Injured by an Aggressive Driver
Aggressive driving, defined as a driver who engages in unsafe or bullying behavior to intimidate other drivers, is a growing problem across the United States. According to the motorist organization AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, aggressive driving is the cause of 55 percent of all fatal vehicle accidents annually. Part of the reason could be living in an always-connected society where people aren’t used to waiting. They want to get where they’re going right now and expect everyone else to get out of the way.
Specific Actions That Constitute Aggressive Driving
Anyone can make an honest mistake while driving that others misinterpret as aggressive. However, it’s usually easy to spot true aggression by one or more of the following actions:
- Disregarding traffic signs and devices used to control traffic
- Following another vehicle at a distance that’s too close for either to stop safely
- Changing lanes without looking or signaling
- Make a rude or aggressive gesture at another driver
- Illegal passing, such as on the shoulder of a road or on a one-lane highway
- Challenging another driver to a race by egging him or her on to disregard the posted speed limit
- Consistently turning without signaling intent
- Not yielding right of way to pedestrians or other drivers
- Driving too close to another vehicle, bicyclist, or pedestrian
- Weaving in and out of traffic
- Blasting the car horn for no apparent reason
- Flashing high beams at another driver to attempt to temporarily blind him or her
- Pulling in front of another driver and then braking suddenly
Unfortunately, it only requires a driver engaging in one of these actions for a few seconds to cause a serious accident.
Are Aggressive Driving and Road Rage the Same Thing?
While it’s frustrating to be on the receiving end of someone else’s aggressive driving, it differs considerably from road rage in that the latter qualifies as a criminal offense. An example of road rage would be a driver who intentionally used his or her car as a weapon after getting into some type of altercation with another driver. This type of behavior can get a person time in jail while the actions listed above are more likely to result in fines, loss of driving privileges, and other civil penalties.
How to Respond When You’re in an Accident with an Aggressive Driver
Some aggressive drivers have no respect for the law and will flee the scene of an accident they obviously caused. If this happens to you, gather as much information as you can and turn it over to the local police to investigate. This could include the license plate number or picture of the other vehicle, a description of the driver, and the circumstances leading to the accident. If the other party does cooperate, be sure to get his or her name and insurance information and report it to your own insurance company right away.
It’s essential to seek prompt medical help if you have sustained injuries. If you plan to file a personal injury lawsuit against the other driver, keep track of the date and appointment time, the doctor who treated you, and the treatment he or she prescribed. You will also need to retain the original copy of all billing statements you receive.
You Need Experienced Legal Help When an Aggressive Driver Causes Serious Injuries
At Davis & Haymond, P.S.C., we understand this is an extraordinarily stressful time in your life. Not only are you recovering from significant injuries, you may be unable to work to pay your expenses. Our experienced personal injury attorneys will work hard to obtain a settlement on your behalf. Contact us for a free and confidential review of your case. You may also reach us by phone:
- Irvine, 606-726-9991
- McKee, 606-287-4890
- Richmond, 859-624-3380
We look forward to putting you back on the road to recovery.