Who is at fault in brake check collisions?
Have you heard of a brake check? It’s a dangerous and aggressive maneuver that some drivers use to intentionally provoke a collision. In this blog post, we will explore what a brake check is, its implications, and the challenges of establishing liability in brake-check crashes.
Understanding Brake Checks:
A brake check occurs when a driver suddenly slams on their brakes without any valid reason or warning.
While there are genuine cases where drivers may need to brake suddenly to avoid a potential accident, a brake check is different. It is a deliberate and potentially dangerous maneuver that can cause the vehicle behind to rear-end the brake-checking driver.
Liability in Brake-Check Crashes:
In the event of a brake-check crash, the driver who slammed on their brakes is often hoping to shift the blame onto you, the victim. Typically, in rear-end collisions, the driver behind is held liable. However, if a thorough crash investigation reveals that the collision was a result of a deliberate brake check, you may have a legal claim to hold the at-fault driver responsible for the damages.
Establishing liability in brake-check crashes can be challenging. As the victim, you need to prove that the driver who performed the brake check owed you a legal duty, that it was an act of negligence with no valid reason, and that it directly caused your crash and resulting damages.
Road Rage and Motivations:
Drivers who engage in brake checks often do so out of road rage. These drivers may have a shorter fuse and resort to aggressive behavior when they feel offended or inconvenienced. Reasons for a brake check could include tailgating, being cut off, failure to signal lane changes, or simply trying to annoy or get another driver to move out of their way.
Legal Options and Evidence:
While brake checking may not be explicitly illegal in certain states, including Washington, if you’re injured in a brake-check crash, you may still be able to pursue a personal injury lawsuit or an insurance claim against the responsible driver. However, gathering strong evidence to support your case is crucial.
Evidence that can help strengthen your case includes:
- Video footage: Traffic or dash cam recordings, cellphone captures, or any other reliable visual evidence.
- Witness testimony: Objective witness statements can carry significant weight in supporting your claim.
- Police report documentation: If a responding officer confirms that a brake check caused the crash, their report can be valuable evidence.
Seeking Legal Assistance:
Establishing liability in brake-check crashes can be complex. Having expert assistance can greatly help navigate the legal complexities and build a strong case on your behalf. If you find yourself in this situation, contacting a trusted attorney with experience in personal injury law is crucial.
At Elsner Law Firm, we have the knowledge and expertise to handle these cases. Our team can help you gather the necessary evidence and fight for your rights. Call us today for a free consultation at 206-447-1425. Your wellbeing and legal protection matter to us.
A brake check is an intentional and dangerous driving maneuver that puts lives at risk. If you have been injured in a brake-check crash, it’s important to understand your legal options and seek professional assistance. Remember, evidence is key to establishing liability and holding the at-fault driver accountable. Stay safe on the roads and be aware of the dangers of aggressive driving practices like brake checking.