It’s the stuff of action movies: a criminal suspect tries to evade police; a high speed chase ensues; shots are fired; law enforcement officers come at the subject from all directions. It all comes to a dramatic conclusion when the suspect slams the stolen vehicle head-on into a sheriff’s vehicle, resulting in the Florida detective being airlifted to a nearby hospital, and the suspect being arrested and charged with a litany of crimes.
While not every head on collision is accompanied with such dramatic details, victims of such crashes often experience horrendous injuries, or even death. And they are more common than you might think. More than one in ten fatal rural crashes are head-on collisions, and seven percent of urban fatalities are head-ons. If you or a loved one has been the victim of such an incident due to a reckless or negligent driver, sharing your story with a local personal injury attorney could prove to be worthwhile.
What Leads to Head-on Collisions?
A number of issues can result in drivers crossing the median into oncoming traffic. Some of the most common circumstances reported include:
- Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol;
- Exceeding posted speed limits and losing control of the vehicle;
- Driving while fatigued and drifting into oncoming vehicles;
- Passing on a double yellow line when visibility is limited;
- Swerving around unexpected obstacles, such as animals, potholes, or debris;
- Confusion on one-way roads or freeway ramps; and
- Weather that limits visibility and/or traction.
Tips to Avoid these Accidents
While not every accident is avoidable, there are several tips you can heed to avoid being the cause of a head-on collision:
- Commit to resisting the temptation to drive after using prescription medications, alcohol, or drugs that may impair response time and/or motor functioning;
- Use extreme caution when passing, and do so only when permitted;
- Pay attention to road signs and markings;
- Pay attention to signs of fatigue, and take regular rest breaks on long road trips;
- Reduce speed when weather conditions necessitate;
- Stay alert to potential road hazards.
If a Vehicle is Approaching in your Lane…
Although you may be driving cautiously, others may not. If someone is careening toward you, what should you do?
- Slow down;
- Flash headlights;
- Lay on the horn;
- Stay as far right as possible;
- Choose going off the road into something rather than experiencing a head-on with an oncoming vehicle. The velocity and force of the collision will be less, increasing your chances of survival.
The Aftermath of a Head-on Collision
Following this tragic type of accident, the emotional, financial, and physical costs can be enormous. In order to ensure responsible parties pay for their actions, get the aggressive and experienced legal talent at the Law Offices of Robert W. Elton on your side. Contact us in Daytona & Ormond Beach for a confidential consultation today.