By Christopher T. McGrath Esq.   New York

Under New York Law, a driver approaching an intersection with a green light must take note of all the surrounding circumstances before entering that intersection.  Even with a green light, a driver must be aware of other traffic which may be entering the intersection.

In Nuziale v. Paper Transport of Green Bay Incorporated, 835 N.Y.2d 136, 39 A.D.3d 833 (2nd Dept. 2007), the defendant was driving a tractor trailer down an exit ramp from the Grand Central Parkway.  She proceeded through a green light at the bottom of the ramp and collided with the vehicle operated by the plaintiff.  The defendant moved for summary judgment, arguing that she could not be held liable for the collision because she was proceeding with a greet light.  The Supreme Court, Queens County granted the defendant’s motion.  The Appellate Division, Second Department, however, overturned that decision and reinstated the plaintiff’s case.  The defendant had testified at her deposition that she was “coasting” through the intersection, that she failed to look to her left or her right before proceeding in the intersection, and that she could not recall whether her view of traffic was obstructed.  The Appellate Division held that although the defendant had been permitted to proceed in the face of the green light, she “was not authorized to blindly and wantonly enter the intersection see
Greco v. Boyce  262 A.D.2d 734, 735 (3d Dep’t 1999).

In New York, an attorney with experience handling cases arising from car accidents will know that just because the other driver had the green light does not absolve him or her from talking note of the traffic conditions upon entering an intersection. Thus under certain circumstances a jury can still apportion fault to a driver who had the green light. That means that even if you are somewhat at fault in having entered an intersection there may still be a basis to recover monetary damages for your injuries. That is why you need to consult with a lawyer skilled in handling these cases to learn what your rights are. News Source: – Press Release Distribution

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