What to know about reckless driving

On Behalf of | Nov 4, 2021 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

Reckless driving is a punishable offense for drivers in Barboursville, West Virginia. and in most other states. Stats show 33% of U.S. auto accidents involve reckless driving and 70% of drivers admitted to it. While reckless driving has a broad definition, it divides into various forms and penalties.

Overview of reckless driving

Many states including West Virginia define reckless driving as the intentional disregard of safety while operating a vehicle. Reckless driving often causes personal injury to others from head-on collisions, pedestrian accidents, T-bone collisions, and cycling accidents. Some examples of reckless driving include excessive speeding, drag racing, driving on sidewalks, and unsafe lane changing.

West Virginia doesn’t set a particular speed limit as reckless driving, so charges are based on circumstances. A driver in West Virginia may be able to get first-time DUI charges reduced to a wet reckless charge. While drivers may not lose their license on the first offenses that don’t involve drag racing, it will add six points to it.

Common penalties for reckless driving

Reckless driving commonly gets charged as a misdemeanor with penalties of a five to 90-day jail term and/or a $25-$500 fine. If a third offense occurs within a 24-month period or it included drag racing, a license suspension may apply. Second offenses or reckless driving causing bodily injury include penalties of a minimum 10 days to six months of jail and or up to a $1000 fine.

If reckless driving causes a fatality, the driver may get charged with vehicular homicide, which includes a year or more of jail time. A driver may erase at least three points from their license by taking a state-approved driving course to prevent license suspension.

Drivers charged with reckless driving have the right to fight charges. They may work to get charges reduced or even dropped, but they need a good defense strategy.

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