Side-Impact Collision

A Side-Impact Collision, often called a T-bone accident, happens when one vehicle hits the side of another. These types of accidents often result in serious injuries and fatalities due to the limited protection offered by the side of a vehicle compared to the front or rear.

Understanding the causes of side-impact collisions, potential liability, and the insurance claim and lawsuit process in Georgia is crucial for accident victims and their families.

Causes of Side-Impact Collisions

  • Running Red Lights or Stop Signs: One of the most common causes of side-impact collisions is a driver failing to stop at a red light or stop sign, resulting in their vehicle striking another vehicle traveling through the intersection.
  • Failure to Yield Right of Way: Drivers who fail to yield the right of way at intersections or when merging into traffic can cause side-impact collisions.
  • Distracted Driving: Distractions such as texting, talking on the phone, eating, or adjusting the radio can divert a driver’s attention from the road, leading to failure to observe traffic signals or other vehicles.
  • Speeding: Driving at excessive speeds reduces a driver’s ability to stop or react quickly, increasing the risk of side-impact collisions, especially at intersections.
  • Impaired Driving: Alcohol, drugs, and prescription medications can impair a driver’s judgment, coordination, and reaction time, making them more likely to cause accidents, including side-impact collisions.

Liability for a Side-Impact Collision

Liability in side-impact collisions depends on the circumstances of the accident and the parties involved.

In cases where one driver’s negligence or recklessness caused the collision, they may be held liable for the resulting damages. Negligent actions such as running a red light, failing to yield, or driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs can establish liability.

In some cases, both drivers may share fault for the accident, depending on the specific facts and circumstances. Georgia follows a modified comparative negligence system, which means that the amount of compensation a plaintiff can recover may be reduced if they are found partially at fault for the accident.

Insurance Claim Process After a T-Bone Accident

After a side-impact collision, victims should notify their insurance company and file a claim to report the accident.

The insurance company will investigate the accident, which may involve reviewing police reports, obtaining witness statements, and assessing the extent of damages to the vehicles and injuries to the parties involved.

Victims should provide the insurance company with all relevant information and documentation, including medical records, repair estimates, and photographs of the accident scene and vehicle damage.

Lawsuit Process

If the insurance settlement offered by the at-fault party’s insurance company is insufficient to cover the victim’s damages, or if liability is disputed, victims may consider pursuing legal action by filing a lawsuit.

In Georgia, victims typically have two years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit, according to the state’s statute of limitations.

A personal injury attorney experienced in handling side-impact collision cases can help victims navigate the legal process, gather evidence, assess liability, and pursue fair compensation for their injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, pain, and suffering.

Related Case Reference:
Barbara F. EVANS, Personal Representative of the Estate of Roy Evans, Deceased, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. GENERAL MOTORS CORPORATION, Defendant-Appellee.

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Local Auto Accidents

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