T-bone accidents, also known as side-impact collisions, can result in devastating consequences for all involved. Many victims suffer significant injuries and some lose their lives.
Drivers should review the dangers associated with these types of accidents, their causes and most importantly, how to prevent them.
An overview of T-bone accidents
T-bone accidents occur when the front of one vehicle collides with the side of another, forming a “T” shape. Unlike rear-end or head-on collisions, where vehicles have some level of protection, T-bone accidents leave occupants especially vulnerable due to the limited protection offered by side doors. The lack of crumple zones and airbags in this area makes occupants more susceptible to severe injuries, including broken bones, spinal cord damage, concussions and even fatalities.
Failing to obey traffic signals is a leading cause of T-bone accidents. Driving above the speed limit reduces reaction time, making it harder to avoid collisions, especially at intersections. Diverting attention from the road, whether due to cellphone use, eating or other distractions, also increases the risk of T-bone accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that distracted driving accidents claimed 3,142 lives in 2020.
Preventing T-bone accidents
Drivers must stop at red lights and stop signs, and be aware of the right of way when approaching intersections. They should avoid aggressive driving behaviors, such as tailgating or running yellow lights. Drivers can eliminate distractions by keeping their phones out of reach. People must stay aware of their surroundings and anticipate potential hazards. Additionally, drivers should leave enough space between their vehicle and the one ahead, especially at intersections. This provides more time to react to sudden stops or unexpected maneuvers.
T-bone accidents pose significant risks due to the limited protection offered to occupants. Behind the wheel, drivers must stay vigilant and prioritize road safety at all times.