Types of Car Accidents in Houston
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Driving on Houston’s super-sized highways can be challenging for both residents and visitors. The confusing roads and intersections make it likely for motorists to miss exits and make wrong turns, increasing the possibility of crashes. Additionally, Houston highways are often characterized by horrible traffic, aggressive drivers, constructions and roadblocks, and bad weather — all of which contribute to frequent vehicular accidents.
Like other crash types, car accidents can have devastating effects on the victims, such as painful injuries, psychological damage, trauma, possibly permanent disability, and financial stress. At Johnson Garcia, we have the needs of Houston car accident victims at heart. We strive to help them get the support they need while recovering and securing their futures by holding negligent drivers responsible for their reckless behavior.
Our Houston car accident lawyers have over 35 years of experience handling collision cases. Our legal team is well-equipped to identify possible avenues for obtaining a settlement or court award for your losses. We put all our efforts and resources into your case to help you get back on your feet, even if it means taking your case to trial. Call 832-844-6700 now to get started with your injury claim by scheduling a 100% free consultation.
But first, let’s find out the common types of car accidents in Houston, TX, that our lawyers handle.
Head-on collisions are some of the most common accidents, and they happen when the front ends of two cars collide. Unlike other accidents, the impact of head-on collisions doubles due to the vehicles’ traveling speeds. These accidents often lead to catastrophic injuries due to the greater impact of the collision.
Suppose you’re driving on Wayside Drive in Houston at 40 mph. Another driver traveling at 50 mph in the opposite lane crosses the centerline in a careless attempt to overtake and collides with your car. The impact of this collision will be like hitting a solid wall at 90 mph, which can cause severe or even fatal injuries.
Head-on crashes happen due to driver error or defective road design. Drivers who speed around curves or overtake carelessly on single-lane roads are more likely to cause head-on collisions. Similarly, these car accident types are common on poorly designed roads, such as those lacking median barriers.
Rollover accidents in Houston happen when there is a sudden shift in a vehicle’s center of gravity, causing the vehicle to flip on its side or upside down. Rollover accidents can be categorized into tripped and untripped rollovers. Tripped rollover accidents occur when an external force causes a car to flip over. Some of the common scenarios that may lead to tripped rollover accidents include:
- Tripping over curbs or medians
- Striking guardrails and barriers
- Veering off the road onto a soft shoulder or ditch
- Hitting a pothole
- Encountering an uneven road section
- Tripping over debris
- Tire blowouts
- Side impact from another vehicle
On the other hand, untripped rollover accidents occur when the vehicle’s movements cause a sudden shift in its center of gravity, causing it to flip over. These accidents are common when a driver swerves suddenly to avoid an obstacle or make a turn, especially while speeding. In such cases, the driver loses control of the vehicle, which may cause it to roll over.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, approximately 191 traffic crashes were attributed to reckless driving in 2022. Of these, ten were fatal, resulting in 11 fatalities. Also, there were 99 injuries due to crashes resulting from reckless driving.
Section 545.401 of the Texas Transportation Code defines reckless driving as when a “person drives a vehicle in wilful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property.” Some forms of reckless driving include:
- Ignoring traffic signs and lights, police roadblocks, and clear police direction
- Excessive speeding at intersections, sharp bends, or where there is emerging traffic
- Overtaking on sharp bends
- Ignoring a red light
These accidents result in severe jerks to the heads of car occupants during crashes. Rear-end and front-impact collisions result in the sudden backward and forward movement of the head with great force, similar to the cracking of a whip. Whiplash accident victims may suffer neck injuries, which result in symptoms such as neck pain and stiffness, headaches, tenderness in the upper back, and loss of range of neck motion.
Multiple Vehicle Collision
These collisions involving three or more vehicles often occur on freeways and crowded highways. These types of car accidents in Houston may also involve a series of accidents ending in a pile-up. Some of the common causes of these accidents include:
- Poor weather conditions
- Drunk driving
- Reckless driving
Determining Fault After a Multiple Vehicle Collision
Determining fault in a multiple-vehicle crash is more complicated than in accidents involving one or two vehicles. Usually, the responding law enforcement officers collect admissible evidence, such as:
- Witness interviews
- Dashcam and smartphone footage
- Photographs of vehicle damage
- CCTV footage
Authorities may piece together the events leading to the accident using this information. That way, they may discover what or who caused the chain of events in the accident.
Consider the following scenario: Four vehicles are traveling in the same direction on a single-lane road. Car A brakes abruptly to avoid a fallen tree on the road. Car B, which is close behind, rear-ends car A. Car C, also closely following car B, inevitably slams into its rear.
In this case, cars B and C failed to maintain a safe distance and couldn’t stop in time. The three drivers share fault in the accident, and driver A may not be at fault.
Texas applies the modified comparative negligence rule in multiple-vehicle accidents, allowing victims to receive compensation even if they were proportionately responsible for the accident.
These accidents occur when a driver hits a vehicle, a person, another’s personal property, or even an animal and then flees from the accident scene without calling the local authorities. Hit-and-run accidents cause more than just property damage; they constitute a significant portion of driver, cyclist, and pedestrian fatalities.
Your Options After a Hit-and-Run Accident
If you have been involved in a hit-and-run accident, it is advisable to follow the proper procedures by doing the following:
- Safely pulling over as soon as you can.
- Assessing the damage to whatever you hit and your vehicle.
- Calling 911 immediately to send emergency medical responders and police to the scene.
- Taking photos of the damage from the accident.
- Noting all the accident details, such as the license plate number, make, and model of the car that hit you.
- File an incident report with the local authorities and your insurance agent.
Fleeing the scene can have serious legal implications. It is important to remain at the scene until issues are properly resolved to minimize your legal liability.
Motorists who regularly drive in heavy commuter traffic on busy highways are at a greater risk of getting involved in a rear-end collision. These types of car accidents mostly occur due to speeding in heavy traffic, driving aggressively, tailgating, driver inattention, and inclement weather. Further, rear-end collision accidents mainly occur in areas such as:
- Intersections with traffic signals and stoplights
- Congested or stop-and-go traffic
- Merge points and on-ramps
- Parking lots
- School zones
- Highway exits
T-bone collisions, also known as lateral impact, broadside, or side-impact accidents, happen when a car crashes into the side of another vehicle. Aggressive, distracted, or intoxicated drivers who fail to yield the right of way at intersections are primarily to blame for T-bone accidents. Since vehicle occupants are so close to the door frame, there is a higher risk of suffering serious injuries due to the lateral impact of the collision.
Get Sound Legal Help After a Houston Car Accident
It’s normal to feel stuck after being involved in any type of Houston auto accident, but it shouldn’t always be that way. Seeking legal counsel after an accident in Houston can help you avoid common pitfalls and protect your right to receive compensation for your losses.
At Johnson Garcia, we take an aggressive approach to every car accident case we handle. Our attorneys will investigate and build a strong case that will stand even in trial, which gives us a strong negotiating position with the involved insurance companies. That also prepares us to head to court to advocate on your behalf if the other party isn’t negotiating fairly.
When you work with the Johnson Garcia legal team, you can rest assured that we will fight until you get the compensation you deserve, no matter what. Contact us today to schedule a free case review, or call 832-844-6700 to get started.