Reckless driving can cause a side-impact collision. When a driver is reckless, they operate with less caution than is necessary, and they become a danger to others. The elevated risk caused by reckless driving could result in a side-impact collision.
What Is Reckless Driving?
The Texas Transportation Code § 545.401 states that reckless driving is when a motorist shows “wilful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property.” Reckless driving may include:
- Driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Changing lanes in a dangerous manner
- Disobeying traffic signals
- Driving in a way that is dangerous based on weather or road conditions
Depending on the circumstances, distracted driving may qualify as reckless driving. So long as a motorist’s behavior shows clear disregard for others’ safety, then they may be guilty of reckless driving.
How Can Reckless Driving Cause a Side-Impact Collision
In a general sense, reckless driving increases the overall risk that an accident will occur. Reckless drivers operate their vehicle in an unsafe manner, according to Texas law. Any time a motorist operates in an unsafe manner, an accident can result directly from their actions.
Examples where reckless driving can cause a side-impact collision include:
- A driver who recklessly ignores a red light or stop sign striking the side of a vehicle that is proceeding through an intersection
- A driver who is speeding striking the side of another vehicle because they are unable to stop in time
- A driver who is intoxicated, on drugs, or distracted striking the side of another vehicle because they do not see the vehicle
There are many scenarios in which reckless driving can cause a side-impact collision. If you are the victim of a side-impact collision caused by a reckless driver, then you have a unique set of circumstances. Your collision may entitle you to compensation from a reckless driver.
Why Do Motorists Engage in Reckless Driving?
There are many reasons why motorists drive recklessly—none of the reasons are excusable. According to the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI), anger can lead a motorist to drive aggressively (i.e. recklessly). Motorists may also drive recklessly because:
- They are running late
- They are overly confident in their driving abilities
- They are inexperienced
- They do not understand the rules of the road
- They are distracted
- They are trying to impress others
- They find reckless driving exciting
The particular reason for reckless driving is not always important in side-impact collision cases. The fact that a motorist drives aggressively, and causes an accident as a result, may be most important.
Who Is at Fault for a Side-Impact Collision?
A driver who operates their vehicle recklessly may generally be at fault. However, every single detail matters when determining liability for a side-impact collision.
Some questions that our firm considers when determining fault include:
- Did the reckless motorist cause their accident because of their recklessness?
- Did other motorists involved in the accident do anything that contributed to the collision?
- Is there evidence that one or more motorists was reckless?
- What do witnesses to the accident say?
- What did the responding officer conclude in their accident report?
In some cases, both drivers are liable for a side-impact collision. Even if you are partially liable for your side-impact collision, you may receive compensation from another liable party. Texas’ comparative fault statutes dictate that, if you are responsible for 30% of your accident, then the other party may be responsible for 70% of your losses (generally speaking).
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What Are the Dangers of Side-Impact Collisions?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) notes that vehicles generally have side impact protection like side airbags. However, a side-impact collision may expose drivers and passengers to near-direct contact with another vehicle. Rather than having a bumper or front end to absorb the impact of a collision, only a door may stand between you and the oncoming vehicle.
The two most serious outcomes from a side-impact collision are:
You may file an insurance claim or lawsuit in response to either of these outcomes.
What Coverage Can Victims of Reckless Driving Collect?
As the victim of a side-impact collision, you may receive financial coverage for:
- Medical expenses
- Diminished earning power
- Lost productivity
- Lost income
- Pain and suffering
- Treatment for pain and suffering
- Funeral expenses
- Loss of a parent or spouse
- Lost financial support from a deceased loved one
- Any other losses from your side-impact accident
A lawyer from our firm will pursue fair compensation for you or a loved one.
Contact our personal injury lawyers today
Call Loncar Lyon Jenkins About Your Side-Impact Collision
Call in the Strong Arm after a side-impact collision in Texas. Loncar Lyon Jenkins will lead your case from start to finish, fighting for the recovery that you deserve. We may have a limited time to file your case, so do not wait.
Call Loncar Lyon Jenkins today for a free, no-obligation consultation.