Side Collision blue and red cars

T-Bone car accidents, sometimes also referred to as broadside collisions or right angle collisions, are often the costliest collisions both in terms of personal injury, and property damage. Understanding why T-bone car accidents occur and how fault is determined is the first step to protecting yourself following a collision.

What are T-bone accidents?

T-bone accidents occur when the front or back of one vehicle hits the side of another. They are generally one of the most dangerous types of accidents, but the severity is determined by the speed at which the vehicle is struck, the size of the vehicles involved, and other factors.

Often the crumple zone of the striking vehicle will absorb some of the shock, but there is considerably less crumple zone on the sides of vehicles compared to the front. Many modern cars have side airbags, but not all, and few older models have side airbags. It is not uncommon for the struck vehicle to flip, roll, slide, skid or swerve after the initial collision causing further damage to the vehicle and pedestrians, other vehicles, or objects around it.

Often the passengers in a vehicle which is struck on its side suffer far worse injuries than those in the striking vehicle. Add to this the fact that T-bone car accidents often occur by a failure to yield, failure to obey traffic signals, and other traffic code violations and you may have a strong case for compensation if you have been in a T-bone car accident.

Fault in T-bone Car Accidents

Imagine that you were driving along, going through an intersection when, out of nowhere, a car ran a red light and struck the side of your vehicle. In this case the other driver would mostly likely be at fault. Alternatively, maybe you were driving along, obeying all traffic laws, and out of nowhere a vehicle cut in front of you, giving you no time to stop. You may be the striking vehicle, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that all – or any – fault lies with you.

Fault is not always easy to determine in T-bone car accidents. In some cases a faulty traffic signal can lead to a broadside car accident, and if your lawyer can prove that this was the case you may not be as liable as you first think. Maybe the light changed quickly, but your breaks failed, causing you to enter the intersection unable to stop or swerve in time to avoid a collision. In such a situation your mechanic, car manufacturer, or vehicle parts manufacturer could be more at fault than you.

What to do after T-bone car accidents

Whether you were the striking vehicle or the struck vehicle, your first call after emergency services should be to a law firm that knows how to handle T-bone car accidents. Due to the fact that T-bone car accidents are generally more deadly and damaging, you could be on the hook for a sizeable chunk of money unless you hire a lawyer who can argue your case effectively.