As COVID-19 continues to spread across the United States, government officials have made efforts to limit transmission by ordering residents to stay at home and only leave their homes for emergencies and essential services. As a result, there is considerably less traffic on the roads. Data from the Texas Department of Transportation shows that the overall number of crashes has fallen sharply on streets and highways from March to May.
However, around the country, including in Texas, some drivers are taking advantage of the open road by speeding on highways. Though the overall decline in crashes is steep, the number of crashes caused by reckless driving specifically did not fall compared to 2019. During the three-month period captured, 646 reckless crashes, including those caused by speeding and impaired driving, killed at least one person – only an 11% drop in fatal crashes compared to last year.
The number of issued traffic citations for speeding has also jumped in the state. While Houston’s main three police agencies issued just 123 citations in February to drivers going 100 mph or more, in March and April, that number jumped to 175.
What is Reckless Driving?
Speeding on the road is a form of reckless driving, and in most states, every violator is considered guilty of a misdemeanor. Reckless driving refers to driving that violates safety laws and/or puts other drivers and individuals at risk of being injured in an accident.
Common behaviors considered to be reckless driving along with speeding include:
- Tailgating: Tailgating refers to the practice of driving too closely behind another car, which can often cause accidents when the car in front stops suddenly. Failing to give yourself enough space in front of you gives you less time to slow or stop suddenly for traffic or some other road hazard. All drivers should be at least three car lengths behind the car in front of them.
- Failure to yield: Many drivers cause collisions when they fail to yield to the right of way of other vehicles, such as when they attempt to make left-hand turns. Failing to yield to oncoming traffic when turning left can often result in a T-bone accident, which can produce serious injuries. Reckless drivers also put pedestrians and bicyclists in danger when they fail to wait for them to legally cross the road.
- Failure to signal: All drivers are required to signal and check their blind spots before safely merging or changing lanes. Many car accidents occur when drivers simply swerve or change lanes without warning or checking to make sure no one else is in their path.
Serving Texans Since 1976
At the Law Office of James M. Stanley, our car accident attorneys believe that reckless drivers should be held responsible for their negligent actions, especially if they harmed other innocent drivers, pedestrians, and passengers. All drivers must abide by state and federal traffic safety laws and are obligated to keep others around them on the road safe. When they violate this obligation, they need to pay. Our team has successfully recovered damages for countless injured clients, including property damage, pain and suffering, medical bills, and lost wages. We strive to provide our clients with convenience during a challenging time, which is why we can come to you when you call, whether you’re in the hospital or at home. We also work on a contingency fee basis, meaning we don’t get paid until you do.
Call (817) 591-4222, or contact us onlinefor a free consultation if you’ve been injured by a careless or negligent driver. The Law Office of James M. Stanley has helped countless injured clients recover since 1976 and can help you pursue the justice you deserve.