Imagine that you’re heading home from work, mentally running through the list of essentials you need to pick up. You’re passing through an intersection a block from the grocery store when a sudden impact wrenches your neck and sends your car flying. You’ve been T-boned. 

T-bone car accidents happen every day, usually at intersections. These accidents are also called side-impact collisions or broadside collisions. They’re often the result of distracted or reckless driving and have a high risk of injury and death. 

If you’ve been involved in a T-bone accident, it’s essential to protect yourself by making sure the fault has been properly assigned to the responsible driver. Here’s what you should know about how T-bone accidents happen and how to tell which driver is at fault. 

Left-Turn T-Bone Accidents

A T-bone car accident poses a high fatality risk, which is why car manufacturers must follow strict testing requirements for side-impact safety. Left turns are one of the leading causes of this type of accident. They usually happen when two drivers heading in opposite directions both have a green light.

The driver attempting to make a left turn must yield to oncoming traffic or wait until a green arrow gives them the right-of-way. In a T-bone incident, a driver might risk making the turn and misjudge the speed of oncoming traffic.

There’s also a high risk of a left-turn T-bone when the turning driver needs to make a U-turn or enter a driveway or parking lot. When there’s no traffic light present, it can be tempting for a driver to get tired of waiting and unsafely jump at an opening to turn.  

The turning driver generally causes a left-turn T-bone. If the driver making the left turn was obliged to yield, they’re the at-fault driver. However, if they had a green arrow, the fault would probably fall upon the other driver. 

T-Bones Caused by Illegal Actions

Illegal actions are another leading cause of T-bone car accidents. These happen when one driver is clearly breaking the law. Running a red light, failing to stop at a stop sign, or not yielding at a roundabout are all common situations that lead to a T-bone accident. 

In these cases, a driver may be recklessly speeding to make it through a yellow light, driving under the influence, or distracted by a cell phone. 

The fault for a T-bone nearly always falls upon the driver who was acting illegally. T-bone accidents are most often the result of reckless or distracted driving. Which driver made impact matters less than the question of which driver had the right-of-way and which had an obligation to yield.

Understanding Car Accident Fault

It’s not uncommon for the drivers involved in a car accident to disagree over who caused the accident. And they have good cause — whoever is found to be at fault faces a lengthy list of consequences. 

Causing a T-bone accident can leave you with marks against your record, tickets, fines, and increased insurance rates. Most seriously, it puts you at risk of being sued by the other driver. 

Every driver on the road has a duty of care toward others. For drivers, this legal concept generally means driving safely, carefully, and according to the rules of the road. A driver who isn’t paying attention, for example, is considered to have breached the duty of care — and that’s a big problem. 

Breaching this duty of care makes a driver legally and financially responsible for the consequences of their actions — including medical bills, lifetime earnings, and quality of life of the injured party. Being found at fault in a serious accident can bring life-altering consequences. 

If you’ve been involved in a T-bone accident, you can protect yourself by making smart decisions afterward. Don’t admit fault, don’t speak with an insurance company, and consult with a car accident attorney before you take action.  

Contact the Tampa Car Accident Law Firm of Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers for Help Today

For more information, please contact the legal team of Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers for a free initial consultation with a car accident lawyer in Tampa. We have four convenient locations in Florida: Clearwater, New Port Richey, and Tampa.

We serve throughout Pinellas County, Hillsborough County, Pasco County, and its surrounding areas:

Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers – Clearwater Office
1811 N. Belcher Road, Suite I-1
Clearwater, FL 33765
(727) 787-2500

Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers – Congress Ave Office
2360 Congress Avenue
Clearwater, FL 33763
(727) 591-5610

Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers – Tampa Office
6601 Memorial Hwy Suite 202
Tampa, FL 33615
(813) 686-7588

Roman Austin Personal Injury Lawyers – New Port Richey Office
2515 Seven Springs Blvd.
New Port Richey, FL, 34655
(727) 815-8442