A sideswipe accident usually happens between two vehicles when the right side of one brushes the left side when both vehicles are driving in the same direction. In addition, a sideswipe accident will happen when one of the drivers does not maintain the lane or tries to change lanes when it is unsafe. 

Sideswipe accident victims often suffer severe car damage. In cases where injuries are sustained, victims are left with long or short-lasting injuries to deal with; it all depends on the intensity of the accident.

Sideswipe accidents can be very hazardous, especially if these vehicles are moving at a very high speed, causing the effect to sometimes spread to other vehicles on other lanes because the first collision can cause further collisions, causing more damage. 

Sideswipe accidents can happen anywhere. But, if you are in Tampa, here is what you should know about a sideswipe accident.  

Who is to Blame for a Sideswipe Accident?

The driver who fails to maintain his lane is at fault in a typical sideswipe accident. However, this may not always be the case; there have been cases where other drivers or subsequent road users have done something to cause the driver to change his lane abruptly. No case of a side swap accident is caused without a mistake from one of the drivers or road users. It is important to know that when you’re involved in a side swap caused by another driver in the next lane, before moving your vehicle, take a picture; this would help strengthen your case and easily determine that the accident that occurred was not a fault from you.

Also, if you have an eyewitness, that’s a massive plus for you.

Common Causes of Sideswipe Accident

Knowing the causes of these accidents will be of great help as we won’t only know how to avoid them, but we will no longer be oblivious to what to do when they occur. The majority of the causes of These accidents are not far-fetched and can be easily pointed out, some being;

  • Driver distraction and careless driving: Distracted driving is a temporary loss of concentration behind the steering wheel. Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of motor accidents, specifically taxi accidents, in the United States. Common examples of distracted driving are texting, distraction by another person or passenger, a wandering mind, rubbernecking, eating, drinking, and changing the car settings while driving.
  • Fatigue driving: Overworking and lack of sleep are leading causes of fatigue. A driver should not get behind in a state of fatigue. Get enough sleep, and rest after strenuous work hours. If you must get somewhere and you’re overworked, it is advisable to get a taxi instead to ensure that you’re far from the steering and get enough rest you deserve. A crash caused by fatigue driving can lead to damages awarded to you.
  • Poor vision: Poor vision can result from a medical condition or bad weather conditions that hinder you from seeing the road.
  • Aggressive driving: High-speed driving does more harm than it does good. Aggression behind the steering wheel happens, and it is a leading cause of taxi accidents. 
  • Driving under the Influence: DUI is driving under the influence. Influence can be an influence of alcohol or a controlled substance like a hard drug. When your driver drives under the influence, he is putting you, other road users, and himself in great danger. It is very okay to report an intoxicated driver when you see one. Do not drink and drive and do not drive and drink.
  • Icy and wet roads: Ice and water caused by snow and rainfall can cause the road to be slippery. This can pose a challenge to drivers.

Common injuries from a sideswipe accident

Injuries from a sideswipe accident will depend on the seriousness of the injury. For example, the impact’s severity, the vehicle’s speed, and the vehicle’s size if it was a truck or a smaller vehicle. The damage will be particularly severe if the vehicle that caused the impact is heavy and the vehicle that received the impact is smaller. This will lead to serious injuries for all passengers of the vehicle, particularly for the person who was closest to the impact. Injuries can arise from a sideswipe accident. The severity will depend on how bad the crash was.

  • Sprain:  Sprain is a tear in ligaments; when ligaments are overstretched, they can tear. Ligaments hold bones together to prevent excessive movement of the bones.
  • Strain: A strain is caused due to an overstretching of the tendons that hold muscles together.
  • Fracture: A fracture can be severe or less severe, e.g., severe in a case where a victim can suffer a complete fracture which is a total break in the bone. The pains are usually very severe when some victims pass out and less severe when the accident victim suffers a crack. Bones can crack or break when external forces pressure them.
  • Seatbelt injuries: injuries caused by forceful movement of seatbelts.

Sideswaps could cause even severer auto damages and more serious injuries like;

  • Spinal cord injuries: spinal cord injuries could lead to paralysis and loss of mobility, making a victim forever dependent on support from family and friends.
  • Whiplash: In car accidents, the neck bone can move out of place due to forwarding and backward jerking.
  • Traumatic Brain Injuries: Brain injuries like loss of memory, brain dysfunction, and amnesia. Motor accidents cause 20 percent of brain injuries.
  • Broken bones and ribs
  • Damaged internal organs 
  • First, second, and third-degree burns

 What you can do to avoid a possible sideswipe accident

  • You want to avoid driving recklessly and aggressively
  • Be wary of bigger vehicles or trucks
  • You also want to watch closely and be observant
  • Do not drive when tired, drowsy, or drunk
  • Check blind spots carefully

An injury from an accident can be difficult. That is why compensation is about the least relief the party at fault, or their insurance company can give to a crash victim or their loved one where the crash resulted in death. 

 What steps should you take after a sideswipe accident?

  1. When you suffer a personal injury, or your loved one has suffered from a personal injury, you should notify the local police station in Tampa. Make an official report of what happened, and the injuries suffered.
  2. Gather evidence that can help you. Pictures and videos can go a long way in helping your case.
  3. Seek medical attention.
  4. Keep records of medical bills and expenses. Keeping records can help you in the fight to claim your financial relief.

Where are both drivers responsible?

In an automobile accident, both parties could be at fault. How insurance adjusters decide liability is governed by the state’s laws where the collision happened. In some areas, neither party in a collision that was partially their fault is entitled to reimbursement from the at-fault driver and their insurance company. In some places, both parties can demand financial compensation from the other, or they can only do so if one side is not more at fault than the other.

If a shared-fault accident occurs, having an auto accident lawyer on your side may assist them in assessing your case and advise you on how to proceed. Also, your own insurance company, the insurance of the other driver, or both may be able to compensate you.

Call us today to speak with a sideswipe accident lawyer.

If you have gotten into a sideswipe accident and wish to pursue your compensation in Tampa, contact the Coleman Law Group for help and expertise!

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