If a motor vehicle strikes the side of another car, this is referred to as a side impact collision. Side impacts accidents or “T-bone collisions” are incredibly deadly. This is because the brunt of the impact is directed towards the car’s occupants. In some cases, if a car hits the passenger side-panel, then the passenger could suffer from serious injury or even death.
T-bone accidents are serious and can result in life-long injuries. It’s common for insurance companies to aggressively attempt to offer a settlement. Most likely, this settlement will be mediocre and not cover all associated costs. This is why it’s important that you contact an experienced personal injury attorney to assess your case.
Lawyer for T-Bone Accidents in Conroe, Texas
T-bone accidents can be very dangerous and even lethal. Don’t admit to fault or accept any settlements from your insurance yet. If you’re injured by a side-impact accident, it’s important that you contact a personal injury attorney. You could be entitled to compensation for your injuries.
Evans & Powell, PLLC is a group of passionate attorneys with years of experience. We care about all our clients and do whatever we can to help them recover. Whether that’s evaluating your case, collecting evidence, or speaking to insurance adjusters. With Evans & Powell, PLLC, you are guaranteed quality legal service.
Call (713) 622 - 2000 today for a free consultation surrounding your case. We practice law throughout the greater Conroe area including Panorama, Patton Village, Woodbranch and Willis.
Overview of Side Impact Collisions in Texas
- Common Causes for a T-Bone Accident;
- Injuries from a Side-Impact Crash;
- Liability in a T-Bone Accident;
- What If I’m Partially At-Fault for the Accident?
- Additional Resources
Common Causes for a T-Bone Collision
Side-impact collisions happen or a variety of reasons. Typically, a T-bone accident happens because a driver was negligent on the road. Some common scenarios for a side-impact collision is pulling out of a driveway or parking lot without accounting for regular traffic. All Texas drivers must be aware of the road and follow traffic rules. Drivers who aren’t vigilant or follow state laws could be considered negligent.
Listed below are some common reasons for a T-bone accident.
- Pulling Out of a Driveway/Parking Lot – Reversing out of a parking spot means the driver must be aware of oncoming traffic. Pulling out too quickly without looking for traffic could result in a side-impact collision.
- Distracted Driving – All drivers must be vigilant on the road. If a driver is texting, eating, changing the radio or any other activity, they are more likely to get into a side impact accident.
- Running a Red/Yellow Light – Barreling through a red light at an intersection is a common way to get into a T-bone collision. All drivers must follow traffic rules, including slowing down at a yellow light and stopping completely at a red light.
- Traffic Signs/Signals Issues – Stop signs and other traffic signals help direct motor vehicles. If a traffic sign is bent, covered, missing or hard to read it could create a side-impact collision.
- Blocking an Intersection – If a driver is blocking an intersection, they could possibly be hit by an oncoming driver. No driver is allowed to block an intersection at any time in Texas.
- Inclement Weather – Inclement weather can result in poor visibility and unsafe road conditions. Texas drivers must be cautious when driving through inclement weather and not speed. If a driver speeds or ignored inclement weather warnings, they could get into a T-bone crash.
Common Injuries from a Side-Impact Crash
If a car strikes another automobile on the side-panel, it’s highly possible that the occupants are injured. The injuries from a T-bone collision depend on several factors. High-speed crashes or T-bones in busy intersections tend to have severe injuries. In some cases, the driver isn’t aware of the full scope of their injuries until days or even weeks later. It’s important that you take legal action if you’re injured to ensure that you’re not buried in medical bills.
The following are some common injuries from a side-impact collision.
- Broken bones;
- Burn injuries;
- Brain injuries;
- Spinal injuries;
- Neck injuries;
- Internal bleeding; or
- Psychological damage.
Liability in a T-Bone Collision in Texas
If you wish to file a claim for your injuries, you must prove that the other driver was negligent. A person is negligent if they fail to act or act recklessly in a situation where a substantial and justifiable risk can occur. For example, a driver who runs red lights isn’t upholding their duty to follow Texas safety laws. Since the driver breached their duty to follow traffic rules, they could be considered negligent in civil court.
In personal injury law, you must prove that:
- The defendant had a duty to follow traffic laws and be aware of the road while driving;
- The defendant knowingly breached their duty;
- You were injured because of this breach of duty; and
- You suffered as a result.
If you win the case, then you’ll receive a settlement for your injuries. The court determines how much you’re compensated by your damages. Damages are the losses you suffered because of the T-bone collision. These damages include:
- Medical expenses;
- Car repairs;
- Lost earnings;
- Reduced earning capacity;
- Rehabilitation costs;
- Therapy costs;
- Loss of enjoyment for life;
- Loss of consortium; and
- Pain and suffering.
What if I’m Partially At-Fault for the Accident?
Sometimes both parties are partially at-fault in a side-impact collision. Texas is a modified comparative fault state and uses proportionate responsibility when both parties are partially at-fault. This means that the court may find your partially responsible for your injury.
If you have proportionate responsibility, you may be liable for a portion of your settlement. For example, if you were changing the radio while another car pulled out of a driveway without looking, you and the defendant would both have proportionate responsibility. The settlement will be appropriate by fault percentage. If the defendant is 70 percent responsible for the accident, then he or she must pay 70 percent of the settlement.
It’s important to understand that Texas follows the 51 percent bar rule. The state will prohibit you from collecting damages if you’re 51 percent or more responsible.
Side Crash Tests – Visit the official website for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and find more information about their side-panel crash testing. Access the site to see how the IIHS performs crash tests, videos from the tests, how the ratings work, and the process of changing airbags for better results.
Crash Research – Visit the official website for the National Highway and Transportation Administration (NHTSA) to find more information about their crash research. Access the different programs created by NHTSA to tackle crash injuries, enhanced safety measures and crash avoidance.
Lawyer for Side-Impact Collisions in Montgomery County, Texas
If you were involved in a T-bone collision and sustained an injury, it’s important that you contact an experienced attorney. It’s possible that you’re eligible for compensation. Don’t wait a moment longer with your injuries. Call the attorneys at Evans & Powell, PLLC for trusted legal representation.
Evans & Powell, PLLC have over two decades of legal experience. We are familiar with side-impact crashes, head-on collisions, rear-end collisions and other type of automobile accident case. Our attorneys will investigate your case and fight for you in the courtroom. Call us now at (713) 622 - 2000 and schedule a free consultation for your case.
Evans & Powell, PLLC practices law throughout the Montgomery County area including Willis, Panorama, Houston, Conroe, Magnolia, and Splendora.
This article was last updated on February 13th, 2019.