Two people were seriously injured in an out-of-control car crash which occurred on southbound Interstate 15 near Moapa.
According to witnesses and the Nevada Highway Patrol, a 35-year-old man operating a Jeep SUV, whose name was not released, was driving recklessly in the inside lane. His behavior apparently drew the ire of two other motorists, who also began driving recklessly. At one point, a passenger in a Cadillac threw a bottle at the Jeep’s driver. When the Jeep’s driver tried to pass a BMW, the operator lost control and careened into the northbound lanes. The vehicle struck 69-year-old Michael Prinaris almost head-on, killing him instantly. A trailing Nissan Pathfinder was also involved in the crash, and its two occupants were rushed to a nearby hospital.
Authorities arrested 24-year-old Nan Ying and 19-year-old Jincheng Sun on various reckless driving charges.
Excessive speed is already one of the most dangerous behaviors on the road, as speeding is a factor in a third of the fatal car accidents in Nevada. When speed is combined with anger, it becomes even more dangerous.
Speed enhances both the risk of a collision and the force in that collision. First, speed exponentially increases stopping distance. That’s the distance that vehicles travel in the few moments it takes their drivers to see a hazard ahead, realize they need to apply the brakes, move their feet from the accelerator to the brake pedal, and safely stop the vehicle. At 50mph, the average stopping distance is about thirteen car lengths. At 70mph, stopping distance almost doubles to twenty-four car lengths. Many variables, such as the size of the vehicle, the driver’s attentiveness, and any adverse environmental conditions, could increase stopping distance even further.
Second, according to Newton’s Second Law, speed exponentially increases the force in a collision between two objects. Therefore, what would only be a moderate injury accident at 50mph is most likely a fatal collision at 70mph. To establish liability in speed related-crashes, the negligence per se shortcut is almost always available. NRS484B.600 is the basic speeding law which objectively prohibits any velocity above the posted speed limit. The next section — NRS484B.603 — is a subjective speeding law which requires motorists to slow down “when approaching and crossing an intersection, when approaching and going around a curve, when approaching a hill crest, when traveling upon any narrow or winding highway, or when special hazards exist or may exist with respect to pedestrians or other traffic, or by reason of weather or other highway conditions.” Furthermore, motorists must also reduce their speeds “as may be necessary to avoid colliding with any person, vehicle or other conveyance.” Negligence per se cases are very close to strict liability cases, since victim/plaintiffs must only establish statutory violation and causation.
In almost all speed-related crashes, victims are entitled to compensation for their medical bills and other economic damages, along with compensation for their emotional distress and other noneconomic damages. In egregious speed-related cases, perhaps one that involves a racing-level velocity or a violation of one of Nevada’s aggressive driving laws, additional punitive damages may be available as well, and many jurors are anxious to punish tortfeasors (negligent drivers) who speed recklessly and cause considerable damage.
Contact an Assertive Las Vegas Car Accident Attorney
Speeding drivers often kill innocent people. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer in Las Vegas, contact Naqvi Injury Law. We are prepared to assist you immediately.