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They rarely are accidents

One of the reasons we refer to collisions between motor vehicles as motor vehicle accidents is the element of random chance as to the participants. While there are some cases, such as those involving alcohol and resulting in charges of criminal vehicular homicide, few drivers intend harm when they set off down the highway.

Even among those incidents we call “accidents,” where there is no criminal culpability and no intentionality, there is usually negligence. Because all drivers are held to a standard of care of a reasonable prudent driver, failure to adhere to that standard while driving can make you liable for the injuries and damage your negligence cause.

The important element here is not that you did not mean to have a car accident, but that your driving was deficient for the conditions and allowed a crash or collision to occur. When you glance down at your phone when you hear a text message arrive, you are taking your eyes off the road and believe it will on be for a second or two.

In reality, that apparent “second or two” may stretch out and become more than a few as you attempt to comprehend the text. When you look up, it is too late to stop in time to avoid crashing into the rear of a vehicle that has suddenly applied its brakes. That is negligence, and it is foreseeable that a collision will occur and it is not “an accident.”

Sadly, one element of car and truck crashes that is accidental is the level of injuries suffered. Some crash scenes will look horrific and yet the participants may escape practically unharmed.

In other crashes, the damage will not appear, at first, to be catastrophic, and yet a driver may die at the scene. Such a crash occurred between a car and truck near Allentown. The woman in the car was killed during light snow Wednesday night. It appeared from photos that the car was struck in the driver’s side door, which proved deadly for the driver.

Mcall.com, “Lower Macungie woman, 53, killed in Route 100 crash is identified,” Frank Warner, December 11, 2014

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