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Understanding driver negligence

On Behalf of | Jun 13, 2023 | Car Accidents |

Anyone who operates a motor vehicle in Washington is legally required to abide by all traffic regulations while behind the wheel. However, many people do not take driving as seriously as they should, causing accidents and putting other motorists, passengers, and pedestrians at risk. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has reported that driver error contributed to or caused approximately 93 percent of motor vehicle accidents in the United States.

What does Washington law say?

In an at-fault state, such as Washington, when a driver fails to follow the law and causes an accident, they will likely be held liable for the accident due to their negligence and will be required to compensate any parties who suffered injuries or damages in then accident.

Here are a few examples of driver negligence:

  • Following too closely behind another vehicle.
  • Driving too fast for conditions.
  • Driving while impaired.
  • Driving while distracted.
  • Failing to stop at a stop sign.
  • Failing to yield the right-of-way.

Proving that another driver was negligent and that their negligence caused your car accident and injuries will require you to present evidence, including:

  • Police reports completed by an officer at the scene of the accident.
  • Eyewitness testimony.
  • Photographs and video footage of the accident and the resulting injuries/damages.
  • Expert testimony.

If you were also negligent, the court may reduce the amount in damages you recover based on your percentage of fault. However, as long as you are less than 100 percent at fault for the accident, you can still recover damages from the other at-fault party, under Washington’s comparative negligence law.