A T-bone car accident, also known as a side-impact collision, is a dangerous situation that happens when one vehicle violates the right-of-way of another. Traffic engineers design the rules of the road to avoid these crashes, which means there is almost always an illegal maneuver involved.
While T-bone accidents tend to damage the people in the car getting broadsided more than the one that does the broadsiding, either party could sustain terrible injuries.
But who is at fault? An experienced car accident attorney can examine the evidence to prove negligence and help you pursue compensation from the liable driver.
Why T-Bone Accidents Tend to Be Serious?
T-bone collisions can have devastating consequences for all cars involved, but there is a particular danger for the vehicle that gets a forceful side blow. This is mainly because, compared to other crashes, there is less of a buffer zone between the point of impact and the car’s occupants. Side airbags are also both less common and less effective, which can also exacerbate serious injuries.
Most T-bone accidents will happen at intersections where one vehicle has to yield to the other vehicle’s right-of-way, such as at traffic lights and Stop signs. Considering transit laws, something has to go terribly wrong to cause a side-impact collision.
The leading cause is negligence, which can constitute:
- Not properly signaling before making a turn
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Driving through a red light or ignoring a Stop sign
- Any form of distracted driving, especially texting
- Driving at reckless speeds and losing control of the vehicle
How Do Lawyers Prove Fault in a T-bone Car Accident?
After a T-bone collision, it is very common for both drivers to insist they had the right-of-way, and it will take a review of the evidence to establish who was at fault.
An experienced car accident attorney will build a case for liability using resources like:
- The Police Report: Police officers called to the scene of a T-bone accident will write their preliminary assessment of what caused the crash, including whether the drivers were speeding or under the influence of alcohol. The report will also document important information like contact details for witnesses, a diagram of how the cars were situated right after the crash, and any important physical evidence found at the scene.
- Video of the crash: Footage of the point of impact is often available from traffic cameras, dash cams, or even the exterior security cameras of local businesses.
- Witnesses: When there is a hotly disputed argument about who had the right-of-way, the statements from bystanders or fellow motorists can help resolve what happened in the lead-up to the collision.
- Forensic Car Accident Experts: Your car accident lawyer can hire accident reconstructionist to analyze the evidence and provide expert testimony about the causes of the crash and who should be liable.
- Data from on-board devices: The monitoring recorders that come standard with modern vehicles will preserve crucial information about the car’s behavior immediately before a crash. Your car accident lawyer can download, analyze, and use this data to establish key facts about the collision.
When the Parties Dispute Fault, a Car Accident Lawyer Can Help You?
The question of who had the right-of-way can get very contentious after a T-bone accident, especially if the accident led to major injuries and property damage. Having an experienced attorney handling your case can help you prove the liable party’s negligence, navigate the insurance process, and recover fair compensation for your damages.
To strengthen your claim, a car accident attorney can:
- Review all the available evidence: Your attorney’s team will analyze the police report, interview witnesses, try to find footage of the crash, and hire forensic experts that can substantiate your claim about having the right-of-way.
- Document and prove the extent of your damages: An attorney will determine the fair value of your T-bone accident claim, like medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, and intangible losses, to help you fight for maximum compensation.
- Negotiate with insurers: The liable party’s insurance company is likely to begin the negotiation with a lowball offer that does not account for the car accident victim’s damages. Having an attorney negotiate on your behalf will make a huge difference in receiving a reasonable settlement offer.
Hiring a Car Accident Attorney
A severe T-bone accident is a scary experience that creates a range of physical and financial costs that can turn your life upside down.
If the insurance company disputes responsibility for the crash, talk to a skilled car accident legal team as soon as possible. The right attorney understands the system and can represent your best interests, whether you pursue a settlement with the insurance company or take your case to trial.