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T-bone Collisions


Personal Injury

The Gainesville attorneys of the Law Office of Alba & Yochim P.A. represent the victims of accidents involving T-bone collisions, also referred to as broadside, side-impact, or right-angle crashes. The aftermath of a T-bone collision, in which a vehicle headed north or south, collides with the middle portion of another vehicle that is traveling east or west (or vice versa), is often associated with the most tragic of outcomes.

Regardless of who is at fault, consider solely the nature of the impact from both perspectives—one car is struck from the side, and the other is colliding head-on. Consequently, the occupants of both vehicles in right-angle crashes are at great risk for serious injury or fatality.

T-bone accident occur most commonly at intersections. Intersection crashes are a huge problem in Florida, both at intersections with traffic devices (signalized), and those without (unsignalized). Right-angle crashes at signalized intersections frequently occur as a result of a motorist’s failure to stop at a red light. In many cases, a driver will accelerate their traveling speed, in an attempt to run a red light, which can greatly increase the severity of the impact, as well as the injuries sustained by vehicle occupants.

With regard to unsignalized intersections, side-impact collisions are often associated with one vehicle’s failure to yield the right of way to another vehicle, such as when a vehicle is turning to enter or exit a roadway, or attempting to make a U-turn.

According to the Florida Department of Transportation, an estimated 95% of fatal angle-crashes occur at intersections. When this figure is broken down by intersection type, 53% of fatal angle crashes occur at unsignalized intersections, and 42% occur at signalized intersections.

What this data demonstrates is that there is a substantial risk of fatality when a T-bone collision that occurs at an intersection, regardless of whether a traffic device is present. Perhaps even more significant, is the potential for serious injury or fatality in motorcycle accidents involving a right-angle impact occurring at an intersection. This same risk also extends to other vulnerable road users, such as victim fatalities caused due to scooter and moped accidents.

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There are a variety of factors that can affect the resulting outcome, in terms of extent of injury, in a right-angle collision. The speed at which each vehicle is traveling at the time of impact, as well as the weight, size, and type of vehicles involved in the crash, particularly in comparison with one another, are equally important considerations in T-bone collisions. These two factors—speed and vehicle type—when combined, play a critical role in both the force of the collision, as well as the manner in which each vehicle responds as a result of the crash. Additional factors in side-angle crashes include the point of impact, position of vehicle occupants, seatbelt use, as well as whether the vehicle was equipped with airbags, and whether the airbags deployed.

Depending on the above-stated factors, there are several consequences that can occur as a result of a right-angle crash. For example, the impact can cause the vehicle that was struck to begin rotating, and in some collisions, can even cause a vehicle to roll-over. Additional safety considerations, such as the risk of subsequent collision with another vehicle, can arise when a vehicle rotates or rolls. Further, vulnerable road users that are nearby at the time of the collision, especially pedestrians and bicyclists, are at risk for severe injury or fatality, in the event they are struck by a rotating or rolling vehicle following a T-bone collision.

T-bone collisions, in which the vehicle that was hit, neither rolls nor rotates, are often the most devastating of all. In some cases, a direct center impact can cause one vehicle to wrap-around the other, or both vehicles to entangle with one another. In other cases, such as where a vehicle is broadsided by a much a larger vehicle, the impact can result in the smaller vehicle being pummeled, crushed, or otherwise completely destroyed. This type of massive destruction is often associated with trucking collisions and bus accidents.

If you sustained serious injury, or a loved one was killed as a result of a side-impact, T-bone, or right-angle collision, it is important that you discuss the matter with an experienced attorney, who can explain your legal rights and options associated with potential entitlement to compensation. During your free consultation, the Gainesville accident & injury team of the Law Office of Alba & Yochim P.A. will assess your matter and discuss any issues of concern, whether regarding fault and liability; insurance coverage; vehicle repair and related compensation (i.e property damage claims and rental reimbursement);  medical expenses and treatment; or the types of damages recoverable.