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T-Bone Accidents

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January 6, 2024 Car Accidents

Among the many types of vehicular accidents, t-bone accidents are some of the most common. These collisions can cause extensive property damage and injuries to everyone involved, especially victims on the side of the vehicle impacted.

If you’ve sustained injuries and losses in a t-bone accident, do not hesitate to seek legal representation from a qualified car accident lawyer. A lawyer can take over your claim to obtain the best possible case result.

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Denver t-bone accident lawyer

What is a T-Bone Accident?

T-bone accidents, also referred to as side-impact collisions, occur when the front of one driver’s vehicle crashes into the side of the other person’s vehicle. The impact can occur on either the driver or passenger side of the car.

The t-bone collision gets its name from how the vehicles look during impact. Similar to the look of a t-bone steak, the cars end up in a sort of “T” shape.

In many cases, t-bone accidents are preventable. Unfortunately, driver negligence is often the root cause of these collisions, and victim drivers must pay the price for another driver’s wrongdoing.

If you’re involved in a t-bone accident, it’s important to seek assistance from a car accident attorney. While every case is different, these types of collision cases can be challenging to navigate alone.

How Do T-Bone Collisions Happen?

Accidents happen for several reasons. However, t-bone accidents often happen due to dangerous or negligent driving behaviors. Some of the most common causes of these collisions include the following:

Running Red Lights

How Do T-Bone Collisions Happen I Running Red Lights One of the first lessons drivers get is what each color on a traffic light means. Green means go, yellow means slow down, and red means come to a complete stop. Many drivers choose to ignore red lights, daring to traverse the intersection, especially if the light has just turned.

Seeing a red light means the opposite traffic has the right of way. If a driver goes through the intersection, they can get hit on the side of their vehicle by oncoming traffic.

Failure to Stop at Stop Signs

Just like it is illegal to run a red light, it’s also illegal to run a stop sign. Many drivers see stop signs as mere suggestions. Seeing a stop sign means a driver must come to a complete stop, look every way, allow other drivers to cross according to their order of arrival, and then proceed.

Instead, drivers often make a “rolling stop,” meaning they don’t stop and look or fail to stop altogether. Running past a stop sign can be dangerous because other drivers may not see you. Failing to stop as indicated can easily cause a negligent driver to crash into the side of another vehicle or have someone crash into them.


Speeding is a substantial problem on roads across the country. It is a contributing factor in many collisions, including side-impact accidents.

When drivers speed, there are numerous consequences. Speeding:

  • Causes a greater potential for losing control of the vehicle
  • Increases stopping time and distance
  • Reduces the effectiveness of protective equipment, like airbags
  • Increases the severity of the impact

Unfortunately, when speeding is involved in a t-bone accident, injuries and property damage tend to be much worse.

Distracted Driving

Distractions are abundant while on the road. It’s up to drivers to avoid giving in to distractions and keep their eyes on the road, hands on the wheel, and minds and attention on the task at hand.

When drivers become distracted, they’re more likely to engage in risky driving behaviors, like speeding, following too closely, and weaving in and out of their lanes. Sometimes, drivers do this and other things without even noticing.

Distracted driving can result in a variety of different accidents, often including side-impact collisions.

Improper Turns

Regardless of the direction a person turns, they must look out for others, including drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists. Failure to do so can result in accidents of all kinds, including t-bone collisions.

When turning right, drivers must look out for traffic coming from the opposite direction, especially if they have a red light. Left turns are typically the most dangerous, as drivers must pay special attention to oncoming traffic.

During left turns, drivers have a duty to yield to oncoming vehicles unless they have a green arrow. A driver can only proceed once they’ve stopped and ensured it is safe to make the turn. Failing to stop and look can cause the turning driver to hit the side of an oncoming vehicle or the oncoming vehicle to hit the side of the turning car.

Impaired Driving

Driving while impaired is against the law in every state. When a person is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, it is nearly impossible to drive in the same capacity as a sober individual. Substances can seriously affect a person’s mind and body, causing impaired judgment, blurred vision, and sleepiness, among many other things.

When a driver is impaired, they are more likely to drive dangerously. Impaired driving significantly increases the chances of collisions, including t-bone accidents.

Road Rage

At some point or another, countless drivers experience road rage. Road rage generally refers to the anger and frustration a driver cannot control in difficult or stressful driving situations.

Road rage is particularly common during excessive road congestion. Drivers can become angered by the traffic, especially if they’re running late. This can cause drivers to engage in risky driving behaviors, endangering themselves and others on the road.

Road rage typically results in aggressive driving, but it may also lead to reckless driving. Reckless driving is particularly serious, as it entails driving in a manner that exhibits willful disregard for others’ safety. Reckless driving is typically illegal and can result in criminal and civil consequences.

Failure to Yield

Every state’s road laws detail situations where drivers must yield to other drivers and pedestrians. For example, drivers must yield to oncoming emergency vehicles, like police cars and fire trucks, and yield to pedestrians crossing the street.

