Reckless driving often times leads to serious car accidents. In an auto accident, evidence that one driver was violating a rule of the road is often used to support a determination of who is at fault for the accident and is often considered to be reckless driving. However, every driver, even when obeying all rules of the road, is required to exercise due care and caution when driving. This requirement can see a driver who has obeyed all traffic laws to still be the cause of an accident. An example of this is reckless driving. While the law provides that driving in excess of the speed limit is evidence that the driver was driving recklessly, if another driver was not exercising due care, both drivers can be found to be at fault for a resulting accident.
What is Considered to be Reckless Driving?
Here are some driving habits that are considered to be reckless driving in most states:
- Driving 25 mph over the posted speed limit.
- Attempting to elude a police officer.
- Racing another vehicle.
- Passing another vehicle on a two-lane highway when visibility of oncoming traffic is limited.
Reckless driving is an offense in which the driver could be sited for as a traffic offense. When someone is cited for a traffic offense they have usually shown some kind of disregard for the rules of the road or may have caused a car accident.
In Washington, the operation of a vehicle in a way that shows a willful or wanton disregard for the safety of others can be arrested for reckless driving. Activities like street racing and erratic driving can lead to a reckless driving charge. In addition to being a gross misdemeanor, with jail time up to 364 days and up to a $5,000 fine and license suspension, reckless driving poses serious risk to other drivers on the road and passengers.
The following are the Washington Rules of the Road for reckless driving.
RCW 46.61.500: Reckless driving—Penalty.
(1) Any person who drives any vehicle in willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property is guilty of reckless driving. Violation of the provisions of this section is a gross misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for up to three hundred sixty-four days and by a fine of not more than five thousand dollars.
(2)(a) Subject to (b) of this subsection, the license or permit to drive or any nonresident privilege of any person convicted of reckless driving shall be suspended by the department for not less than thirty days.
(b) When a reckless driving conviction is a result of a charge that was originally filed as a violation of RCW 46.61.502 or 46.61.504, or an equivalent local ordinance, the department shall grant credit on a day-for-day basis for any portion of a suspension, revocation, or denial already served under an administrative action arising out of the same incident. During any period of suspension, revocation, or denial due to a conviction for reckless driving as the result of a charge originally filed as a violation of RCW 46.61.502 or 46.61.504, any person who has obtained an ignition interlock driver’s license under RCW 46.20.385 may continue to drive a motor vehicle pursuant to the provision of the ignition interlock driver’s license without obtaining a separate temporary restricted driver’s license under RCW 46.20.391.
(3)(a) Except as provided under (b) of this subsection, a person convicted of reckless driving who has one or more prior offenses as defined in RCW 46.61.5055(14) within seven years shall be required, under RCW 46.20.720, to install an ignition interlock device on all vehicles operated by the person if the conviction is the result of a charge that was originally filed as a violation of RCW 46.61.502, 46.61.504, or an equivalent local ordinance.
(b) A person convicted of reckless driving shall be required, under RCW 46.20.720, to install an ignition interlock device on all vehicles operated by the person if the conviction is the result of a charge that was originally filed as a violation of RCW 46.61.520 committed while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or any drug or RCW 46.61.522 committed while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or any drug.
Car Accident Injury Attorney in Spokane
Reckless driving is often the cause of many car accident injuries. If you’ve been injured in a car accident, do not hesitate to contact the experienced Spokane attorneys at Parke Gordon Law Firm to handle your case. Disputes over liability in an accident can see those injured in an accident receive inadequate compensation. The attorneys at Parke Gordon Law Firm will work hard to get you the compensation you deserve. Contact the law office of personal injury attorney Mat Parke today for a free consultation. This is your opportunity to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney about your case for free. Call (509) 482-7274 to get started on receiving a fair settlement from your personal injury case.
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