When you’ve been in an injury-related car accident and seek representation, the charges filed can affect how the case is handled. Overwhelmingly, crashes happen because of human behaviors, including speeding, running red lights and driving under the influence. Actions like these are of course irresponsible, but they usually fall into one of two camps: reckless or careless. Though these terms are often used interchangeably, they have some important distinctions that can impact how your attorney approaches your case.
The following should help to set the record straight on how the two charges compare and contrast.
Careless driving is the broader of the two violations, meaning more behaviors fall under this characterization. Though the term’s definition varies by state, careless driving involves behaviors that are against the law and can jeopardize the safety of others.
Lauren Campoli, a Minneapolis-based attorney, described a careless driver as a “person whose conduct is careless or heedlessly in disregard for the rights of others.” Speeding is the classic example of a careless driver. According to the National Highway of Traffic Safety Administration, more than 9,200 people died in accidents where speeding was to blame in 2014. Exceeding the speed limit is the most common traffic violation and is often involved in other violations, such as driving under the influence of alcohol.