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Calgary Drivers Who Disobey “Speed Pass Law”” Face Liability for Accidents”

Posted in: Blog // Written on behalf of Cuming & Gillespie
October 15, 2015

Most car accidents in the Calgary area take place when one or more of the drivers involved aren’t fully paying attention or fully obeying applicable traffic laws. The fact that car accidents are so easily preventable, and almost always caused by someone’s negligence, is what opens these accidents up to personal injury lawsuits. When a driver causes injuries to others by being negligent, they owe compensation to the injured parties for their financial losses and for their pain and suffering.

Even though practically all car accidents in Calgary are preventable, some are more preventable than others. The so-called “speed pass law” is in effect in Calgary and throughout Alberta in an attempt to prevent some of the most common and dangerous car accidents: those that occur on the side of the road and involve a disabled vehicle and/or a tow truck operator or other responder.

Preventing Some of Calgary’s Most Dangerous Car Accidents

Accidents involving disabled vehicles are especially dangerous for a few key reasons. First, other drivers are not expecting to encounter disabled vehicles on the side of the road, and are thus less likely to be paying attention to the possibility of collisions on road and highway shoulders and other places disabled vehicles might have pulled over. There’s also the fact that disabled vehicles are at a complete stop, which means collisions take place at the full speed of the traveling vehicle (if two vehicles are traveling in the same direction when an accident takes place, the effective speed of the accident is actually reduced; a vehicle that isn’t moving takes the full brunt of a moving vehicle’s momentum during a collision).

Finally, there’s the fact that occupants of disabled vehicles are often not wearing safety belts and are even frequently out of their vehicles. This leaves them without the protections that a car provides, and makes serious injuries and fatalities far more likely. These are the reasons that side-of-the-road accidents are so dangerous, and why the “speed pass law” exists.

This law requires drivers passing a disabled vehicle and/or an emergency vehicle on the side of the road to slow down and ideally, when safe to do so, to move into another lane of traffic to leave more open space around the disabled vehicle. Obeying this law properly requires paying more attention—which is the key factor in preventing more accidents—and also creates safer spaces around vehicle on the side of the road by creating buffer zones (when vehicles are able to move over) and limiting the chances for serious injuries with lower speeds.

Drivers who fail to obey the speed pass law can not only face traffic charges, but liability for any injuries they cause should a collision occur.

Personal Injury Help for Your Calgary Car Accident

If you or a family member has been injured following a side-of-the-road accident or any other car accident caused by another Calgary driver’s negligence, you are entitled to compensation. Get the help you deserve, and contact the legal team at Cuming & Gillespie today.

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