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dangerous intersections Los Angeles

It’s no secret that Los Angeles has some of the worst traffic in the United States.

According to data from TomTom, LA is the second most congested city in the country, right behind New York City.

This not only results in lost time for drivers but also increases the risk of an accident.

Unfortunately, many of these crashes lead to an injury or death. 

Since Los Angeles has some of the most dangerous intersections in California, it’s best to know where they are so you can exercise caution or avoid them altogether.

Why Are Intersections So Dangerous?

Despite there being signals and other systems in place to make intersections safer, they are the root of most car accidents.

In fact, a study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) found that 40% of all accidents occur at an intersection.

Almost all these accidents are preventable, and the cause usually involves some form of driver error, such as:

  • Distracted driving,
  • Inattentive driving,
  • Illegal maneuvers or turns,
  • Misjudging another car’s speed,
  • Turning or driving with an obstructed view, and
  • Speeding or aggressive driving.

Many of these collisions end up being side-impacts as well. This is particularly problematic because the side of a vehicle doesn’t offer as much protection as the front or back.

As a result, many side-impact or T-bone collisions involve serious injuries or deaths.

An Overview of Los Angeles Accident Statistics

For this case study, we’ve compiled data from several sources, including the Los Angeles Police Department’s online dataset as well as their annual report.

Based on this information, we’ve selected the top 10 roads with the most reported traffic accidents in 2021.

Currently, these are the most dangerous roads in Los Angeles by accident count.

Street NameNumber of Accidents
Western Avenue 285
Figueroa Street259
Sherman Way228
Sepulveda Boulevard195
Roscoe Boulevard193
Vermont Avenue193
Sunset Boulevard191
Vanowen Street190
Normandie Avenue170
Source: LAPD Traffic Collision Date from 2010 to Present

This data combined with the LAPD’s annual accident report presents some intriguing findings. For example, the citywide traffic report recorded 1,479 crashes involving an injury and 294 involving at least one death.

Interestingly, a majority of these injuries and deaths occurred in the areas where the roads listed above are located.

A third of all injury and fatality accidents in Los Angeles occurred in the Valley Bureau, which serves the area around San Fernando.

Another 30% of accidents happened in the South Bureau, which sits near most of the streets in the top 10 and serves all of South Los Angeles. 

The Most Dangerous Intersections in Los Angeles

So how does all of this correlate with the most dangerous intersections in Los Angeles? Well, the LAPD also listed the intersections that they consider high risk due to their number of serious accidents.

In 2021, the worst intersections for each bureau were:

  1. West Bureau: N. Highland Avenue & Hollywood Boulevard
  2. Central Bureau: San Pedro Street & Washington Boulevard
  3. South Bureau: Florence Avenue & Vermont Avenue
  4. Valley Bureau: Oxnard Street & Van Nuys Boulevard

At Highland and Hollywood, there were 17 crashes reported with speeding as the primary cause.  The intersection at San Pedro and Washington came in a close second, with 14 reported accidents.

Unusually, the problem intersections for the Valley Bureau and the South Bureau had less. So what does this mean?

Simply put, these are the most dangerous intersections when it comes to serious injuries or fatalities.

Going by accident count alone, there are other intersections in these areas that surpass the ones listed by the LAPD in their annual report.

For example, based on their database, these are some other intersections with a high number of accidents in 2021:

  • Sherman Way & Bellaire Avenue – 11
  • Sherman Way & Whitsett Avenue – 11
  • Venice Boulevard & Highland Avenue – 10
  • Balboa Boulevard & Devonshire Street – 10

Immediately, we see that many of these crashes occurred in the jurisdiction of the Valley Bureau.

Based on this information, it’s clear that these areas still carry danger because their accidents are widespread.

However, they may not have a single intersection that stands out among the rest.

The Most Dangerous Intersections for Pedestrians and Bicyclists

While it’s easy to just focus on car accidents, there are also collisions that involve pedestrians or bicyclists.

Even though there are fewer of these incidents than standard auto accidents, they are far more deadly.

This means it’s even more important for pedestrians and bicyclists to avoid dangerous intersections.

In 2021, there were 627 accidents between a vehicle and a pedestrian that involved an injury or fatality. Again, most of these accidents happened in South LA and near the San Fernando Valley.

However, these are the four most dangerous intersections for pedestrians:

  • Avalon Boulevard & Imperial Highway;
  • Cesar E. Chavez Avenue & Soto Street;
  • De Soto Avenue & Lassen Street; and
  • N. Highland Avenue & Hollywood Boulevard.

In almost all of the reported accidents at these intersections, the driver failed to yield to the pedestrian. If you ever find yourself walking in these areas, use extra caution when crossing. 

For bicyclists, the trouble intersections are completely different. In total, there were 265 bicycle accidents with a reported injury or fatality in 2021.

In addition, many of the accidents with bicyclists happen due to speeding, failure to stop, or making an unsafe turn.

These intersections include:

  • Humboldt Street & San Fernando Road
  • Valley Vista Boulevard & Van Nuys Boulevard
  • Anaheim Street & King Avenue
  • La Brea Avenue & Sunset Boulevard

Like pedestrian accidents, inattentive or negligent drivers cause these crashes more often than not. For this reason, it’s important to exercise the same caution you would if you were walking.

Speak to an Attorney If You Sustain an Injury in a Los Angeles Accident

Due to traffic congestion, LA has some of the worst intersections in California. This means that anybody can experience an accident at any time.

If you or a loved one suffers injuries after an accident, you need a trustworthy attorney that communicates with you throughout the entire claims process.

To schedule a free consultation with a Los Angeles attorney, call Weinberg Law Offices at 818-697-1079.

Author Photo

As a personal injury attorney, my mantra is that there is no such thing as a “small case”. I will give 100% matter how big or small a case may be. I am fluent in English, Hebrew, and Spanish, languages which I use regularly in my practice.

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