Reckless Driving Actions Causing New York Accidents
Have you been involved in a traffic accident caused by a reckless driver in New York? Did the reckless driver cause you or someone you love serious harm? If so, you may be eligible to seek compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, damage to your vehicle, and more. An experienced car accident lawyer can help you hold the at-fault driver accountable for his or her unsafe driving.
Contact the New York car accident – reckless driving injury attorneys of Cantor, Wolff, Nicastro & Hall LLC today by calling (716) 995-4318 or filling out our online contact form for a free, confidential case review. If you have a car accident injury claim, we are ready to stand up and fight for you.
Reckless Driving in New York
The State of New York has a broad definition of reckless driving. Under New York Vehicle & Traffic Law Sec. 1212, a person is considered to be driving recklessly when the individual:
- Drives in a manner that interferes with everyone else’s proper use of public roads
- Drives in a manner that endangers other public road users
Because reckless driving is a crime in New York, a driver who is convicted could face penalties including points on their driving record, fines, and even jail time.
In addition to facing criminal charges, a reckless driver who injures others in a collision may have civil liability. Those who were injured in the reckless driving crash may be entitled to seek compensation from the reckless driver’s insurance to cover the medical bills and related losses.
What Actions Qualify as Reckless Driving?
Motorists are expected to follow the rules of the road, including obeying the speed limit, yielding the right of way, signaling lane changes, and remaining alert for changes in traffic conditions. Motorists have a legal duty to drive safely to avoid endangering others on New York roads.
When a driver fails to act responsibly and instead drives recklessly, the driver may be financially liable for any injuries and property damage the driver causes.
Reckless driving is a serious criminal offense in NY Vehicle and Traffic Law.
The following violations may involve reckless behavior on the part of the driver:
- Drunk driving – Driving under the influence of alcohol can negatively affect a driver’s vision, the judgment of hazardous situations, and reaction time. An impaired driver endangers everyone sharing the road.
- Drugged driving –Drugged drivers may behave recklessly due to drowsiness, the impaired judgment of time and space, and decreased coordination.
- Excessive speed – Exceeding the posted speed limits or driving too fast for traffic or weather conditions can cause an accident. Driving more than 30 miles per hour above the speed limit is often classified as reckless. Driving at high speed increases the risk of serious injury or fatal injuries in a collision and can lead to a reckless driving charge.
- Tailgating – Following too closely behind other drivers on the road can be dangerous. A driver may not have enough room to slow or stop if the vehicle in front brakes unexpectedly.
- Running red lights or stop signs – Failing to come to a full stop at a red light or stop sign can cause an intersection accident. Drivers that run red lights or stop signs in New York may be charged with reckless driving. If you were injured in an accident caused by a driver who ran a red light or stop signs, you may have a right to demand compensation from the at-fault driver.
How To Prove Reckless Driving in New York
An important aspect of seeking compensation after a severe injury accident is having evidence to show that the other driver was negligent. Reckless driving constitutes negligence. To prove that the other driver caused your injuries as a result of reckless or negligent conduct, your reckless driving injury attorney will seek to gather much evidence.
Commonly Gathered Evidence to Prove Someone’s Negligence
- An official police accident report
- Traffic violations, arrest records, or criminal charges brought against the driver
- Eyewitness statements, including your own passengers and anyone else who witnessed the accident
- Expert witness statements, usually from accident reconstruction professionals
- Video evidence from security cameras, intersection cameras, and vehicle dash-cams
- Photo evidence of the crash scene, including the position of the vehicles, vehicle damage, tire skid marks, and more
- The medical records about your injuries
Injuries Caused by Reckless Drivers in New York
Reckless driving isn’t just being distracted behind the wheel. A reckless driver is unreasonably putting himself or herself and others on the road in harm’s way. This disregard for safety can lead to severe or fatal injury accidents.
Some of the Common Injuries Caused by Reckless Drivers
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
- Back, spine, or spinal cord injuries
- Internal organ injuries
- Severe burns
- Fractured or broken bones
- Soft-tissue injuries
- Scarring and disfigurement
Along with physical injuries, accident reckless driving crash victims often suffer emotionally as well. The pain from injuries and associated medical treatment, post-traumatic stress from the reckless driving crash, and emotional anguish are types of harm caused by the reckless driver that may be compensable as part of a personal injury claim.
In worst-case scenarios, those involved in a collision with a reckless driver might not survive their injuries. When someone dies due to a motorist’s reckless behavior behind the wheel, the surviving family members may be entitled to file a wrongful death lawsuit. This type of legal action is designed to recover funeral and burial expenses, final medical bills, loss of financial support, and more for the immediate family of the victim.
Compensation for a Reckless Driving Accident
A serious injury accident can put a tremendous financial strain on the lives of the victims. The victims may have a right to take legal action against the person who caused the crash. Understandably, many accident victims feel that the crash should never have happened and they should not have to bear the costs of someone else’s reckless actions.
Holding a reckless driver accountable for the harm the driver has caused is possible through a personal injury claim.
Reckless Driving Victims can seek the following compensations:
- Medical bills (both current and future expenses)
- Lost earnings due to time missed from work
- Loss of future earnings if the crash has left you disabled
- Travel expenses for treatment
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Pain, suffering, and post-traumatic stress
- Vehicle rental and repairs or replacement of your own vehicle
To maximize your financial recovery after a crash, it is best to hire an experienced Buffalo reckless driving, personal injury attorney.
What Can Reckless Driving Injury Attorney Do?
- Investigate the crash
- Identify the responsible party or parties
- Collect evidence
- Build a persuasive case utilizing evidence, crash reconstruction experts, your medical expenses, and other bills
- Negotiate with the at-fault party’s insurance company for a fair settlement
- File a lawsuit and fight for compensation in court, if necessary
Keep in mind that not every attorney has the same experience. Not all lawyers handle personal injury claims or have a track record of successful settlements and verdicts. Because you only have one shot at bringing an injury claim and seeking fair compensation, be sure to select a lawyer with specific experience handling car accident cases.
Timeline for Filing a Personal Injury Claim In New York
All states have a time limit for filing personal injury lawsuits, known as the statute of limitations. Anyone who wishes to file a lawsuit to seek damages in court must do so within the time limit.
In New York, car accident victims have three years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit. Because it takes time to build a strong case and negotiate a settlement, it’s a good idea to hire a lawyer as soon as possible.
Get Help from a Reckless Driving Attorney in New York
Cantor, Wolff, Nicastro & Hall LLC is a full-service law firm with experience handling all types of New York accident claims. We understand that recovering from a serious accident can be challenging, especially if you are unable to work and experiencing financial stress.
Our Buffalo car accident lawyers will do everything we can to resolve your car accident injury claim so you can focus on your health. Our New York reckless driving attorneys will deal with the insurance companies, communicate with other parties on your behalf, and conduct a thorough investigation of your case.
We charge no up-front costs to get started on your case. Our initial consultations are completely free of charge. Call us today at (716) 995-4318 or contact us online to learn more.