Reckless driving is a crime in Texas because it puts everyone on the road at risk of being injured in an accident. Many reckless driving accidents involve speeding, intoxicated driving, and other seriously dangerous driving practices. As a result, the collisions caused by reckless driving can cause some of the most devastating injuries, including brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and internal organ injuries.
If you or your loved one in Houston have been seriously injured in a reckless driving accident, it’s crucial that you discuss your case with an attorney as soon as possible. You may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, property damage, lost income, and other damages. When you work with Ceja Law Firm PLLC, you can rest assured that we will carefully investigate your case and negotiate the best outcome possible. Contact Ceja Law Firm PLLC to schedule a free case evaluation and learn more about how we can advocate for you.
Types of Reckless Driving in Texas We Handle
The Texas criminal code defines reckless driving as “operating a vehicle with willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property”. Some states have specific statutes against aggressive driving, but Texas does not. Drivers who engage in aggressive driving, such as tailgating and speeding, can be charged with reckless driving.
Reckless driving accidents can happen nearly anywhere, including on roads, highways, garages, and parking lots. It is even more prevalent in highly dense urban areas like Houston. The attorneys at Ceja Law Firm PLLC represent clients throughout Houston and Texas who’ve been injured in a wide range of reckless driving cases, including, but not limited to, the following:
- Street racing
- Evading the police
- Driving too fast for road conditions
- Weaving in and out of traffic
- Driving while intoxicated by drugs or alcohol
- Ignoring traffic signs, including stop signs and traffic lights
- Running a red light
- Intentionally hitting another pedestrian, bicyclist, or motorist
- Road rage
- Rapid lane changes
The Difference Between Negligent and Reckless Driving
Reckless driving happens when a driver operates a vehicle in such a willful way as to disregard the safety of other people or property completely. Proving recklessness can be more challenging than proving negligence. Negligence involves the failure to use reasonable care under the circumstances. Reckless driving involves a reckless disregard for others’ safety. A reckless driver understands the dangerous risks associated with their behavior but chooses to do it anyway.
Reckless Driving Criminal Charges vs. a Personal Injury Claim
In Texas, negligent driving practices such as texting and driving are considered traffic offenses. On the other hand, reckless driving is considered a crime. The driver who caused your accident may be facing criminal charges for reckless driving. Whether or not the at-fault driver is convicted of a crime in Texas, you still have the right to pursue a personal injury lawsuit in a civil court. The process of obtaining damages through a personal injury lawsuit is completely separate from the criminal justice system.
Why is Aggressive Driving So Dangerous?
Reckless driving can be more dangerous than other types of negligent driving because the driver intentionally puts others in danger. Speeding is one of the most common examples of reckless driving and endangers everyone on the road. In 2020, drivers who were speeding killed 11,258 people. That year, speeding contributed to 29 percent of traffic fatalities. The consequences of reckless driving can include the following:
- Greater potential for the driver to lose control of the vehicle and cause a collision
- Protection equipment can become less effective
- It may take a driver longer to stop after he or she perceives danger
- Increased degree of the severity of injuries due to the force of the accident
- Less ability to identify potential dangers on the road and respond accordingly
Injuries Caused By Reckless Driving Accidents
Speeding, street racing, and other types of reckless driving are hazardous behaviors and should not be engaged in at all. The attorneys at Ceja Law Firm PLLC have witnessed the devastating effects of reckless driving on Houston victims and their family members. We frequently meet with reckless driving victims and their families and see how their lives have been shattered because of a serious injury or the loss of a loved one.
Reckless driving accidents can cause catastrophic injuries that require a lifetime of ongoing medical treatment. In some cases, victims require daily professional care. Some of the most common injuries experienced by victims of reckless driving include the following:
- Loss of limb
- Crush injuries
- Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
- Internal organ injuries
- Severe burns
- Bone fractures
Damages Available in Reckless Driving Claims
If you’ve suffered any type of injuries, losses, or damages resulting from a car accident in Houston caused by reckless driving, you can pursue compensation. Under Texas law, victims of car accidents have a right to file a claim for compensation through the at-fault driver’s insurance company. If the at-fault driver does not have car insurance or doesn’t have enough car insurance to cover your damages, you may be able to recover through an uninsured driver’s claim with your own insurance policy.
Alternatively, victims can pursue compensation through a personal injury lawsuit in a civil court. As the person pursuing damages, also called the plaintiff, you can pursue economic and non-economic damages. Specifically, you can pursue compensation for your current and future medical expenses, property damage to your vehicle, and lost wages due to your inability to work. You can also pursue compensation for your loss of future earnings due to being disabled after the accident and for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering.
Have You Been Injured in a Houston Reckless Driving Accident? We Can Help
As the victim of a reckless driver, you may have a legal right to pursue compensation for the injuries you’ve suffered. The experienced Houston car accident attorneys at Ceja Law Firm PLLC have a proven track record of successfully obtaining compensation for car accident victims. We know how to hold reckless drivers accountable for the injuries they caused. Whether you pursue an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit, we will fight for you to receive fair compensation. Contact Ceja Law Firm PLLC to schedule a complimentary, no-obligation consultation.