Rush Hour Car Crashes in Baltimore

In Maryland, between 8:00 – 9:00 in the morning and 5:00 – 6:00 in the evening, there are more drivers on the roads. Rush hour brings with it an increased risk of car crashes as more people are heading to and from school, work, appointments, and other obligations. 

During rush hour traffic, it is critical that all drivers obey the traffic lights and pay attention to surrounding motorists. A distracted driver in heavy traffic presents potential harm to hundreds of drivers who trust one another to pay attention and follow the rules. Failure to stop on red at a traffic light, or to stop at a stop sign can result in the death or serious injury of an innocent individual(s). In situations where a person is injured or worse killed by a negligent driver, the family may wish to review the matter with experienced counsel who can provide relevant legal advice. 

If you are in a rush hour car collision or in a car accident at any time, you can always contact the Law Offices of Larry B. Litt for a free consultation with a Baltimore car accident claims lawyer. In a no-obligation, free consultation, a member of our legal team can address your questions and explore whether you might have a claim. Before you make any decisions or decide to accept an insurance offer, find out how much your case may be worth.

Why Do Rush Hour Collisions Happen in Maryland?

Rush hour is one of the most common times for car wrecks. This is for a few reasons:

  • There are more people on the road. There are more trucks, pedestrians, bicyclists, and cars all sharing the same roads, streets, and highways. This added congestion can lead to bottlenecks and car accidents.
  • Everyone is in a hurry. People need to get to school, work, doctor’s appointments, and other places on time in the morning. And in the evening, people just want to get home. This added pressure can mean some motorists choose to speed or drive recklessly, which can put everyone in danger.
  • Distractions are more common. On a work day, drivers may be getting text messages from work, daycare, or schools. Students may be getting updates about their classed or may be thinking about tests. After a long day, everyone is thinking about what happened throughout the day, and what they are going to do in the evening. These distractions, combined with heavier traffic, can lead to tragedies.
  • Aggressive driving is more common. Since drivers may be distracted and worried about getting to work, school, or appointments by a specific time, they may be more likely to get frustrated. This can mean they make illegal maneuvers, speed, or drive aggressively.
  • Unexpected situations can make a bad situation worse. A car breaking down on a busy road or bad weather can slow down traffic even more, leading to more frustration and even instances of road rage.
  • Many Baltimore residents head out of town during this time. Many residents of Baltimore head outside the community for work, shopping, school, and medical care. This can mean rush hour is especially busy in town.

What to Do After a Car Accident During Rush Hour

  1. Check yourself for injuries. – Evaluate your injuries, if you have been hurt, and the extent of them. If you sustained an injury, call 911 right away or get someone else to do it for you. Try not to move if you have suffered serious injuries. Wait for first responders to arrive at the accident scene.
  2. Check on your passengers. – Do a quick check on the well-being of passengers if there are others in the vehicle and you are not too badly hurt to preclude moving. Pay particular attention to child passengers who may not be able to articulate their injuries. Call the emergency services if any passengers are hurt. You should call 911 in most auto accidents unless the wreck was a minor fender bender.
  3. Get your vehicle to a safe place. – If you can still drive your vehicle, get it to a safe place as quickly as you can. Often, other vehicles hit cars that are disabled after a crash, particularly at times of congestion during rush hour. Drive your vehicle to the side of the road or another safe place. If you cannot drive your vehicle, leave it, and get yourself and your passengers to a secure place.
  4. Use hazard lights. – You should activate your vehicle’s hazard lights after an auto collision during rush hour or at any other time. Many drivers will be hurrying to get to work or to get home and they are more likely to see a stricken car if its hazard lights are activated. If it is safe to get out of your vehicle and you have additional safety equipment, set down warning triangles, or emergency flares around the accident site.
  5. Call 911. – You should call 911 after being involved in an auto wreck on the Baltimore roadways. The police officer or state trooper will secure the accident scene and compile a report about what happened that will likely prove invaluable in a future personal injury claim.
  6. Exchange information. – After checking for injuries, you should exchange contact and insurance information with other drivers involved in the car wreck. You should exchange the following information after a rush hour collision; full name and contact information, driver’s license and vehicle tag number, insurance company and policy numbers, make, model, and color of all vehicles involved in the accident, and the location of the accident. This exchange with the other driver should be limited to documentary details. Do not discuss blame or admit fault to another driver.
  7. Gather Evidence. – Your ability to gather evidence after the auto wreck during rush hour will depend on the extent of injuries and your ability to do so safely. Documentary evidence from the accident scene can be crucial to a subsequent personal injury claim. Investigating officers may get facts wrong, and it is challenging to clear up the record weeks later. Some recommended steps to take include; identifying the police officers or state troopers, record the name and badge number of all responding officers or state troopers, get a copy of the accident police report, and record all names of witnesses at the accident scene including passengers in other vehicles. Most importantly, take pictures and videos. Take pictures from all angles of all vehicles and property that was damages and video the scene and even get witness statements on video. Footage should include the other vehicle’s license plate.
  8. Be careful about statements to state troopers, police officers, and first responders. – Whatever you say at an auto crash scene can be used against you in a future personal injury claim. Never admit fault to an investigating officer. Restrict your statements to facts about the collision. Do not venture opinions. Do not be untruthful. The at-fault insurance company may use your statement that you were fine medically to minimize the extent of your injuries. Do not tell first responders at the accident scene you are fine, if you are not.

If another driver was negligent and caused the auto accident during rush hour and you have been injured, it makes sense to talk to a personal injury accident attorney.

There are many inherent risks in talking to the at-fault’s insurance company. The adjuster is not on your side and may try to get you to incriminate yourself and make a recorded statement. There is no legal obligation to make a recorded statement.

If you hire an experienced Baltimore car crash injury attorney, the lawyer will deal with the at-fault’s insurance company and take these complicated issues out of your hands.

How Can I Prevent Rush Hour Collisions?

The best way to prevent collisions during rush hour is to give yourself plenty of time and to try to avoid the worst of the traffic. Check apps to see which roads are less busy and plan your route around them. If possible, schedule shopping, appointments, and other activities for less-busy times of the day.

Carpooling can help reduce traffic for everyone and helps you share the driving, which can put less pressure on you. If you do find yourself in a traffic jam, though, breathe deeply and try to stay calm. Getting angry only increases the risk of poor decisions and car crashes.

Even if you take every precaution, however, you can still be in a rush hour wreck. If this happens to you, try to get both cars to the side of the road in the event of a minor accident. This can prevent secondary car accidents. Then, get help for anyone injured on the scene and try to exchange contact information and document as much as possible about the car crash.

During rush hour, when you may already be late for work, it can be tempting to try to resolve the car collision quickly, especially if you think it was minor. This can be a costly mistake. Always take the time to take photos o the scene, all damaged vehicles, and property and always get medical help if you may have been injured. Always get contact and insurance information for anyone involved.

You can also always call the Law Offices of Larry B. Litt at 443-844-1528, even from the side of the road after the car crash. Our legal team is available 24/7/365 and can schedule a free consultation for you with a Baltimore car accident attorney so you can discuss ways you can seek the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

Talk to a Baltimore Car Crash Attorney After a Rush Hour Accident

Every day, an average of 300 car crashes take place in Maryland. Many of them involve injuries, and a large number occur on the beltway, roadways in Baltimore, and highways. The Law Offices of Larry B. Litt can evaluate your claim and make sure you avoid making mistakes post-car crash that will harm your personal injury case. Call us to schedule a free no-obligation consultation today at 443-844-1528.