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Advocating for Reckless Driving Accident Victims

Reckless driving can be defined as driving with willful or wanton disregard for safety or showing a willful disregard of consequences. It is a misdemeanor offense in South Carolina, punishable by a jail sentence of up to 30 days and a fine of up to $200, under S.C. Code Ann. Section 56-5-2920. In this context, willful means acting deliberately, and wanton means unruly, without checks or limitations.

Generally, reckless driving goes beyond mere negligence in operating a motor vehicle. This type of driving behavior poses a serious threat to other people on the roadways.

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What Driving Behaviors Constitute Reckless Driving?

Also called aggressive driving, reckless driving is operating a vehicle in a way that endangers or is likely to endanger people or property. Examples of reckless driving include:

  • Speeding
  • Tailgating
  • Passing on the shoulder
  • Erratic or unsafe lane changes
  • Failure to yield the right-of-way
  • Disregarding traffic signs and signals
  • Cutting other drivers off
  • Driving impaired from alcohol or drugs
  • Turning without signaling
  • Wrong way driving
  • Making illegal U-turns
  • Driving over the median
  • Making abrupt stops
  • Texting while driving
  • Exceeding the posted speed limit in school zones or work zones

What Types of Injuries Can Reckless Driving Cause?

Reckless driving can lead to deadly head-on, T-bone, side-swipe, or rear-end collisions, causing serious or fatal injuries. Reckless driving accidents often happen at high speeds, with a greater force of impact and more severe injuries. Types of injuries frequently sustained in reckless driving crashes include:

  • Fractured bones
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Internal organ damage
  • Spinal cord injury leading to paralysis
  • Amputation
  • Severe back and neck injuries
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Death

What Can You Do to Avoid Reckless Drivers on the Roadways?

Aggressive driving is more common in congested traffic areas. To stay safe, you need to remain constantly aware of driving behavior around you. To avoid reckless drivers:

  • Stay focused on driving and concentrate on the road ahead: Do not text or talk on the phone until you reach your destination and stop your car.
  • Stick to the speed limit: Speeding is a leading contributing factor to motor vehicle accidents. The faster your vehicle is traveling, the less time you must stop or slow down to avoid a collision and the greater the impact in a crash.
  • Do not tailgate: At a minimum, you should leave enough room between your vehicle and the one ahead to see its tires. If you fail to allow enough distance and the driver ahead stops abruptly, you could be involved in a rear-end collision.
  • Remember to signal: The more notice you give other drivers of where you intend to go, the safer you are likely to be.
  • Be considerate of other drivers: Get out of the way of drivers who seem desperate to go somewhere. If a driver is trying to get over, fall back or speed up to make room. Not only is it polite, but it can also help keep you safe.
  • Put as much distance as you can between your vehicle and aggressive drivers: This is the best way to keep yourself and your passengers safe when a driver is acting aggressively.

Who May Be Liable for a Reckless Driving Accident?

If a reckless driver caused your accident and injuries, that driver may be held liable. In some cases, there may be other potentially liable parties, such as an employer, if the driver who hit you was driving on the job, or a mechanic who contributed to the crash through faulty repairs.

Our Charleston auto accident lawyers at Allen Law can investigate your accident to determine who was at fault and aggressively pursue the compensation you are entitled to receive. Call us to schedule a free consultation at (843) 882-5005.

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