There are many factors that lead to motor vehicle accidents, and negligence is one of the most common and dangerous causes. It's important to know what to do if you're involved in an accident caused by negligence.
What is negligence?
There are three elements to negligence: duty, breach of duty, and causation. Duty is the legal obligation to take reasonable care to avoid foreseeable harm to others. For instance, all drivers have a duty to operate their vehicles safely and obey traffic laws. Breach of duty occurs when someone fails to meet the standard of care, such as speeding or running a red light.
Causation is the link between the breach of duty and the resulting harm. For instance, if a driver runs a red light and hits another vehicle, the accident was caused by the driver's negligence.
What are the types of negligence?
Distracted driving, drunk driving and fatigued driving are all types of negligence that can lead to motor vehicle accidents. Distracted driving is any activity that takes a driver's attention away from the road. This can include talking on the phone, texting, eating or even changing the radio station.
Drunk driving is when a driver gets behind the wheel after drinking alcohol, and fatigued driving is when a driver gets behind the wheel while tired or sleepy. Both drunk and fatigued driving are forms of impaired driving, which is any type of driving that's done while the driver's abilities are impaired. Impaired driving can also be caused by drugs, both legal and illegal.
If you're involved in an accident caused by negligence, there are a few things you should do. First, call the police and make sure to get a police report. This will be important if you decide to file an insurance claim or sue the negligent driver. Second, take pictures of the accident scene and any damage to your vehicle. These pictures may be helpful in proving the extent of the damage. Third, get the contact information of any witnesses who saw the accident. Witnesses can provide valuable testimony if you decide to take legal action.