What Is Considered a T-Bone Car Accident?
March 29, 2022 | Car Accidents
T-bone car accidents are one of many types of traffic collisions. They often happen due to distracted drivers or those who run red lights. If a negligent driver leaves you injured in a T-bone accident, you need the professional legal counsel of an experienced car accident attorney in your corner.
What’s a T-Bone Car Crash?
T-bone car crashes happen when another driver barrels into you at a right 90-degree angle. Called T-bone accidents because one car drives into the side of another, these crashes form the shape of a T. Generally, the motorist in the vehicle that does the striking is at fault, but not always. T-bone car crashes typically happen at intersections, but they can occur whenever vehicles enter traffic from a right angle, such as in parking lots and driveways.
Government procedures include T-bone accidents with angle collisions in government statistics. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), these angle collisions are the deadliest accidents, leading to about 7,500 fatalities in one recent year alone. This type of accident accounts for 44.9 percent of all collisions between two vehicles.
T-bone accidents, also called broadside accidents, typically result when one driver fails to yield the right-of-way as required. However, illegal and unsafe left turns are often the cause when the struck driver is at fault. Running red lights or jumping green lights, on the other hand, are often the cause when the driver who does the striking is at fault. However, every T-bone accident is unique, and the court must determine fault accordingly. Distraction often plays a critical role in these very dangerous accidents.
Distracted drivers often fail to see-or pay adequate attention to-what is going on around them, leading to T-bone accidents. Distractions refer to anything that occupies a driver’s thoughts, hands, or sight-other than proceeding safely. Texting is an activity that melds each of these forms of distraction, prompting the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to name it the most alarming distraction.
When motorists aren’t paying attention to what they should be paying attention to, barreling into oncoming traffic becomes that much more likely and sets the stage for T-bone accidents.
It takes about five seconds on average to read or draft a text, and when the texting driver is traveling at highway speeds, this means driving about the length of a football field with one’s eyes off the road. It’s difficult to imagine a more dangerous scenario.
Other Forms of Driver Negligence
While distraction is closely associated with T-bone accidents, any driver negligence will do.
Drivers impaired by alcohol are known for making impulsive driving moves, which increases the risk of T-bone accidents. Drunk drivers, however, are dangerous for a wide range of reasons, including physical, cognitive, and sensory impairments-coupled with a loss of impulse control and poor judgment.
The impairments caused by exhaustion can be similar to those caused by alcohol, including cloudy thinking. This condition leaves drowsy drivers more susceptible to causing T-bone accidents. NHTSA reports that drowsy drivers caused 697 deaths in 2019, and they expect this number to be low due to difficulty in identifying exhaustion in motorists (other than by self-reporting).
#3. Excess Speed
The faster a driver is traveling, the less time they allow for making safe choices in response to any dangers encountered ahead. Often split-second decisions lead to T-bone accidents, and motorists who speed ensure that they need to make split-second decisions more frequently. Speeding is about more than exceeding the speed limit, set to help protect the safety of everyone on our roadways.
When motorists fail to adjust their speed for bad weather, a poorly maintained road, or anything else, they increase the risk of accidents-including T-bone accidents. Speeding motorists increase the risk that they will cause accidents and increase the risk that the accidents will prove deadly.
Aggressive drivers like to push the envelope, meaning they are willing to take daring risks, and T-bone accidents can result. Aggressive drivers tend to ignore traffic signs, lights, and signals, which makes them more likely to roll through stop signs and blast through red lights (the perfect setup for T-bone accidents).
Additional Risks Involved
T-bone accidents are even more dangerous than many other accidents for two primary reasons – there is no crumple zone on the side of a car, and a T-bone might push your vehicle into traffic.
Lack of a Crumple Zone
When someone hits a car from the front, the hood acts as a protective crumple zone, and when struck from behind, the trunk does the same. However, when someone hits a car from the side, there is no buffer, and whoever is on that side is likely to absorb more of the direct impact, which is exceptionally dangerous. Additionally, far fewer vehicles have side-curtain airbags than have front airbags.
Pushed into Traffic
The initial T-bone accident is hazardous, but this particular brand of accident tends to push the struck vehicle into the next lane of traffic, putting the hit vehicle’s occupants-and the traffic in the other lane-at even greater risk. T-bone accidents make our roadways perilous places.
Your T-Bone Accident Claim
To regain your health and reach your most complete recovery, you’ll need to recover fully for the losses (known as legal damages) you experience in a T-bone accident.
In addition to property damage to your car, your covered losses can include:
- Medical Bills – Your medical costs may start with emergency services and include surgery, hospital care, and beyond. While you can expect your medical expenses to be exceptionally high, they will be even more so if your injuries prove serious, lead to complications, or evolve into secondary healthcare concerns.
- Lost Pay – There is no getting around the fact that, while you are recovering, you’re likely to miss work, which tends to mean a decrease in pay. This loss of income coupled with your mounting medical expenses can prove financially devastating, and if your earning potential is affected, it makes the matter that much more difficult.
- Pain and Suffering – Being injured in a T-bone accident caused by someone else’s negligence can be as emotionally painful as it is physically. This loss category is more challenging to attach a price to, but that does not make it less important in terms of your car accident claim.
Reach out to an Experienced Car Accident Attorney Today
If another driver’s negligence leaves you injured in a T-bone accident, you want help from a car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Many drivers and insurance companies fight liability for T-bone crashes and point fingers at injured victims. Don’t let this happen to you – seek legal representation you can trust.
Your lawyer will handle your claim, from gathering evidence to negotiating with insurance companies. If the insurance company makes a settlement offer, your attorney can advise you whether it is adequate or whether to hold out for more. A skilled negotiator can provide additional evidence to insurers to fight for the full amount you deserve. T-bone accidents are stressful, but your car accident lawyer can relieve some of your stress afterward.