Several types of motor vehicle accidents occur in Maryland. Sideswipe accidents are one of these. Each unique crash type has its consequences on the victims. For example, it can affect their financial losses and the extent of their injuries. In addition, the accident often offers a pointer to who’s liable for the collision. Maryland car accident lawyers will tell you that the case isn’t different for sideswipe crashes.
However, the presumption on the liability of sideswipe accidents isn’t always correct. Instead, it’s rebuttable with solid evidence. That’s why hiring a Maryland car accident attorney is crucial. Any experienced lawyer will know how to determine responsibility in your car crash. They can then fight to get you the maximum compensation.
What Causes Sideswipe Accidents?
Sideswipe accidents occur when vehicles collide with the sides of other cars. They’re similar to T-bone accidents. T-bone collisions happen when the front of a car hits the side of another vehicle. This crash then forms the letter “T.” Notably, the difference is that sideswipe accidents mustn’t involve a vehicle’s front.
Instead, both cars can collide with their sides. Furthermore, several factors can cause sideswipe accidents. Some of them include:
Failure to Yield
Some drivers fail to yield to oncoming traffic when merging into another lane. If this happens, a sideswipe accident is almost inevitable. Drivers often fail to yield because of distractions or ignoring blind spots.
Reckless driving is a culprit in multiple accident types. This is because a reckless danger is a danger waiting to happen. Such danger can thus manifest as sideswipe collisions.
Driving Under the Influence of Drugs and Alcohol
Drugs and alcohol also adversely affect a driver’s sense of judgment. Therefore, they can crash into the sides of other vehicles on the road.
Suppose a driver is over-speeding and they suddenly need to avoid an object. If they swerve and there’s a car beside them, they can sideswipe that other driver. This is only one of the ways speeding can cause sideswipe accidents.
Below are other possible causes of Maryland sideswipe collisions:
- Drowsy or fatigued driving
- Driver inattentiveness
Common Sideswipe Accident Injuries
Sideswipe accidents can result in different injuries. These could range from minor to devastating wounds. Notably, several factors affect the severity of sideswipe accident injuries. These include the size of the vehicles and their speed. In certain circumstances, sideswipe collision victims may even die.
Some sideswipe accident injuries in Maryland include:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Other head injuries
- Internal organ injuries
- Spinal cord damage
- Neck, shoulder, and back injuries
- Bone fractures
- Burns, cuts, and bruises
- Knee injuries
So, after a sideswipe crash, it’ll be best to visit the nearest physician. This way, you can quickly start treating your wounds. Furthermore, your medical records can easily link your injuries to the accident.
Who Is Liable in a Sideswipe Accident?
Sideswipe accident victims often assume the sideswiping driver is the at-fault party. They’re often right; however, this isn’t always the case. Instead, other parties can share liability in a sideswipe collision. These would include:
- The employer of the at-fault driver
- The vehicle manufacturer, if a defective part caused the collision
- Government agencies, if bad roads caused the accident
If you can prove that any of these parties owed you a duty of care they breached, they’ll have to pay you compensation.
Can the Sideswiped Driver Be Responsible?
In some rare cases, a sideswiped driver contributed to the accident. For example, suppose this driver waved, signaling that the other driver could overtake. If they moved just as this other driver followed their cue, then they can be wholly responsible for a resulting collision.
The sideswiped driver can also be partly responsible if their actions contributed to the sideswipe. When this happens, Maryland’s contributory negligence rule kicks in. This principle calculates the plaintiff’s percentage of fault in the accident. Then, even if this is just 1%, they lose their right to compensation.
Maryland is one of four American states that still apply this principle. The other driver can exploit this unfair rule to avoid paying damages. Therefore, hiring a Maryland car accident lawyer is crucial. An attorney can ensure that the other party doesn’t wrongfully shift liability.
Hire the Best Maryland Car Accident Lawyers Today!
Have you escaped a Maryland sideswipe accident? Did you suffer bodily injuries and property damage? If you did, then you may be eligible for compensation. First, however, you’ll need the best Maryland car accident lawyers.
At Pinder Plotkin, LLC, we have all the legal experience and skills you need. This includes combined decades of winning millions of dollars for our clients. Therefore, it’ll be best to hire our legal services today. You can start by calling us for a FREE consultation.