Negligent driving refers to when a driver fails to employ reasonable care while on the road. Such a driver is usually unaware of the inherent risk but could, nonetheless, injure a passenger, pedestrian, or other motorist or cause property damage.
Driving negligently is becoming increasingly popular in California. The Los Angeles Car Accident Attorneys with El Dabe Ritter Trial Lawyers can help you understand your rights as a victim of a negligent driver and get any compensation due to you.
What Constitutes Negligence?
A driver is considered negligent when they act irresponsibly and cause harm to other people as a result. To prove a negligent driving claim case, you have to prove that the driver was at fault. Common causes of negligent driving include:
- Operating a car under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Driving while texting, calling, or responding to emails
- Daydreaming, fatigue, or falling asleep
- Grooming or applying makeup
- Passenger or pet distractions
- Changing the radio
There are numerous other causes of negligent driving. Overall, an act of negligence is any action that takes a driver’s attention away from the road.
Accident Reports Are an Essential Component of Your Claim
It is true that an accident report forms a critical part of your injury claim, no matter how major or minor the fall itself might have been. The best way to do this is to do it as soon after the fall as possible. This is when the details are freshest in your mind, and it is when any possible witness and bystanders are around to provide their input into the report as well. That being said, there are obvious, mitigating circumstances the might prevent you from even being able to think about completing an accident report, not to mention actually doing it.
If you are seriously injured, your first obligation is to your self. The accident report will sort itself out later. Get yourself the medical attention that you need, or ask someone nearby to arrange to have assistance come to the scene of the accident. There are some things that you can do if you are able to talk that will help your case later. You can record your notes about the accident to use when you complete the accident report later. You can also ask someone to begin the process for you. These are all alternatives, but again it is important to note that the law does not stipulate that you must complete the accident report immediately after a fall. Do not stress over this detail if you are even remotely injured.
Common Forms of Negligent Driving
The causes of negligent driving can culminate in different actions. These actions are often traffic violations and create an unconducive environment for other drivers and road users. They can also lead to a driver facing legal action, losing their license, paying a hefty fine, or even facing jail time.
Typical forms of negligent driving include:
- Improper lane changing
- Aggressive driving
- Failure to signal properly
- Driving with hazard lights on
- Failure to yield
- Following too closely
- Running a red light
- Rolling stops
These actions can often lead to collisions and injuries. To avoid them, drivers are advised to remain attentive on the road and avoid driving when too tired or ill.
Negligent Driving Penalties
This offense has a lighter penalty than driving under the influence (DUI). Nonetheless, it can have significant repercussions, such as:
- Jail time of up to 90 days
- A fine of up to $1000
- Loss of work permit
- Alcohol or drug treatment
- Probation time of up to two years
- Criminal record
Injuries Caused by Negligent Drivers
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 3 in every 10 accidents are caused by negligent or reckless driving. Most of these accidents often result in serious injuries. This may be due to reduced response time caused by a driver being inattentive.
Negligent drivers can harm themselves just as much as they can hurt others. Common injuries caused by negligent drivers include:
- Head and brain damage
- Airbag or seatbelt injuries
- Broken or fractured bones
- Joint or spinal cord injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Neck injuries
These injuries can range from mild to severe and could have significant impacts on the lives of all those involved.
The Importance of an Accident Report
One might wonder what the importance of an accident report even is if it does not have to fill out right away. While that is a great question, the importance of this one document simply cannot be discounted. The judicial system may understand the need for a daly in filing an accident report if the injuries from the fall are severe, but they will not be so understanding if it is obvious that person that suffered the fall could have easily completed the accident report not long after the incident.
When you go to file an accident report, modern technology is certainly an asset. You will want to compile as many photos and video footage as you can. In fact, this is a way to get others around you involved if you are unable to help yourself due to injury. You can ask bystanders to at least capture some pictures and even videotape the scene if they have a smartphone handy. This will go a long way towards helping your case in the end.
Contact Our Los Angeles Car Accident Attorneys
At El Dabe Ritter Trial Lawyers, we are familiar with the repercussions of negligent driving on accident victims. We want to help you get the compensation you deserve for your injuries, losses, and damages. We will walk you through the legislative process and handle matters on your behalf as you recover.
If you, someone close to you, or someone you love, suffers injuries caused by a negligent driver, don’t hesitate to contact us to schedule a free consultation with our top Los Angeles Car Accident Attorneys at El Dabe Ritter Trial Lawyers.