Careless Driving

The concept of careless driving might come off as a bit confusing, especially since reckless or dangerous driving are charges that are seemingly similar.

The idea today is for you to be able to understand the concept of careless driving, so much so that you can differentiate it from its counterparts.

Depending on your jurisdiction, the penalties for careless driving can vastly differ. A big part of that is the extent of the behaviors that define the act, which can be a laundry list in some areas.

Some of the more known ones include speeding, fatigue at the wheel that causes sleep, ignoring traffic signals, cell phone use, driving in an illegal lane, etc. You don’t typically find drivers getting jail time for careless driving.

Instead, penalties tend to equate to traffic fines based on tickets that would have been handed out by the police. You may even find that further actions are imposed to discourage repetition of the act. These may include community service or a traffic school order.

There may even be a temporary license suspension imposed on the driver if a pattern is established.

Careless driving

How Is This Not Dangerous Driving?

In name, the two sound alike, but they differ in seriousness and intent. That’s why you find that careless driving tends to have fewer steep penalties than dangerous driving.

In careless driving cases, there is often not an intention to be dangerous or cause harm to anyone. Dangerous driving requires both things to be true.

So, you often find that offenses that are not as highly classified as dangerous driving tend to constitute as careless driving. For example, if your attention was diverted because you were on your cell phone, the act itself is dangerous, since it can result in dire circumstances.

Nevertheless, you very likely did not intend to hurt anyone, as you did not intend for your vehicle to slip out of lane, hit a pedestrian, hit another vehicle, or anything else that the distraction may have caused.

Only if the one who is committing the dangerous driving offense is fully aware of what is being done and intends to be a danger on the road, then they are intending to cause a dangerous situation.

However, the fines across the two charges can look incredibly similar, depending on what the result is.

Both careless and reckless driving can cause severe injury and death. In those cases, you may find that the rulings, especially with additional charges applied, don’t seem to be that much different.

How to Navigate These Cases

These road-based offenses are handled in a very black and white manner, which means you are likely going to have some trouble navigating them if you are on the wrong end. So, it’s in your best interest to retain an experienced attorney for the best possible outcome.

On the flip side, if you were injured by a careless driver, you want an attorney on your side so that the full extent of the law is applied for your adequate compensation.

In either case, reach out to FMK Law Group as soon as possible and speak to one of the experienced attorneys today!