How Do Sideswipe Accidents Happen?

October 25, 2020

Sideswipe collisions can happen seemingly out of nowhere. If they occur at low speeds, they may not result in injuries. Typically, one car just brushes the other and the sides of both vehicles suffer slight damage.  However, when high speeds are involved, one or both vehicles may spin out or overturn, causing serious harm. Drivers are often keen on avoiding rear-end accidents and head-on collisions, but sideswipe accidents are often forgotten.

Sideswipe accidents occur when the sides of two vehicles collide. The vehicles may be traveling in the same direction or two opposite directions. These accidents don’t happen as often as rear-end collisions and they usually cause less damage.

If you’re a Georgia driver, you may find it helpful to understand how these crashes occur and what you should do if you become involved in one. Sideswipe crashes often result in disputes over liability so you will likely need a Georgia car accident lawyer to help you.

Common Causes of Sideswipe Collisions

Usually, one driver is trying to switch lanes and they don’t realize another car is in their blind spot. However, sideswipe accidents can also occur when a tired, careless or distracted, driver veers into another lane and strikes another car.

Drivers may take their eyes off the road because they’re eating, using a mobile device, brushing their hair or applying makeup. Drivers can also cause accidents when they fall asleep at the wheel. Driving while intoxicated and failing to yield are also responsible for sideswipe accidents. And sometimes, angry drivers intentionally sideswipe other vehicles.

Many of these crashes result only in property damage. A vehicle’s door may jam or there may be an ugly scratch along the side of the car. However, if both vehicles were traveling at a high rate of speed, these accidents can be catastrophic or even deadly. Victims and their families may need Georgia car accident attorneys to help them recover compensation. To claim damages, you need to prove that the other driver was at fault.

The Dangers of Sideswipe Collisions

Often, when drivers realize that a crash is about to occur, they tend to overcorrect or rapidly move away from the other vehicle. This sudden action may cause them to jerk the steering wheel and lose control of the vehicle. This can lead to a secondary head-on or rear-end collision. Cars can also flip over when this happens.

Sideswipe accidents can also cause drivers to collide with objects when they try to get away from the other vehicle. They can crash into trees, signs, light posts, guardrails, and other items.

Common injuries resulting from these crashes include:

  • Broken bones. Accident victims can sustain multiple bone fractures on one side of the body.
  • Amputations. Victims can lose a limb during the incident as the vehicle scrapes past, or afterward if doctors can’t repair or save an injured limb.
  • Spinal cord damage. Serious accidents can put lots of force on the spine and in some cases, paralysis can result.
  • Traumatic brain injuries. During a sideswipe collision, the victim’s brain may strike against the inside of the skull. Some victims of traumatic brain injuries can no longer function as they did before the injury.

Proving Fault Following Your Car Accident

Usually, the driver who drifted into the other lane or failed to check their blind spot is held liable. However, it can be difficult to determine who was at fault when the accident occurs at high speeds and the drivers give conflicting accounts. That’s why it’s so important to gather evidence at the scene if you are physically able.

You should take photos of the damage to the vehicles as well as your injuries if they are visible. You should also try to capture the larger scene from as many angles as possible. In addition, it’s important that you seek prompt medical attention and then contact an attorney so they can investigate and collect further evidence. Without proof, you won’t able to assign blame to the other driver. Eyewitness testimony, photos, video footage, and police reports can all be used to support your claim.

Contact Joe Durham Jr. P.C. Today to Get Help with Your Case

If you suffered serious injuries in sideswipe accidents, you may be entitled to compensation. However, it won’t be easy to prove fault on your own. Schedule a free consultation with a Georgia automobile accident attorney at Joe Durham Jr. P.C. today and learn about your legal options. If you hire us, you won’t have to pay until we recover damages for you. Contact us today to get started.