Brake checking is not just a reckless act. It is a deliberate move that puts multiple lives in danger. In Illinois, where bustling highways like I-55 and I-290 witness daily traffic, actions such as brake checking can have catastrophic consequences.
Understanding the implications of brake checking from a safety and legal standpoint is essential. An Illinois car accident attorney can protect your rights if you were the victim of a brake checking incident.
What is Brake Checking?
At its core, brake checking involves a driver intentionally slamming their brakes unexpectedly. This forces the driver behind them to react abruptly, often to avert a crash.
Typically rooted in frustration or anger, this maneuver is commonly aimed at drivers perceived as following too closely. But what might begin as an impulsive move to "communicate" discontent can spiral into a dangerous situation.
Illinois Roads and Brake Checking Incidents
Given the dense traffic on many of Illinois's key highways and roads, brake checking can be even more dangerous. Drivers are navigating congested areas, changing lanes, and watching for sudden stops due to traffic conditions.
Having to worry about brake checking can be a recipe for disaster. The act can quickly cause catastrophe, leading to multi-car pile-ups or severe rear-end collisions.
The Legal Stance on Brake Checking in Illinois
Illinois does not have a law labeled "no brake checking." However, brake checking can be categorized under different state traffic violations. These include:
Reckless Driving: Illinois Vehicle Code 625 ILCS 5/11-503 considers driving with deliberate or heedless disregard for safety as reckless driving. Brake checking often meets this criterion, given it is a deliberate or selfish act that shows a disregard for the safety of other drivers.
Aggressive Driving: A series of traffic violations that imperil other persons or property can be categorized as aggressive driving. If brake checking is coupled with other hostile actions on the road, it increases the likelihood that a driver will be charged.
Who is Liable for Damages in a Brake Checking Accident?
Rear-end collisions often place the blame on the rear driver. However, brake checking complicates this notion. If evidence shows that brake checking caused a crash, the driver in front may bear full or partial liability. This is because they intentionally created the hazardous situation that caused the accident.
Illinois is a "fault" state when it comes to auto accidents. This means that the person deemed to be at fault for the accident is responsible for paying the damages. To establish fault, accident victims must preserve evidence.
The following evidence can be crucial for establishing liability:
- Eyewitness Accounts: This includes statements from other drivers, passengers, or pedestrians. Get names and contact information from all witnesses.
- Video Documentation: Dashcams are increasingly common. Dashcam footage can offer an unbiased account of the incident and circumstances surrounding sudden braking. If you do not have a dashcam, traffic or security cameras from nearby businesses may also have captured the event.
- Expert Analysis: Specialists in accident reconstruction can recreate the sequence of an accident. Expert analysis can help support claims of brake checking.
Always ensure the scene is safe before taking time to collect evidence or talk with witnesses. Seek prompt medical treatment if your injuries require you to do so. A car accident attorney can review any evidence you have. They will play an important part in helping you develop a compelling case that supports your version of events and your injuries.
Claimable Damages in an Illinois Rear-End Accident Claim
You may suffer tangible and intangible losses if you are the unfortunate victim of a brake checking incident in Illinois.
Common injuries associated with brake check accidents include whiplash and soft tissue injuries. In severe cases, spinal cord injuries and internal organ damage are also common. Regardless of severity, you are entitled to compensation for your damages.
Several damages might be claimable, including:
- Medical Costs: This encompasses immediate medical bills and projected future expenses. Bills for ambulances, emergency room stays, diagnostic testing, prescriptions, and physical therapy can easily cost thousands of dollars.
- Lost Income: Severe injuries may require you to miss work. Lost income compensation reimburses you for wages lost from days you missed work due to injury or medical appointments.
- Property Repairs: Brake checking accidents damage vehicles and other property. The at-fault party will be liable for vehicle repair or replacement costs.
- Pain and Emotional Trauma: Beyond tangible costs, victims of brake checking can claim damages for the physical and emotional trauma they endured.
An experienced personal injury attorney can help you recover these and any other damages you’ve sustained.
How Can an Illinois Personal Injury Attorney Help After a Car Accident Caused By Brake Checking?
Navigating the aftermath of a brake checking incident is challenging. A car accident attorney plays an important role in understanding the complexities of your case. This includes proving liability and damages.
Additionally, they will have knowledge of local regulations and traffic laws. They will also be able to craft effective legal strategies to advance your case in negotiations or in court.
Importantly, car accident attorneys know how to compile and review compelling evidence. They can value your case and advance your interests in negotiation, ensuring favorable outcomes for their clients.
Personal injury attorneys are not just legal representatives but dedicated allies determined to pursue justice and guide you toward resolution. The goal is to make you whole again after an accident through monetary compensation.
Our car accident attorneys have experience in supporting victims of brake checking accidents in Illinois and getting them the compensation they deserve.
Consult an Illinois Car Accident Attorney After a Rear-End Crash Caused By Brake Checking
Brake checking may seem like a fleeting lapse in judgment, but it has potentially deadly consequences, particularly on busy Illinois roads.
Victims of brake checking often grapple with physical injuries, emotional trauma, and financial burdens. Nearly all want compensation for this harm.
Experienced car accident attorneys can help you by strategically evaluating your case, crafting legal arguments, and zealously representing you in negotiations an