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What factors determine who is at fault in a Car Accident?

When you are involved in a car accident, one of the most important things to do is to determine who is at fault. If you have sustained injuries and damage to your vehicle, you must know exactly who was to blame so that you can properly make a claim to your auto insurance company or start a personal injury lawsuit. There are certain situations that result in a car accident occurring that can be considered when determining who is at fault.

Driver Negligence

Negligence is the biggest reason why car accidents happen, so it’s important to determine who was negligent behind the wheel. There are a number of ways a driver can be considered negligent, with some reasons being less obvious than others. For example, if someone was intoxicated while driving, it is a clear-cut case of the individual being negligent. On the other hand, if someone had taken some type of prescription medication and became drowsy while driving, it could be a slightly gray area.

Most situations of driver negligence involve a person becoming distracted and not paying enough attention to the road. Situations such as texting or being on a phone call, talking to passengers or children in the backseat, adjusting the stereo, looking at a map and even eating or drinking are only a few ways that a driver can become distracted. Distracted driving counts as negligence behind the wheel and it frequently indicates fault for a car accident.

Reckless Driving

Reckless driving involves driving without regard for the safety of anyone on the road regardless of the consequences. There are a number of things that can constitute reckless driving, such as speeding, racing with another vehicle, weaving erratically in and out of lanes and disregarding traffic signs and traffic lights. A person who is driving recklessly can easily cause a car accident and would just as easily be found at fault.

Poor Road Conditions

Poor road conditions can also lead to a car accident. The following include examples of poor road conditions:

  • Narrow roads
  • Debris from construction on the road
  • Potholes or sinkholes
  • Cracks or breaks in the road
  • Lanes that are uneven, such as when one has been repaved but the other has not
  • Unclear or confusing road signs
  • An insufficient shoulder on the road
  • Construction taking place on the road
  • Flagman giving poor instructions

In a situation where a car accident results from poor road conditions, it may be possible to have a claim not just against another driver but against a governmental agency or organization in charge of those road conditions. In some cases, an accident may solely be the fault of the governmental agency.

No Doubt Liability

Certain types of car accidents are almost always the fault of one driver over the other. Rear-end collisions are nearly always the fault of the driver from behind because they didn’t give enough space while following or braked too late. Left-turn accidents are almost always the fault of the driver who is making a left turn while the other is traveling straight. There are exceptions, however, namely if the car making the left turn went through a red light, was traveling over the speed limit or ended up slowing down unexpectedly.

If any of these situations were in place when you got into an accident, you have a valid reason to speak with an attorney at the Cartwright Law Firm. Contact the Cartwright Law Firm at your earliest convenience to discuss your case. We have defended hundreds of clients following their car accidents, and, we will work with you to strive for the best possible outcome in your situation.

For more information on our San Francisco personal injury attorney, please visit our site.

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