About Sideswipe Accidents in Texas
Car accidents can happen in a number of ways, but one of the most common types of crashes is the sideswipe collision. A sideswipe happens when one vehicle hits another along its side, effectively swiping the side of the vehicle. Although this may sound less serious than a head-on collision or rollover, sideswipe accidents are incredibly dangerous with a high potential for serious injuries and extensive property damage.
How Sideswipe Accidents Happen
The most common reason for a sideswipe accident is when one driver drifts into an adjacent lane and strikes another vehicle. This can happen from driving under the influence, poor visibility, a vehicle defect, sudden tire blowout, or simply inattention. Most of the damage in a sideswipe accident comes from the struck driver overreacting to the situation. It’s not uncommon for a driver to lose control of his or her vehicle after a sideswipe. This can lead to a multiple-vehicle accident and even more serious injuries and damage.
Some sideswipe accidents are single-vehicle crashes, most often resulting from a driver hitting a guardrail “cattle chute,” median strip, a parked vehicle on the side of the road, or lane divider. Some sideswipe accidents happen when a driver attempts to swerve to avoid a road obstacle or another vehicle that suddenly stopped ahead. A driver in this situation may reflexively swerve into another vehicle or obstacle while attempting to avoid the first obstacle or hazard.
“Blind spots” also factor into many sideswipe accidents. Every driver should know his or her vehicle’s blind spots, or the areas around the vehicle that are most difficult for the driver to see without turning his or her head while the car is in motion. Typically, blind spots are behind the driver on both sides of the vehicle. Other vehicles (especially motorcyclists or bikers) may not appear in rear-view mirrors as they slip through blind spots, so drivers must pay close attention when changing lanes or making other maneuvers that risk a collision with another vehicle in a blind spot.
Filing a Lawsuit for a Sideswipe Accident
Like any other car accident, a sideswipe accident can lead to a lawsuit if it happens because of negligence. If a driver is texting behind the wheel, driving under the influence of alcohol, or simply not paying attention to his or her surroundings, the risk of a sideswipe or any other type of accident dramatically increases. Injured drivers may be able to secure some compensation through insurance claims, but a personal injury lawsuit against a negligent driver will likely yield much more compensation.
A plaintiff in any personal injury case must prove the defendant’s negligence to succeed. Proving negligence requires establishing four elements of negligence in court:
- The plaintiff must show the court that the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care in the given situation.
- Next, the plaintiff must show the court how the defendant violated his or her duty of care.
- The plaintiff must clearly show the extent of the damages caused by the defendant’s negligence.
- The plaintiff must provide proof that his or her damages resulted from the defendant’s negligence and not some other cause.
Getting Help For Your Texas Sideswipe Accident Claim
Navigating any type of legal situation is daunting; but, securing the services of a reliable and experienced Texas personal injury attorney will greatly improve a plaintiff’s chances of success. The Law Firm of Aaron A. Herbert, P.C. has extensive experience handling all types of personal injury cases and other civil actions, so contact our team today to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys. When you meet with a member of our team, we’ll discuss your case so you know what type of compensation to expect from a lawsuit.