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Is Swerving to Avoid a Car Crash a Good Idea?

Posted by Russell West | Dec 13, 2021 | 0 Comments

Washington State law enforcement is continuing to investigate an accident that occurred on SR-395. A woman was driving southbound on 395 while three other vehicles were headed north. The woman's vehicle entered a northbound lane and struck another vehicle that was traveling in the opposing direction. A third and fourth vehicle later swerved to avoid the crash but one of the vehicles struck the woman's vehicle. At the moment, no one faces charges for the crash.

One of the people involved in the crash died at a nearby hospital following the accident. A semi-truck that was pulling a tanker trailer also crashed due to the accident. Interstate 395 in the northbound direction was temporarily closed as a result of the accident as crews tended to the scene. . 

What Constitutes Swerving?

Swerving involves making two consecutive steers in the opposite directions to avoid an obstacle. Motorists often swerve to avoid potential danger and then return to their original lane. For drivers in Spokane and the surrounding area, it is a good idea to remain alert while driving, particularly during certain times of the year when traffic is heavy and the weather can get rough. 

Reasons to Think Twice About Swerving

Trying to avoid an accident by swerving is a legitimate way to reduce your chances of ending up in an undesirable situation. Regardless of whether it is a deer darting across the road or another motorist nearby suddenly stopping in your lane, swerving is a reasonable way to avoid an accident. Swerving, however, comes with some notable dangers, and it is a good idea for motorists to understand what these risks are. Some reasons why motorists should think twice before swerving include:

  • Motorists who swerve to avoid hazards are at risk of losing control of their vehicle and striking another object. While a driver might avoid striking the first obstacle, they could very well end up hitting something else. 
  • The Insurance Information Institute has found that swerving or avoiding an obstacle played a role in 1,148 crashes in 2019 that resulted in fatalities.
  • In situations in which a motor vehicle driver suddenly moves to the opposite lane or swerves to avoid a hazard, pedestrians are at risk of being struck. After all, drivers who swerve do so suddenly and have little to no time to investigate their surroundings. 

Consider Braking Instead of Swerving

If you are driving and must respond suddenly without time for examining your surroundings, it may be a better idea to hit the brakes. With antilock braking systems, you should apply as much force as possible to the brake pedal. If your vehicle is not equipped with antilock braking, you should brake just short of the vehicle's wheels locking. If you end up rear-ending another vehicle, you will likely be found at fault for resulting damages, but this is often a better result than swerving. 

Speak With a Knowledgeable Accident Attorney

Obstacles on the road ranging from dangerous drivers to construction debris can cause motorists to debate swerving and potentially end up in a worse situation. If you or someone you love has been injured or impacted by a car crash involving a motorist who swerved, an attorney at West Law Office can help fight for the results you deserve. Contact our law office today for assistance.

About the Author

Russell West

Russell West from West Law Office, located in Spokane, Washington represents clients in areas of criminal traffic, misdemeanors, and personal injury. DUI’s, Reckless Driving, Negligent driving, Hit and Run, and Driving with Suspended license are the majority of criminal traffic violations. Drug Charges, Theft, and Domestic Violence account for most of the other criminal cases Russell handles.

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West Law Office - Russell West Attorney

Spokane Attorney Russell West practice areas include: Auto Accidents, Personal Injury, Motorcycle Accidents, Slip and Falls, DUIs, DOL Hearings, Criminal Traffic, Expungement/Vacating Records, and Insurance Bad Faith

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