A local New Hampshire news report indicated that a driver involved in a head-on collision is facing reckless conduct charges. State police reported that the 21-year-old driver crossed through a center line on a New Hampshire road and collided with another driver. The at-fault motorist was arrested and then taken to a local hospital for treatment of the injuries he sustained in the accident. Both the young driver’s passenger and the woman driving the vehicle he collided with sustained severe injuries. They were transported to the hospital for life-threatening injuries. State police explained that the case is still under investigation to determine why the young man crossed through the center line.
Under New Hampshire law, a criminal reckless conduct charge is taken very seriously and can carry significant penalties, including jail time and significant fines. Moreover, if a New Hampshire driver is injured because of another’s reckless or aggressive driving, they can pursue civil remedies and may be entitled to compensation for their injuries. Under state law, drivers are required to operate their vehicles with ordinary and reasonable care. Ordinary and reasonable care means that drivers should follow posted speed limits, safely change lanes, keep a safe following distance, properly pass other drivers, and not engage in reckless or aggressive driving.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) explains that aggressive driving occurs when an individual operates a vehicle in a way that endangers or is likely to endanger someone or their property. Further, New Hampshire law specifies that reckless driving includes driving in a manner that poses a “substantial and unjustifiable” risk to others when the driver knew of the attendant dangers and disregarded them. Some common scenarios that may result in a reckless driving charge are street racing, speeding over 100 mph, and swerving through traffic at a high speed. These behaviors are likely to result in severe injuries to passengers, other drivers, and pedestrians. If an aggressive driver’s behavior causes an accident and injuries, they should be held liable for the resulting damages.