When a driver fails to yield when the law requires it, they heighten the chances of causing an accident. This is especially true if you know the at-fault driver has a duty to yield, and you expect them to.

Common Negative Consequences of T-Bone Accidents

Like many other types of car accident situations, t-bone collisions can create much trouble and chaos, particularly for the victim driver.

Serious Injuries

First and foremost, a t-bone accident can result in extensive injuries to everyone involved, especially the individuals on the side of the vehicle that is impacted.

Some of the injuries accident victims can suffer include:

Not only are victims faced with the short-term struggles of their injuries, but they may also have to deal with long-term consequences. Certain serious injuries have the potential to worsen and lead to lasting effects. For example, a traumatic brain injury can leave a victim with cognitive issues, while a spinal cord injury can result in paralysis.

On top of the physical problems, injuries from t-bone accidents can also cause financial struggles. Getting the appropriate medical care can be particularly costly, and you may not have the means to cover all of your expenses. This is one of the reasons why seeking compensation becomes a priority for victims of t-bone collisions.

Vehicle Damage

T-bone accidents can cause extensive vehicle damage. Depending on the severity of the impact, your vehicle may be repairable. But in many cases, damage to vehicles is beyond repair, and the insurance company may deem your car a total loss.

Door Intrusion

Door Intrusion I T-Bone Accident

The sides of a vehicle, meaning the front and back doors, are often less reinforced than the front and rear of a car. For this reason, the impact of a t-bone collision can lead to door intrusion, causing doors to no longer function and open properly.

Victims of side-impact accidents may become trapped in the vehicle and require assistance. This can also cause more injury as victims try to find a way out of the car.

Property Damage

Not only do cars experience serious damage, but property and structures on roadways may also suffer damage. This includes nearby structures, traffic signs and lights, and guardrails, among other things.

Impacts on Daily Life

Simply put, suffering injuries in a car accident can negatively impact your health, well-being, and daily life. This is especially true if you suffer substantial injuries with long recovery times or the consequences of your injuries.

After a t-bone accident, you may have a difficult time getting back to life as usual. You may need to take time off of work due to your injuries, which also translates to more financial struggle. Your relationships may also suffer, and you might not have the ability to socialize and partake in activities like you once did.

Fortunately, you can pursue damages for these effects on your life, although money can only solve so many issues.

Mental and Emotional Effects

Your injuries may seriously impact your physical health, but they may also affect you mentally and emotionally.

It’s not uncommon for accident victims to develop unforeseen issues, like anxiety, depression, or even post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after an accident. Having to endure a long road to recovery can also have a severe influence on your mental and emotional health, whether in the short or long term.

Who’s Financially Responsible for My T-Bone Collision?

Generally, the person who causes a car accident is financially responsible to the victim. Nonetheless, while this may sound straightforward enough, it’s not always so easy to prove liability for t-bone accidents.

In many cases, fault for side-impact collisions can be tricky to establish. This is primarily because the finger is usually pointed at the driver who collides with the side of the other vehicle.

Fault is truly situational when it comes to t-bone accidents. In some cases, yes, liability lies with the driver who hits the side of the other driver’s car. Still, this isn’t always the case. Sometimes, the driver that runs into the other driver’s side is actually the victim.

For example, if a negligent driver runs a red light, a driver with the right of way may not see the driver in time and crash into the side of the vehicle. In this situation, the driver who ran the red light should be at fault, even though they were hit by another vehicle.

Determining fault is one of the most important parts of a t-bone accident case. Although difficult, a car accident attorney can take on the challenge and prove the other driver’s responsibility to continue your pursuit of fair financial recovery.

Proving Fault in a T-Bone Accident Case

Proving Fault in a T-Bone Accident Case

Most t-bone collisions are the result of driver negligence. To be negligent means a person has failed to behave with the same level of care that an individual in a similar situation should have behaved.

To establish the other driver’s fault, you must prove the following:

  • The other driver owed you a duty of care
  • Their wrongful actions caused them to breach their duty of care
  • Their breach of duty was the cause of your t-bone accident
  • As a result of your accident, you suffered injuries and related losses

Proving the other party’s negligence is one of the keys to unlocking favorable compensation. Your car accident lawyer can use pertinent evidence to strengthen your case, show the other party’s wrongdoing, and fight for justice.

Getting Help with Your T-Bone Collision Claim

Denver Car Accident Attorney, Keith Fuicelli

Keith Fuicelli, Car Accident Lawyer

T-bone accident claims can be tough to navigate on your own. When you want to ensure you’re giving yourself the best opportunity to reach a successful case outcome, get legal representation from an experienced car accident attorney.

A personal injury law firm in Denver can handle every case-related task on your behalf, including proving liability, calculating the value of your case, and settlement negotiations. Having a lawyer on your side can give you immense peace of mind and a fighting chance for a beneficial result.