When people think about dangerous driving styles, the image that comes to mind is often an angry driver tailgating other cars or weaving in and out of traffic. Not many people think about someone gripping a steering wheel tightly and traveling below the speed limit. However, timid drivers can pose just as much danger as any other type of careless driver.
Below, we discuss what makes timid drivers so dangerous and how to avoid a collision with one. Call our Fort Worth auto accident attorneys today to learn more about your legal options if you were injured in a crash caused by someone else’s negligent actions.
The consultation is free and there are no fees while we work on your case.
Types of Timid Drivers
While safe driving is extremely important, a timid driver is someone who takes being cautious to an extreme level. Some of the types of timid drivers include:
- Newly licensed drivers – Due to a lack of experience on the road, these drivers may feel more tense when changing lanes or performing other maneuvers that require added focus, such as making a left turn while oncoming traffic has the right of way.
- Elderly drivers – While many elderly drivers may be perfectly capable behind the wheel, there are some whose vision, hearing and reflexes may not be as sharp as they once were.
- Impaired drivers – Generally, impaired drivers are known to drive recklessly or aggressively, but sometimes an impaired driver trying to avoid detection or a collision may take extreme caution on the road, such as driving below the posted speed limit.
Drivers transporting cargo or driving someone else’s vehicle may also become timid drivers even when they normally behave differently. For example, a car carrying a mattress on its roof on the highway will most likely travel well below the speed limit.
What Actions Make Timid Drivers Dangerous?
If you have ever seen a timid driver on the road, you may be familiar with some of their actions, including:
- Braking on a clear road
- Driving below the posted speed limit
- Waving others into an intersection when other vehicles might not stop
- Yielding when he or she has the right of way
- Stopping in a roundabout
- Driving too close to the median/curb to keep away from other vehicles
Traffic laws exist to ensure the safety of all who share the road, including pedestrians and cyclists. Overly cautious drivers tend to break these traffic laws due to their fears of other vehicles.
For example, a driver who brakes in a roundabout may cause the following vehicle to crash into him or her.
Are Timid Drivers More Dangerous Than Aggressive Drivers in Texas?
The most dangerous type of driver is someone who does not care for the safety of others around him or her. This could apply to both timid and aggressive drivers, making each dangerous in their own way.
A timid driver only cares about not getting hit by another vehicle, failing to think about how other drivers around him or her may react, especially when the timid driver is traveling below the speed limit. Ironically, a timid driver might create an aggressive driver in this scenario because the driver trying to overtake the slow-moving vehicle could do so in a careless manner, leading to a collision.
What to do if You Encounter a Timid Driver
If you come across someone on the road who is driving below the speed limit or otherwise driving extremely cautiously, your best bet is to steer clear of that driver as soon as possible.
It is important to remain calm if you are unable to get away quickly, though, as you do not want to overtake the vehicle in a way that would result in a crash.
When you encounter a timid driver who does not seem to understand yield laws, make sure the roadway is fully clear before you get into the lane you are being let into. For example, do not cross a multi-lane intersection if you cannot see oncoming traffic. Assume the road is not clear and wait until you have full view of all lanes.
It is generally a best practice to maintain proper following distance in case you encounter a timid driver who brakes for no reason or stops in a roundabout to let someone through.
Who May Be Liable for an Accident with a Timid Driver in Texas?
If you were injured in an accident with a timid driver, liability will ultimately fall on the driver who acted negligently. If the timid driver broke traffic laws for fear of getting into a crash, but caused one, he or she may be liable for your damages. For example, when a timid driver stops when he or she has the right of way and you crash into him or her, liability could fall to the timid driver for unexpectedly stopping while having the right of way.
On the other hand, if you are the driver who committed a negligent act to avoid or get away from the timid driver and instead caused the collision, you could be liable for the crash.
Call a Texas Attorney for Legal Help After a Collision
Timid drivers pose a significant risk to your safety, just as other careless drivers do, but for some different reasons. Whether you were injured by an aggressive or timid driver, call our knowledgeable attorneys today to discuss your claim.
You may be eligible to seek compensation for your damages, and we are prepared to help you pursue the maximum.
Call (817) 920-9000 to schedule a free consultation.