Recklessness and anger increase the risk of Oklahoma car accidents.
When you encounter aggressive driving or road rage on an Oklahoma roadway, you are probably not too concerned with the differences between the two. You simply realize that you are in danger, both because of erratic, risky driving, and the fact that this person might be capable of assault. Unfortunately, statistics indicate that your chances of coming across recklessness are high. According to The Zebra, an online auto insurance marketplace, 82% of motorists admit that they committed an act of road rage at least once in the last 12 months. Plus, approximately 66% of traffic fatalities are caused by aggressive driving.
It is encouraging to know that the distinction between aggressive driving and road rage will likely not impact your legal rights. You will need to prove that the at-fault driver failed to exercise reasonable care. Evidence of misconduct is powerful, and your Tulsa reckless driving accident lawyer will assist with collecting important details. Some background information and tips are also useful.
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Comparing Aggressive Driving and Road Rage
Under Oklahoma traffic laws, reckless driving is operating a vehicle in a careless or wanton manner, disregarding the safety of others. Aggressive driving and road rage fall under this definition, so either of these acts could lead to jail time and a fine. They are distinct, however:
- Aggressive driving might include cutting someone off, excessive speed, and erratic lane changes. These are acts that are part of operating the vehicle, even though they are dangerous.
- Road rage is reactionary in most cases. It may involve obscene gestures, yelling, cursing, and making threats, which are far beyond the operating of the vehicle.
Compensation in Reckless Driving Cases
Monetary damages in car accident claims are to reimburse the victim for economic losses, as well as to make up for the pain and suffering caused by the injuries. When aggressive driving or road rash was the cause of the crash, you may qualify for punitive damages. These are amounts intended to punish the offender for such extreme, offensive misconduct. There are strict rules about awarding punitive damages, but it may be possible to recover up to twice the amount of your compensatory damages.
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Tips for Addressing Difficult Drivers
The primary recommendation is just to get safely away from a motorist when you encounter aggressive driving or road rage.
- Do not make eye contact with the motorist.
- Avoid reacting to the aggression, such as giving your own gesture or shouting back.
- Focus on safely driving your vehicle.
- Do not challenge another driver even when you have the right of way.
- If followed or harassed, make your way to the closest police station, fire department, or other public space where you can get help.
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Discuss Your Rights with a Tulsa, OK Reckless Driving Accidents Attorney
To learn more about your legal remedies, please contact Boettcher, Devinney, Ingle & Wicker. We can schedule a no-cost consultation with an Oklahoma car accident lawyer who will advise you on strategies for aggressive driving and road rage crashes.
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