Mintz Law Firm
When a Denver driver gets behind the wheel, they must operate their vehicle safely with a reasonable degree of care. This means following all traffic safety and driving laws and not engaging in negligent behavior that could be hazardous to themselves and other drivers. Unfortunately, not all drivers take this duty seriously, resulting in reckless driving. If you were in a reckless driving accident in Denver, contact the experienced attorneys at the Mintz Law Firm.
What Is Reckless Driving, and How Does Colorado Combat It?
Colorado defines a reckless driver as anyone who drives a motor vehicle, bicycle, or scooter with blatant disregard for the safety of others or property. Colorado prosecutes reckless driving as a misdemeanor, with fines of up to $300 and jail time up to 90 days. Repeat offenses may result in fines of up to $1,000 or up to six months in jail.
It is important to remember that careless driving is a less severe form of reckless driving, but it can still be hazardous. If you were involved in a car accident because of a reckless or careless driver, contact the Mintz Law Firm.
Reckless driving is an incredibly hazardous and unnecessary form of driving because drivers fail to account for other people on the road. Some common forms of reckless driving in Denver include:
- Excessive speeding: Speeding is a top cause of accidents, but excessive speeding may fall under reckless driving. When drivers speed, it increases the amount of time they need to stop safely, but it decreases the time drivers have to react to other vehicles or road hazards. Crashes at high speeds usually cause more significant damage and injuries than low-speed collisions.
- Ignoring traffic laws: Drivers who do not stop at traffic lights or stop signs or who weave in and out of lanes are more likely to cause accidents. Drivers may cause a side-impact collision or a T-bone crash, which can cause severe injuries. If you notice a vehicle doing this, keep your distance.
- Street racing: Those who race their vehicles down roads pose a substantial danger to drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians who also use the road. Racing becomes even more hazardous when drivers take up both lanes or cross into opposing traffic.
- Illegal passing: Most roads indicate when passing can occur safely with a broken line. On roads with solid lines, drivers should not pass. Passing on solid lines could make it difficult to see oncoming vehicles, increasing the risk of a head-on collision.
- Drunk driving: People who drive under the influence of alcohol are more likely to engage in reckless driving behaviors, such as the above examples.
If you notice a driver engaging in reckless behavior, it is best to let them pass. Never try to cut them off or speed up to them, as you may cause an accident. Instead, pull to a safe location and report the vehicle to local law enforcement.
When a reckless driver causes a crash, the injuries can be severe. A reckless driving accident can result in injuries such as:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal injuries
- Loss of limbs
- Internal bleeding
- Organ damage
- Severe burns
When a person suffers from a severe injury, they do not just suffer physically. These injuries may also lead to emotional harm, mental anguish, or post-traumatic stress disorder, all of which can take years to recover fully.
The immediate aftermath of a reckless driving accident can be overwhelming, but the steps you take might be vital to your case. One of the first things you should always do is contact the police, especially in reckless driving accidents. Additionally, you must report the crash to law enforcement if anyone involved sustained severe injuries or died, the crash damaged public property, the other driver left the scene, or if a driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Furthermore, the police may issue a reckless driving citation, which may aid your claim.
While you wait for officers to arrive, document the accident scene. Photograph the crash and your injuries. Photos of weather and road conditions may also be helpful. Speak to any witnesses, if there are any, and ask for their contact information.
After a reckless driving accident in Colorado, you should seek medical attention. Even if you physically feel fine, you might have internal injuries only a doctor can diagnose. Some symptoms may not show right away, and you risk an insurance representative arguing that your injuries resulted from a different accident if you wait to see a doctor.
Once you seek medical care, contact a Denver reckless driving accident lawyer. Recovery should be your top priority, so allow an experienced attorney to handle your case. You might not be familiar with Colorado’s personal injury laws, and one misinterpretation may cost you your entire settlement.
Just because you were involved in a car accident does not mean you are entitled to financial compensation. To receive compensation, you must first prove that the other party was acting negligently. Evidence may include police reports, witness statements, or video footage. After reviewing your case, a Denver reckless driving accident lawyer may be able to recover the following damages:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Therapy bills
- Pain and suffering
In some rare cases, a court may award you punitive damages. Judges award these when the defendant acted in a highly negligent manner and to deter similar behavior from others in the future.
If you were in a car accident in Denver because of a reckless driver, contact the Mintz Law Firm. Our auto accident attorneys have more than 150 years of combined experience, and you can be confident that we will do everything possible to obtain a favorable outcome. We dedicate ourselves to achieving justice for all our clients and will guide you through this challenging time with compassion and respect. To schedule a free consultation, call (303) 462-2999 or complete our contact form.