While most drivers navigate Indiana’s roads and highways responsibly, there are certain types of dangerous drivers that can pose a threat to road safety.
Below, we discuss some dangerous drivers to look out for, along with tips on how to handle these situations.
If you are injured in a crash caused by any of these negligent individuals, you have the right to pursue compensation for your damages. Call our auto collision lawyers in South Bend today. The consultation is free and there are no upfront fees.
Aggressive drivers are those who have complete disregard for traffic rules and the safety of others.
These individuals often engage in the following behaviors:
- Excessive speeding
- Abrupt lane changes
- Aggressive gestures
- Verbal abuse towards other drivers
If you encounter an aggressive driver, there are several things to keep in mind, including the following:
- Remain calm – avoid responding to the aggressive driver’s behavior with your own anger or aggression, as it may escalate the situation.
- Keep your distance – slow down or change lanes to create a buffer zone that provides you with more time to react if necessary.
- Use your turn signals – this helps the aggressive driver understand your movements and reduces the chances of a collision caused by sudden lane changes or unexpected maneuvers.
Proving someone was driving aggressively prior to an accident may require testimony from a witness, so it would be in your best interest to get the contact information of anyone who saw the accident and have your attorney speak with that person or persons.
Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of car accidents across the country.
There are a lot of potential distractions behind the wheel. Drivers are more likely to engage in certain distracting activities than others, including the following:
- Using a phone
- Eating and/or drinking
- Focusing on the GPS
- Talking with passengers
- Fiddling with a vehicle’s entertainment system
Drivers should remember to keep their distance from anyone engaged in these activities behind the wheel.
Although distracted driving may be more difficult to prove, a distracted driver is more likely to cause rear-end collisions or run a red light or stop sign. Proving fault for the collision in these cases is usually easier.
If a distracted driver injured you, but fault for the crash is not immediately clear, your attorney may be able to speak to witnesses or pull information from that driver’s phone records to show whether he or she was on the phone before the crash occurred.
Drivers under the influence of drugs, alcohol or prescription medications may exhibit erratic behavior, impaired judgment, delayed reactions and poor control over their vehicles. This can all lead to a serious accident with potentially deadly consequences.
Like other types of dangerous drivers, it is best to avoid anyone who seems to be driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. It is also a good idea to keep an eye out for vehicles swerving, braking suddenly or driving at inconsistent speeds.
If you are injured in a crash with an impaired driver, the police officer who responds to the scene may be able to conduct a sobriety test on the individual. The result of this test should be included in the police report so you may be able to use it as evidence when you file your claim.
Inexperienced drivers may lack the ability to calculate when it is safe to cross an uncontrolled intersection when they do not have the right-of-way. These drivers may also have difficulty changing lanes because they cannot easily measure the visual distance between vehicles.
There are also some inexperienced drivers who may think the rules of the road do not apply to them. This is usually the category where teen drivers fall in. These drivers will use their phones, speed, fail to come to a full stop at intersections and possibly tailgate.
Although alcohol and drugs, including prescription drugs, often cause drowsiness, these are not the only contributing factors. Drivers who work alternate shifts or overnight are common in the early morning or late evening hours. Truck drivers who are on the road for long stretches of time may also become drowsy and cause an accident.
A drowsy driver may exhibit all the same behaviors as an impaired driver, so they should be avoided in the same manner.
Unlike with impaired driving, though, it is much harder to prove drowsiness as the cause of an accident. However, your attorney may be able to prove this using work records, showing the person’s late hours, or medical records to show the driver was on drowsiness-inducing medication.
Overly Cautious Drivers
Like inexperienced drivers, an overly cautious driver may struggle to change lanes or merge into traffic. However, this may not be due to lack of experience. Instead, it is likely out of fear.
Nervous drivers generally take extraordinarily precautious measures, like driving below the speed limit or waiting for a roadway to clear out entirely before merging. While this sounds like safe driving, it can be dangerous because they may inadvertently create aggressive drivers.
While you may not be likely to collide with a timid driver, you may get hit by an aggressive driver he or she created. Therefore, it is generally a good idea to keep your distance from an overly cautious driver as well.
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