Apportioning Fault In A Lane Change Accident
As traffic continues to increase on Florida’s roadways, drivers are becoming more and more at risk of being involved in a collision. Changing lanes has proven to be particularly dangerous, with many drivers failing to check their blind spot or to even use their blinkers as required under Florida law. In fact, improper lane changes are one of the leading causes of car crashes in the state. Unfortunately, despite causing serious property damage and injuries, recovering compensation after these kinds of crashes can be difficult, with both parties arguing that the other was at fault. With the aid of an experienced Fort Lauderdale auto accident attorney it is, however, possible to get to the bottom of lane change accidents.
What Does Florida Law Require for Legal Lane Changes?
Under Florida law, drivers who wish to change lanes are required to check their blind spots to ensure that the lane is clear. If the road is clear, the driver must then use his or her blinker to indicate the intent to merge. While these rules seem straightforward, liability for lane change accidents often proves difficult to determine, especially if the at-fault driver is misrepresenting what actually happened. However, if the parties can determine whether the driver who was struck was legally traveling in his or her lane prior to the crash, then the other driver can be held liable for resulting damages.
Other Causes of Lane Change Accidents
Besides being linked to a failure to check their blind spots, use their blinkers, or make sure that there is enough distance between vehicles, drivers who cause lane change accidents also often:
- Change lanes while entering a curve in the road;
- Change lanes while traveling uphill and unable to see other vehicles;
- Change lanes in an area where lane changes are illegal; or
- Change lanes when weather conditions, like heavy rain or fog, make it unsafe to do so.
Unfortunately, even in these cases, determining fault in a lane change crash can be difficult and will typically require an in-depth investigation on the part of the injured driver. If obtained, however, certain types of evidence can be used to prove liability, including photos from the accident scene, video footage of the crash, data from the vehicles’ on-board electronic systems, cell phone records, and BAC test results. An accident reconstruction expert can also use this evidence to demonstrate what happened on the date of the collision, which can be crucial in convincing a jury of negligence on the part of the at-fault driver.
Discuss Your Case with Our Legal Team
If you were injured in a collision after another driver improperly changed lanes, you may be facing expensive medical bills and vehicle repair costs. Fortunately, those who sustain serious injuries in these kinds of crashes are often entitled to compensation for their losses. To learn more about your own legal options following this type collision, please call 954-566-9919 and speak with one of the dedicated car accident lawyers at Boone & Davis today.