Traveling in a car or other motor vehicle always includes the risk of being in a car accident, but if drivers use care to operate their vehicles responsibly, this risk is relatively small. Unfortunately, not all drivers appreciate the need to act reasonably, and some even engage in reckless driving, which puts everyone in the vicinity in danger of being injured. Traveling at high speeds, weaving erratically in and out of traffic, and ignoring traffic signals are all examples of behavior that could be reckless. If another driver or passenger is injured because of a person’s reckless behavior, he/she will likely face legal liability for the harm caused.
The accidents that result from reckless driving are some of the worst on the road, and can greatly alter the lives of the victims. A man in Elkville was recently arrested for reckless driving near local schools, following multiple instances of erratic driving, including speeding past school buses unloading children. While, thankfully, no one was hurt, this situation illustrates how serious reckless driving can be, and shows that it can implicate not only liability for a personal injury but also criminal consequences if egregious. A discussion of what it means to engage in reckless driving, and the potential liability these drivers face if an accident occurs that results in injury, will follow below.
Statistics show that everyone should expect to experience a car accident at some point in their lives, typically three to four per person, though most are not serious. When serious accidents occur, and especially if it appears a driver was operating his/her vehicle in blatant disregard of others on road, moving violations are likely. Whether it be speeding, swerving between lanes without signaling, or other forms of erratic driving, putting others at unnecessary risk is often classified as reckless driving.
In addition, there is a criminal charge called reckless driving and if a driver is charged with this offense, and particularly if he/she is convicted, it will significantly help establish the presence of reckless driving in a personal injury negligence lawsuit. Specifically, any driver who operates a vehicle with willful or wanton disregard for the safety of others falls under the definition of the crime of reckless driving. In fact, even citations for moving violations can help show that negligent driving likely occurred, and is often a key piece of evidence during a trial.
The biggest issue with reckless driving is the catastrophic injuries these accidents often cause, including head trauma, spinal injury, paralysis, and death. Thus, the stakes in a negligence lawsuit are quite high and insurance companies will do everything possible to argue why their client was not responsible for the accident and the injuries.
One approach insurance companies routinely use to mitigate liability is to argue the plaintiff was at fault for some or all of his/her injuries. Illinois follows a comparative fault rule in negligence, which means that if the victim was 50 percent or more at fault for the accident, no recovery is possible. This harsh result underscores the need for an experienced personal injury attorney to handle car accident cases, including those involving reckless driving.
Medical opinions about the source and extent of injury, accident reconstruction experts, and documentation of spthe accident scene are just some of the methods car accident attorneys use to build a strong case that establishes the liability of the defendant. Receiving compensation for past and future medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering are crucial to regaining a semblance of normal life, and seeking the services of a personal injury attorney is the most effective way to ensure this result happens.
Reckless driving has the potential to ruin lives, and if you suffered an injury in a car accident, you deserve the opportunity to receive damages. The dedicated DuPage County car accident attorneys at the Mevorah Law Offices, LLC understand how overwhelming car accident injuries can be, and strive to provide our clients with representation that takes some this burden away. Contact us today for professional assistance with your case.
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