Each year, millions of victims suffer severe, life-altering injuries and tragic fatalities in accidents on the road. The roads in Western New York are dangerous enough without even considering reckless drivers. Reckless driving poses a substantial risk to the motorist, occupants of other vehicles, pedestrians, and everyone else on the road. Unfortunately, many drivers engage in reckless driving despite knowing that these destructive behaviors considerably heighten their risk of causing a devasting accident.
What Is Reckless Driving?
In the 1990s, the term “reckless driving” emerged to describe dangerous behaviors behind the wheel. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines reckless driving as operating a vehicle in any way that can cause danger to others on the road.
Reckless driving is a much bigger problem than most people would think. According to the American Automobile Association, nearly 75 percent of drivers displayed reckless driving behavior at least once during the previous month. Regardless of the reason behind a motorist’s recklessness, it is extremely careless, especially when it can result in others suffering devasting injuries or worse. Some examples of typical reckless driving behaviors include:
- Risky or erratic lane changes;
- Purposely disregarding other drivers’ turn signals;
- Aggressively cutting off other motorists;
- Deliberately blocking vehicles trying to pass;
- Weaving in and out of traffic;
- Rolling through stop signs;
- Intentionally running red lights;
- Repeatedly honking;
- Repeated headlight flashing;
- Speeding in rush hour traffic;
- Passing other vehicles in no-pass zones;
- Driving on the shoulder of the road; and
- Ignoring the right-of-way of others on the road.
Potential Consequences Of Reckless Driving
As mentioned above, reckless driving substantially heightens the risk of suffering a devastating accident. For example, the faster you drive, the quicker response time you will need to avoid unexpected situations. Speeding reduces your car’s stopping distance and intensifies the force of an impact. Consequently, the gravity of injuries accompanying reckless driving collisions is much more shattering when compared to other types of accidents. Some injuries that victims of reckless driving accidents commonly suffer include:
- Amputated or severed limbs;
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs);
- Brutal neck and spinal cord injuries;
- Life-long disfigurement;
- Internal organ damage;
- Crush injuries;
- Total paralysis;
- Severe emotional trauma;
- Permanent disability; and
- Wrongful death.
Research by the American Automobile Association (AAA) shows that over half of all fatal crashes involve reckless driving. For victims who are fortunate enough to survive these ravaging injuries, it often takes weeks or months to recover physically and psychologically. Let alone the high hospital bills, rehabilitation costs, and other financial damages, which place added stress on victims and their families.
The best way to avoid collisions caused by reckless driving is to obey all traffic laws and practice safe driving behaviors. You should never take unnecessary risks behind the wheel, even if it means arriving at your destination late.
Suppose you or a loved one have been impacted by another driver’s recklessness behind the wheel; you may be entitled to compensation. Please call us today for your free, no-obligation consultation and case assessment. We are available 24/7 at 716-839-3939 or by completing the online consultation form.