One minute, you’re on your way home from work. The next thing you know, the driver in front of you slams on their brakes, and you’re trying desperately to not rear-end them.
Sometimes, it seems that no matter how much you do to stay safe, there are some roads where you have to be on high alert to get home safe. Statistics show that this is definitely true for Kansas City.
So what are the most dangerous highways and intersections in Kansas City, Missouri? Read on to learn all about them.
How to Identify Dangerous Highways
You’re probably wondering what it is that makes a highway dangerous. It may seem that some highways just have more dangerous drivers, but there are actually many things that factor into the high rates of accidents on a highway.
First and foremost is the number of drivers who use the highway or go through the intersection each day. The more drivers, the greater the opportunity for an accident.
Second is the overall condition of the road. Is it run-down with a lot of ruts and potholes? It may have trees and other foliage covering up important signage alerting you to narrowing lanes or sharp turns.
Other things that contribute to dangerous highways and intersections include a lack of guardrails or shoulders, uncovered ditches, and improper grading. Pay special attention to roads that are under construction because they’re often unpaved and lack important elements like painted lines on the road.
I-435 and Front Street
First up on the list of dangerous roads and intersections in Kansas City is the intersection of I-435 and Front Street. This particular intersection is situated in the northeast corner of the city.
Here, I-435 is a bridge over Front Street, but the lanes on Front Street criss-cross on both sides of the highway, making for a super confusing set of intersections. As a result, there are numerous car accidents at this large intersection.
I-70 and I-435 Interchange
The I-70 and I-435 interchange is perhaps the most dangerous intersection in Kansas City. Have you ever looked at a map of Kansas City’s highways? If you look at the map and happen upon an interchange that looks like a knotted up ball of yarn, then you’ve found the I-70 and I-435 interchange.
This particular interchange is super busy and difficult to navigate, especially in rush hour traffic. It’s no surprise then that this intersection is the site of frequent accidents.
South Kansas City’s Highway 71
The north-south running Highway 71 may not have the highest number of accidents, but when accidents occur here, they’re more likely to be deadly. This stretch of road runs for less than eight miles before merging with I-45, but of the 17 crashes here during 2015 and 2016, there were nine total fatalities.
I-29 and Barry Road
Last, but certainly not least, is I-29 and Barry Road. Situated in the northwest section of Kansas City, this particular intersection sees numerous car accidents per year.
Here, the highway, exit, and on-ramps all form a classic cloverleaf. But roads with bridges and curved roads always lend themselves to accidents, particularly during rush hour traffic. Always stay alert when you’re driving through this intersection.
How to Stay Safe
Apart from avoiding highways and intersections that have less-than-desirable conditions, how do you stay safe on the road?
The number one thing you can do to keep yourself and other drivers safe is to always be alert when you’re driving, especially during stop-and-go traffic. Text messages and phone calls can wait until you reach your destination, and don’t even think about putting on your makeup on the way to work.
The second thing you can do is to always know what kind of weather conditions you’re facing when you get on the road. Poor conditions require specialized driving skills and extra caution. If the roads are snowy or icy, try to avoid getting on them until they’ve been cleared; otherwise, make sure your vehicle up to the job.
Finally, don’t expect other drivers to take the necessary safety precautions. Always be prepared to react!
What Do You Do If You’re Injured on the Highway?
The first rule of thumb, if you’re involved in an accident, is to never make any statements about whether you’re injured. Injuries often take time to develop; for example, whiplash, one of the most common injuries, takes up to 24 hours to show up after an accident. In addition to that, you may not feel any pain at the time of the accident because of stress or adrenaline.
Assume that everything you say to the other party or to witnesses will be repeated in a deposition or in court. If you say you’re fine right after the accident, then it may have an impact on your credibility if you claim that you were badly injured. You should also refrain from making any statements about your liability for the accident.
Once you’re done dealing with things that need immediate attention, such as giving a statement to police or getting medical attention, you should contact an attorney to assess what your next steps should be. Experienced attorneys know how to deal with insurance companies or state agencies and can help get you the compensation you deserve.
Keep an Eye out on Kansas City’s Most Dangerous Highways
Does Kansas City have the most dangerous highways in the country? Definitely not, but it does have stretches of highways and intersections that are more tricky to navigate than others.
Remember to always stay alert, avoid the roads as much as you can during bad weather, and always consult with an attorney if you’ve been injured on the road.
Are you in need of an effective attorney to help you recover after being injured on the road? You’ve come to the right place! Contact us today to see what we can do for you.
Adam Krause is a personal injury, mass tort, business litigation, and employment discrimination attorney who practices in Kansas City, Missouri. He graduated from the University of Missouri Kansas City School of Law and has been practicing law for several years now. Adam Krause has made a career of taking complicated litigation and presenting it in the most elementary terms for a jury of your peers to understand. Learn more about his experience here.