Auto No-Fault Law Blog

Michigan Dangerous Roads: I-496 & US-127 Accidents In Lansing

Drivers Need More Patience, Less Confusion & Fewer Distractions

I-496 and US-127 accidents in Lansing are a common occurrence. Every week, we see or hear about at least one car crash along this three-mile stretch of highUS-127-accident-lansingway near downtown Lansing.

This is one reason why the I-496 and US-127 corridor has been designated a Michigan dangerous road by the Sinas Dramis Law Firm’s “Understanding Dangerous Roads” campaign.

Detailed reports of Lansing accidents on US-127 and I-496 show that motorists involved in collisions in this area were often:

  • driving higher than the posted speed limit.
  • confused about the flow of traffic.
  • distracted while driving.

I-496 And US-127 Accidents In Lansing:  The Numbers Don’t Lie

There were 244 Lansing accidents on US-127 and I-496 from January 1, 2014 through December 31, 2015.*  In those 244 crashes, more than 400 people were reportedly injured.

Notably, 140 of these accidents were single-car pile ups, with no other vehicles involved. This indicates that the US-127 and I-496 interchange can be confusing for drivers, with motorists being uncertain which lanes to use. This lane confusion can easily result in a crash not just on the highway itself, but also on the shoulder, the median or on an exit/entrance ramp.

During this same two-year period, multiple vehicles were also involved in numerous I-496 and US-127 collisions. Statistics show there were 91 accidents that involved 2 cars; 10 crashes that involved 3 cars; and 3 accidents that involved 4 cars.

When combined, these numbers equal a total of 364 vehicles, with one or more passengers, involved in Lansing accidents on US-127 and I-496 during 2014 and 2015.


Lansing Accidents On US-127 And I-496:  The Reasons

While many factors can cause Michigan car accidents, the US-127 and I-496 corridor is prevalent to both single-vehicle and multiple-vehicle collisions. So why the high number of Lansing accidents on this stretch of highway?

Based on detailed accident reports, the answer appears to be:

  • driver confusion about the traffic patterns.
  • risky driving behavior, particularly speeding.
  • distracted driving, especially cell phone use.

A big contributor to accidents along the US-127 and I-496 area is the traffic pattern in general, and the lane mergers and exit/entrance ramps in particular. Simply put, the shifting traffic patterns create confusion for motorists. Because of this, it would be helpful for drivers who are unfamiliar with the highway to use a GPS device and gain a better understanding about the flow of traffic in the area. This way, drivers aren’t forced to make quick decisions while traveling at a high rate of speed.

Speaking of speed, unlike certain other roadways across the state, the recent Michigan speed limit increase did not impact the US-127 and I-496 corridor — the speed limit remains 70 mph. However, it’s unnecessary for drivers to travel this fast if they’re unfamiliar with highway. In fact, accident reports indicate that many drivers are speeding while attempting to rapidly change lanes, in order to remain on their correct travel route. This type of driving behavior — speeding and making snap decisions — greatly increases the chances of an accident.

Motorists traveling the US-127 and I-496 corridor should also avoid being distracted while driving, particularly using their cell phones. The risk of being in a Michigan auto accident increases dramatically when drivers talk, text, email or post social media updates on their cell phones while operating a vehicle. Moreover, the chance of an accident spikes even more when a motorist is distracted while driving a roadway that is already known as dangerous, due to shifting traffic flow and lane mergers.


Tips For Traveling Lansing’s US-127 And I-496 Corridor

To help stay safe and prevent auto accidents on the US-127 and I-496 interchange, it is recommended that motorists:

  • Drive with patience.
  • Drive the posted speed limit (or slightly below, if unfamiliar with the area).
  • Avoid being distracted while driving. Do not:
    1. use a cell phone (talk, text, email and post on social media).
    2. talk with vehicle passengers.
    3. eat and drink.
    4. mess with the vehcle’s radio, navigation or entertainment system.
  • Always use turn signals when changing lanes.
  • Do no cut in front of other drivers or quickly switch lanes.
  • Be extra cautious.

If you’ve been injured while traveling the I-496 and US-127 interchange, our Lansing car accident lawyers are available to answer your questions. Contact our Michigan accident attorneys today for a free initial consultation.

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* most recent statistics – source: Michigan Traffic Crash Facts

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