Negligence may be grounds for legal liability in a car accident. The elements of negligence are the duty of care, breach of duty, causation of an accident and damages. As you think about negligence, it can be helpful to review examples. Remember that every case is different. However, here are some examples of negligence from our Las Vegas car accident lawyers.
What Are Some Examples of Car Accident Negligence?
Some examples of car accident negligence include:
1. Following Too Closely
Two drivers are both traveling eastbound on the highway. The first vehicle is in the right-hand lane, going the speed limit. The second driver is right behind. Even though they’re traveling at 55 miles per hour, the second driver is only 10 feet behind the first driver.
Suddenly, a deer runs into the road. The first driver is able to apply their brakes quickly and stop without hitting the deer. However, the second driver rear-ends the first driver. The second driver acted negligently by following too closely to the vehicle in front of them. In some jurisdictions, following too closely is also called tailgating or failing to stop in the assured, clear distance ahead.
2. Bad Weather
There is heavy rain making the roads slick. Visibility is reduced. However, a driver is going the speed limit anyway. They can’t see the vehicle in front of them before it’s too late. As a result, they rear-end the car in front. Even though the weather itself is an act of God, drivers have a responsibility to take the weather into account. The driver who didn’t account for the rain and slow down is negligent.
3. Drunk Driving/DUI
Drunk driving is an example of negligence. Drivers know that it’s not safe to get behind the wheel while intoxicated. The duty of care that one driver owes to another prohibits operating a motor vehicle over the legal limit or while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. A driver who hurts someone or damages property because they are intoxicated is negligent.
4. Road Rage
A driver who commits road rage is negligent. In fact, road rage may be more serious than negligence. It may be recklessness or intentional misconduct. Even if a driver offends another driver on the road, the one who is slighted cannot retaliate. Any driver who takes action that is motivated by road rage is at least responsible for negligence, if not more serious misconduct.
5. Running a Light
Two drivers approach an intersection. The light is turning red, but the driver thinks they can make it through anyway. They proceed through the intersection on a red light. At the same time, the driver with a green arrow is turning left. The two cars collide. Negligence occurs when a driver fails to observe a traffic signal like a red light or a stop sign.
6. Driving Tired
A driver has been up for the last 24 hours. They just want to get home. However, they’re in no condition to drive. They can’t stay awake while on the road. As they drift in and out of sleep, they cross the centerline and collide with an oncoming car. The driver who chooses to drive while they are too tired or exhausted to focus on their driving is guilty of negligence.
7. Going Too Fast Around a Corner
Going too fast around a corner is an example of negligence. A driver has to take the conditions of the road into account while they drive. That means accounting for the curves and corners on the route. If a driver slides off the roads or into oncoming traffic because they’re going too fast around a corner, they may be liable to victims for damages.
8. Texting While Driving
A driver wants to send a text. They take their eyes off the road for three seconds. Unfortunately, that three seconds is long enough to cause a car accident. Texting while driving can cause a driver to divert their attention from the task at hand. When that happens, the driver is responsible for negligence.
9. Neglecting Maintenance
A driver has a responsibility to keep their vehicle in working condition. When there are problems with a car, the driver has an obligation to get the issues addressed. Of course, a driver may not always know about unexpected issues. However, if an accident occurs, a driver can be responsible for neglecting routine maintenance or failing to address problems that arise.
10. Known Medical Issue
When a driver suffers a stroke, his doctor tells them to give up driving. The doctor warns the person that there is too much risk to continue to operate a motor vehicle. However, the person doesn’t listen. He has another medical event and a car accident results. The driver acted negligently by ignoring known, reasonable warnings about their health.
What Is Not Car Accident Negligence?
There are a few causes of accidents that may not amount to negligence, including:
1. Vehicle Defect
Sometimes, a car has an inherent defect. This defect may have occurred because of the manufacturer’s design or an error in building the car. Whatever the reason, the driver isn’t aware of the defect. They expect the vehicle to act normally, but it doesn’t.
An accident occurs. This is not an example of car accident negligence by the car driver. Instead, all injured parties may have a claim against the vehicle manufacturer for the defect that caused the accident.
2. Chain Reaction
A driver who collides with another driver may not be guilty of negligence if they’re the victim of a chain reaction. For example, two cars are driving in the same direction on a highway. One driver tries to change lanes and strikes the second vehicle.
The first car pushes the second car into the oncoming lane. There, the second driver collides with a third driver. The second driver is not responsible for negligence because they acted with caution at all times.
Attorneys For Car Accident Negligence
Are you wondering if car accident negligence occurred in your case? Do you want to know if your crash is an example of car accident negligence? We represent car accident victims in Las Vegas and throughout Nevada. Contact us today to talk about your case.