Victim of Road Rage? You Don’t Have to Take It Lying Down
- Dan T. Matrafajlo
- Fri Sep 2017
- Personal Injury,
Any accident that causes injuries is scary enough. However, imagine this scenario. You’re heading down Routes 1 and 9, when a sports car jumps in front of you. You sigh deeply and change lanes. To your surprise, the driver cuts you off again. Suddenly, you find yourself in a bad accident with severe injuries. You’ve heard of road rage before and realize that the term accurately describes what just happened to you. What should you do?
First, you might find this of interest. According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, eighty percent of drivers have expressed significant anger, aggression or road rage behind the wheel at least once in the past year. Of course, if you’re the one that has been injured because of road rage, those numbers may not surprise you.
We’ve all seen what the road can do to people. At some point, many drivers appoint themselves kings of the road and react aggressively when their fellow motorists don’t bend to their will. Whether it’s traffic, the length of their daily commute, their jobs or anything else, aggressive drivers commonly let other areas of their lives impact their behavior on the road.
When anger and bad driving graduates to road rage, other drivers, and vehicle occupants are put at serious risk. When the result causes broken bones or other serious harm, road rage victims should consider consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney.
No Explanation Is Good Enough
In 2015, New Jersey State Police received 26, 417 calls for aggressive driving and road rage. Some encounter road rage on major toll roads like the Garden State Parkway and New Jersey Turnpike. However, that’s not to say you can’t become a victim of road rage on Route 22 or even Morris Avenue in Union County.
The bottom line is that drivers depend on their cars to work and get around. Impatience is certainly not an excuse for bad driving. Nonetheless, some people attempt to justify their actions, which are often akin to temper tantrums.
These excuses mean nothing, however, to the individual who has been rear-ended and permanently injured because a driver couldn’t keep their emotions in check. Sadly, road rage can even cause someone to use a weapon in response to their dissatisfaction with another driver.
Long-Term Effects of Road Rage
You may already know it. Road rage incidents can very easily lead to serious physical or psychological injuries. New Jersey even passed a specific law against road rage after a 16-year-old from Mercer County was paralyzed from the waist down in a road rage accident. The law imposes a three- to five-year prison term and a maximum fine of $15,000 for serious injuries caused by aggressive-driving crashes. The law is named after a young woman named Jessica, who points out that the defendant’s sentence is nothing compared to the life sentence she received.
The penalties for road rage are one thing. However, the cost of medical treatment and life changing events often merit a civil case against the party who caused the injuries. For this reason, it is important to retain an experienced personal injury attorney to determine your rights to claim damages.
Are You the Victim of Road Rage?
It’s easy to feel scared or disempowered if you’re a victim of road rage. Unfortunately, you may have even suffered permanent injuries as a result of someone else’s temper. The attorneys at Beninato and Matrafajlo can investigate the circumstances of your accident and determine if you have a case. If you’ve been injured in a road rage incident, contact us today.