel of Car A. Car B is damaged on passenger side headlight area. Car A is in the northbound turn lane (facing south) and generally clear of opposing driveway edges.

Where does fault lie? Is there any provisions for right of way in this situation in the HTA? My thinking is that if both directions of the roadway are clear then it would be treated as an intersection.

My insurance is saying its 50/50 but from what i can see from the Insurance Fault Determination rules (using 13.2 and 13.3) the fault would be on Car B 100%

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Simon Borys
Posts: 1065

Unread post by Simon Borys »

Section 139(1) of the HTA applies here.

139. (1) Every driver or street car operator entering a highway from a private road or driveway shall yield the right of way to all traffic approaching on the highway so closely that to enter would constitute an immediate hazard. R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8, s. 139 (1).

I can see the insurance company's point of view that both drivers should have yielded to each other, since the way was not clear (evidenced by the fact that there was a collision). Certainly if either driver had yielded, the other one would not have had to, but two wrongs don't make a right.

If one of the two vehicles was clearly in the roadway before the other one left the driveway, I would suggest that vehicle had the right of way. I don't know if that was the case in this situation.

The other thing to consider is that if a driver entered the road way and actually began to make a turn in one direction and then changed course to make a turn in another direction, 142(1) - Improper Turn - might apply.

142. (1) The driver or operator of a vehicle upon a highway before turning to the left or right at any intersection or into a private road or driveway or from one lane for traffic to another lane for traffic or to leave the roadway shall first see that the movement can be made in safety, and if the operation of any other vehicle may be affected by the movement shall give a signal plainly visible to the driver or operator of the other vehicle of the intention to make the movement. R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8, s. 142 (1).

I would suggest that Improper Turn doesn't apply when coming FROM a private drive onto the highway, however, if a vehicle was already on the highway, making a turn in one direction and then aborted that turn and made another (unsafe) turn in a different direction, then they were on the highway when they made the second turn and 142(1) applies. If the turn resulted in a collision they should be guilty of Improper Turn and at fault for the accident.

So obviously there are several different ways to look at it, depending on your point of view and how you articulate the actions of each driver. That being said, it doesn't really matter who's at fault under the HTA, insurance companies make their own determinations of fault, not necessarily in accordance with who has violated the HTA.

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Radar Identified
Posts: 2881
Location: Toronto

Unread post by Radar Identified »

I would think, based on the Fault Determination Rules, that car B is 100% at fault... unless Car A was turning left into the right-most lane. Based on your description, it seems as though what really happened was car A was turning left, car B turning right, and then car B made an improper lane change and banged into car A. Car B was trying to alter course to make a left turn, but it really was an improper lane change, from a technical point of view. So I agree that car B should be 100% at fault. You may want to discuss that with your insurance adjuster, and if you can't get a resolution, contact the Financial Services Commission of Ontario.

The insurance company will only use the Fault Determination Rules to determine fault, not the HTA. Sad, but true... there are several situations that I can think of off the top of my head where a driver would be completely charged under the HTA for a collision, but be found 0% at fault by insurance.

* The above is NOT legal advice. By acting on anything I have said, you assume responsibility for any outcome and consequences. *
http://www.OntarioTicket.com OR http://www.OHTA.ca

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