Sideswipe accidents are some of the most common types of collisions on roads and highways in and around Folsom. These crashes occur when one vehicle strikes another vehicle, often in a sweeping motion along its side.
While these types of accidents may sound less serious than a T-bone or a head-on collision, the reality is that many people are severely injured in sideswipe accidents each year.
If another driver sideswiped you and caused you severe injuries and unexpected financial losses, get help from a skilled injury lawyer right away. The sideswipe car accident attorneys at The Law Office of Black & DePaoli, PC have more than 25 years of experience helping crash victims in Folsom and surrounding areas of Northern California. Our clients have recovered significant awards with our help.
We are ready to give you a free initial consultation about your case when you call us or reach out to us online.
What Is a Sideswipe Accident?
A sideswipe accident occurs when a vehicle moves into another traffic lane and collides with another vehicle already in the lane. That causes one vehicle to collide with the side of the other vehicle.
In addition to the damage from the initial impact, sideswipe accidents can cause a vehicle to spin out of control, often triggering additional collisions and injuries. Sideswipe accidents also frequently happen at high speeds on busy roads, which increases the chances of catastrophic or fatal injuries.
Causes of Sideswipe Collisions in Folsom
Sideswipe collisions often result from:
- Driver inattentiveness – If a driver doesn’t check their mirrors and blind spots before making a turn, changing lanes, or merging into traffic, the driver might not see another vehicle in their path and cause a sideswipe collision. Driver inattentiveness can also cause a sideswipe accident if the driver isn’t watching out for other vehicles trying to merge, change lanes, etc., as they might end up moving into another vehicle’s intended path.
- Distracted driving – Drivers who are busy looking at their phones, adjusting in-vehicle controls, snacking, talking to passengers, or otherwise distracted aren’t paying attention to what’s happening around them. That makes it much harder for them to recognize potential hazards that could lead to a sideswipe accident.
- Driving under the influence – When drivers operate a vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they experience a range of effects that hamper their driving performance and make a sideswipe accident more likely. These effects include dulled reflexes, problems recognizing and responding to hazardous situations, and an increased likelihood of risky driving behavior.
- Merging without caution – Merging is one of the most common situations in which sideswipe accidents occur. Carelessness by drivers is the main reason. Drivers who are merging need to make sure they match the speed of traffic and that there’s enough time and space for them to move safely.
- Drowsy driving – Drowsy driving poses many of the same hazards as driving while impaired. Drivers who don’t get enough rest before getting behind the wheel are more prone to errors of judgment, have impaired reflexes, and sometimes fall asleep at the wheel. Any of these factors can lead to a sideswipe accident.
- Failure to signal a lane change – Motorists use turn signals to alert other drivers about their intentions so they don’t speed up, pass, or do anything else that might cause a collision. Failure to use turn signals increases the chance of being involved in a sideswipe accident.
- Road rage – Drivers who let their anger get the better of them and succumb to “road rage” might weave through traffic, chase after other vehicles, forget to use their turn signals, and engage in other reckless behaviors that can all potentially lead to a sideswipe accident.
- Mechanical defects – A sudden tire blowout, steering system failure, or another mechanical defect can cause drivers to lose control of their vehicle and sideswipe someone else on the road.
- Poor road conditions – A slippery road surface caused by rain, snow, sleet, or ice can cause a driver to lose traction when merging or changing lanes, potentially leading to a sideswipe accident.
Common Sideswipe Collision Accident Injuries
Sideswipe collisions can result in significant injuries to crash victims, including:
- Back and spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Amputated and crushed limbs
- Broken bones and orthopedic injuries
- Severe lacerations and bruises
- Neck injuries, such as whiplash
- Damage to soft tissues (muscles, ligaments, tendons, etc.)
- Emotional distress (depression, anxiety, PTSD, etc.)
Who’s at Fault for a Sideswipe Accident in Folsom?
Depending on the circumstances of the crash, one or more parties could potentially be responsible for a sideswipe accident. Recovering fair compensation for your injuries and other losses will require proving that the other party acted negligently in some way.
To prove that the other driver was at fault, your attorney will investigate the accident and secure evidence that demonstrates negligence on the other party’s part. That could include:
- Information from police accident reports
- Eyewitness accounts
- Photos and videos from the accident scene
- Surveillance photos and videos
- Reports from forensic accident investigators
- Testimony from crash reconstructionists and expert witnesses
Compensation for Folsom Sideswipe Collision Accidents
Some common types of compensation accident victims in Folsom could recover include:
- Current and future medical bills
- Lost wages due to time missed from work
- Loss of future earnings if disabled
- Pain, suffering, and mental anguish
- Vehicle repairs or replacement