Road rage. It happens on streets all across America, often causing serious accidents. If you’re involved in a road rage related accident, you may need a Houston auto accident attorney to help with your case. In this article, we’ll go over some facts about road rage, how it may affect your accident case, and what to do if you find yourself dealing with a road rage driver.
Victim of a Road Range Accident? Consider Contacting a Houston Auto Accident Attorney
Unfortunately, road rage is incredibly common. In fact, some surveys show that 82% of surveyed drivers admit to road rage in the past year. Most people can understand the frustration that one might experience when someone cuts you off or is driving slower than the speed limit. However, acting on this frustration can lead to accidents that cause injury or even death.
If you were a victim of a car accident caused by a driver with road rage, you may need compensation to cover your accident related expenses. For instance, you might have medical bills, lost wages, and auto repair bills you need to pay. Seeking compensation from an at-fault driver or their insurance can be a complex process, which is why many people hire a Houston auto accident attorney for help. Attorneys offer legal knowledge and experience to help with everything from filing the paperwork correctly to negotiating a settlement amount.
What is Road Rage? How Does it Affect My Houston Auto Personal Injury Case?
Road rage, sometimes known as aggressive driving, is a serious issue on Houston roads. Road rage is essentially where drivers purposefully drive aggressively against another driver. For instance, some common road rage actions include:
- Intentionally tailgating
- Cutting off other cars
- “Brake checking” other cars
- Running cars off the road
- Blocking cars from passing or changing lanes
- Passing illegally
- Yelling/cursing at other drivers
- Ramming other cars on purpose
- Physical assault
Unfortunately, road rage is incredibly common and is on the rise according to the Texas Division of Insurance. Many road rage incidents end in car accidents ranging in severity. Many people are injured each year in road rage related car accidents. These cases can be complicated and road rage can affect your case, so you should talk to your Houston auto accident attorney about the specifics of your case.
Evidence of Road Rage May Help Your Houston Auto Accident Attorney Make Your Case
If the at-fault driver engaged in behaviors that suggest road rage, then it may help your case in some ways. Road rage often comes with reckless driving behaviors, which can help show fault for your case. However, it’s important to get evidence of their aggressive driving behaviors. Your Houston auto personal injury can help you gather evidence through many ways. For instance, we can talk to witnesses, ask for security footage from nearby businesses or traffic cameras, and also look for any mention of aggressive driving in the police report.
With evidence in hand, then your attorney can use it to argue your case for you. Generally, it’s important to prove the other driver’s fault to receive compensation. Often, compensation may be higher if you can argue that the driver was intentionally negligent. This can show the insurance company that you have a strong case and encourage the adjuster to offer a fair settlement rather than go to court. If you choose to file a lawsuit, you may be able to ask for punitive damages for intentional reckless driving. Your Houston auto accident attorney offers experience to help you with this process.
Can My Houston Auto Accident Attorney File an Insurance Claim for Road Rage Related Car Accidents?
We’ve mentioned that you might be able to file a claim against the other driver’s insurance for your accident. However, it’s important to keep in mind this may not always be an option. According to the Insurance Information Institute, many auto insurance policies don’t cover accidents due to road rage or aggressive driving. If the other driver’s insurance company has this exemption in the policy, they may not pay for your injuries and damages after the car accident.
In these cases, sometimes the only option available to you is to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. If this happens, your Houston auto accident attorney can help you explore your options and can also walk you through the process. If you file a lawsuit, your attorney can also represent you in court for your case.
What Does Houston Traffic Accident Law Say About Road Rage?
Most states and cities have laws prohibiting aggressive driving. Houston traffic accident law typically treats road rage and aggressive driving as reckless driving. Reckless driving is loosely defined as driving in a way that knowingly endangers others or is likely to cause damage or injury. Reckless drivers can face fines or even jail time through criminal charges. However, your car accident case is generally considered a civil matter, which is separate from the criminal case. Therefore, you still will still likely need to work with your Houston auto personal injury lawyer to help prove your case and seek compensation, either through an insurance claim, out-of-court settlement, or a lawsuit.
What to Do When Faced with a Road Rage Situation
Now, you might be wondering if there’s anything you can do to help reduce tension during a road rage event. If another driver is acting aggressively, there are some things you can do to try to defuse the situation. While you’re not at fault for their anger, here are some tips that may help you stay safe if another driver is exhibiting signs of road rage.
- Make Space: Try to safely create some space between you and the other driver. This might include changing lanes or even sometimes turning and taking a different route to avoid issues.
- Don’t Engage: Try to avoid making eye contact or responding to any actions or words from the other driver.
- Report the Driver: If possible, get a description of the vehicle and a license plate number. You can call 311 to report aggressive drivers to the police’s non-emergency line.
- Call 911 When Threatened: If the other driver threatens you, call the police for assistance.
- Drive Somewhere Safe: If an aggressive driver is following you, drive to the nearest police station or another safe place.
Taking these steps may help you stay safe and avoid an accident or confrontation. However, keep in mind that sometimes there may not be much you can do to de-escalate the situation.
DeSimone Law Office – Your Trusted Houston Auto Accident Attorney
If you were injured in a road rage related accident, consider hiring an experienced Houston auto accident attorney for your case. Our team at DeSimone has helped settle thousands of car accident cases. We are here to help you seek compensation for your injuries and damages. Whether you need help negotiating with the insurance company or need to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver, our attorneys advocate for your rights as a car crash victim. If we don’t help you recover damages for your case, you owe us nothing. Contact us today for a free case evaluation with our attorneys.