T-boning a police vehicle traveling westbound on West Martin Street. The police officer inside was treated for a head injury at University Hospital, and the driver was taken into custody, facing charges of evading arrest and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. An injured civilian could choose to bring a civil suit against the fleeing driver over any injuries they sustained, though on-duty police may not do the same thing. If you have been in a T-bone collision, your injuries are likely severe.
Causes and Definitions
A T-bone or side-impact collision is when the front end of a car strikes the side of another vehicle, usually causing severe injury to those sitting on that particular side of the second car. There are many different causes of this type of accident – that is, many situations where a side-impact collision will be more likely to happen than, say, a rear or front-end crash. Running a stop sign or a red light like the driver on West Martin Street is one of the most common causes of these types of crashes; traffic will have begun to travel on the green light and a driver with a red light may simply not stop.
A host of different injuries may happen with this type of crash, especially since victims in a T-bone accident do not necessarily have the same safety features available to them that those in a front or rear-end collision would. Studies have shown that seat belts or other restraints do slightly raise the survival rate of these crashes, but in most vehicles, no side airbags or other protection devices are present. Injuries may be as mild as broken bones, cuts, and bruises, or may be as severe as traumatic brain injuries and spinal damage.
Negligence Per Se May Be an Option
If you have been injured in this type of crash, most of the time you will be looking to bring suit under a theory of negligence. Negligence is when a person fails to act with reasonable care, or when they act with recklessness or indifference to human life. However, you may be able to allege what is called negligence per se, which is a theory that can help to eliminate some of the work in establishing a negligence case. Negligence per se is defined as negligence that has broken a specific law, as opposed to being against the ‘reasonable person’ standard that the law requires of everyone. For example, the West Martin Street driver violated a law by running the stop sign.
This is important and potentially valuable because in a negligence case, a plaintiff must prove that the defendant failed to act with reasonable care (‘breached a duty’), and that the defendant’s actions were the sole reason for the plaintiff’s injuries. However, negligence is a very subjective finding that can sometimes confuse juries. If negligence per se can be shown at trial, then negligence does not have to be determined by the jury – it has already been determined because the driver has broken a law, which implies negligence in itself.
Call an Experienced New Braunfels Car Accident Attorney
While the driver fleeing on West Martin Street is still awaiting trial as of this writing, it is crucial that you understand your options should you be involved in a similar type of crash. The skilled New Braunfels auto accident lawyers at the Bettersworth Law Firm can help you determine how best to seek the compensation you need to get your life back in order. Contact our offices today at 888-392-0039 to schedule a free consultation.