An automobile is an important tool, but it can also be a dangerous weapon. Fortunately, most people do not intend to hurt others with their vehicles. New York car accident attorneys know, however, that road rage can be dangerous, not just to the people involved in the altercation but to others on the roadway. When people think of road rage, they may think of yelling or a driver exiting a vehicle to assault someone. Some drivers, however, may use the vehicle itself to attack.
An alleged road rage incident has recently resulted in a crushed motorcycle and an arrest. According to reports, the SUV driver and the motorcyclist got into a verbal dispute over their driving. The incident reportedly occurred over 40 city blocks. The driver allegedly told reporters that he ran over the motorcycle because he was afraid the motorcyclist would damage his vehicle. Photos show the motorcycle completely under the SUV. The driver was reportedly arrested and charged with serious injury with a weapon, criminal mischief, menacing, reckless endangerment, and reckless driving. The motorcyclist was reportedly taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. It is unclear who started the altercation, but both men are suffering serious consequences as a result of the incident.
The Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee (GTSC) provides some tips on how to avoid becoming involved in either an aggressive driving incident or a road rage incident. The New York State Police distinguish between aggressive driving and road rage. Aggressive driving includes things like tailgating and flashing headlights. Road rage is more serious and includes actions like using a vehicle as a weapon or assaulting another driver.
To avoid both aggression and road rage, the GTSC recommends avoiding actions that are likely to provoke aggression. Drivers should avoid making rude gestures, being distracted by electronic devices, making eye contact with someone behaving aggressively, tailgating, aggressive horn use, or aggressive headlight use. They also recommend that drivers reduce their own stress. They recommend maintaining a polite and positive attitude that gives the other driver the benefit of the doubt. Additionally, they recommend maintaining self-control and thinking before acting. They suggest avoiding conflict and considering the possible consequences of any actions.
As this incident shows, road rage can result in criminal charges. However, it is important to remember that it can also result in serious injuries, not just to the aggressor or the target of the rage but to anyone on or near the roadway. A collision could result in a chain reaction accident or send a vehicle flying into a crosswalk or sidewalk, where pedestrians could be seriously injured or killed. A person intentionally using a vehicle as a weapon will likely be held liable for all of the resulting injuries.
If you have been injured due to someone else’s road rage, a skilled New York motorcycle accident attorney can fight for you. Call the Law Offices of Marc S. Albert at 1.855.252.3788 to discuss your case.
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