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Minor accident, 20 percent fault?

Discussion in 'Model S: Driving Dynamics' started by johnbr, Mar 29, 2016.

  1. JohnSnowNW

    JohnSnowNW Active Member

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    I'd just like to point out that it doesn't really matter if the guy had his blinker on or not.

    That's like saying it would be partially my fault if someone had their turn signal on, and entered into my lane from a perpendicular road/parking lot. Just because you turn your signal on doesn't give you carte blanche to do whatever.
     
  2. SomeJoe7777

    SomeJoe7777 Marginally-Known Member

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    The law says you have to maintain a safe following distance from any vehicle in front of you. The situation shows that what the other driver did was foreshadowed and somewhat predictable (though illegal and careless):

    - After the other driver completed the merge into the #2 lane from the #3 (rightmost) lane that was ending, he continued to signal.
    - When you were still well behind him, and before you had completed your lane change into the #1 (leftmost) lane, he begins slowing down, with brake lights on (0:15 in the video).
    - Braking in the right-hand lane and signaling left is very suspicious, so I would have immediately expected something unexpected.
    - There is barely sufficient room for a vehicle to U-turn starting from the #1 (leftmost) lane, and insufficient room to U-turn from the center turning lane (though U-turning in the middle of the street is illegal anyway).

    To me, there were enough early warning indications here that you could have avoided the collision. Significant braking did not occur until you were near the oncoming van that was in the center turning lane. By then it was too late.

    The other car's signal and braking do not excuse his actions or remove his culpability, but to me provided enough info to facilitate avoiding the collision.

    In Houston, other drivers do things like this all the time, and years of driving here have caused me to expect such things at every minute.
     
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  3. johnbr

    johnbr Member

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    Okay, first of all - the speed display on the dashcam is very lagged and not something reliable to look at when speeds are changing quickly. It shows me stopped yet doing 25mph at the beginning of the video, it also seems to indicate I was doing 47mph just prior to impact. In reality I was probably doing 5mph, 10 tops when impact occured, I did brake as hard as I could (how about those antilocks? no tire lockup at all) The damage to both cars is minor and I'm guessing if I was going near 47 on impact I'd have thrown that VW quite a ways, airbags would have deployed, etc.

    Admittedly, I accelerate fast.. it's one of my favorite things to do in the Tesla, and I'm sure I got up close to 50.. however when I saw that car slowing and signaling I let off the throttle, and at some point I assumed the car was waiting for me to go by so I kept going - by this time I would say very close to the 40 limit - until they started coming over - at which point I braked as hard as I could.

    I'm not sure what I should have done there, stopped in the middle of the street as the other car was because they were signalling? As far as I know a signal provides intent, but in no way grants right of way in any situation. At the end of the day, I am wondering what law/vehicle code I was in violation of to be found 20% at fault here. I know of none.
     
  4. johnbr

    johnbr Member

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    Here are some pictures of the damage. Anyone care to guess what the body shop estimate is? :)

    I'll add the other car's damage (that I could see at the time) also.
     

    Attached Files:

  5. johnbr

    johnbr Member

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    I forgot to answer the ever important question of the reason I was told I was 20% at fault.

    It was due to the other car having their turn signal on, according to the claims adjustor.
     
  6. johnbr

    johnbr Member

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    Both myself and the other car are insured by Progressive as well.

    Body shop estimate, just shy of 8k, and almost a 2 month wait before they can start work. Apparently there's a backlog of crashed Tesla's?!
     
  7. halg

    halg Member

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    Sounds like the driver is a she not a he to me.
     
  8. Max*

    Max* Charging

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    I'd fight it.
     
  9. dhanson865

    dhanson865 Active Member

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    I would have pulled off the long skinny pedal on the right and started regen as soon as I saw the left turn signal. I would have probably slowed to 35 or 30 by the time he started to swerve into the lane, the slower speed leading into the situation might have let him cross in front of me without me braking or maybe I would have been able to brake more gently and still miss him.

    Was he wrong for turning in front of you like that, 100% yes.

    Could you have avoided the accident, probably. I would have driven to avoid the accident and saved gunning it for a road with no traffic doing weird stuff.

    I'm not saying you are a bad person and deserve to be punished. I'm saying I'm more cautious than you are. It takes all kinds to make the world work. Fight it or not, consider that it might have been avoided. Have a pizza and a beer or a steak and wine or whatever and reflect on the day.
     
    • Like x 1
  10. Todd Burch

    Todd Burch Voltage makes me tingle.

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    That explanation is ridiculous. Did you ask the insurance adjuster to show you where in the law everyone is required to step on the brakes anytime someone has a turn signal on? When I encounter cars where the driver has forgotten to turn off the turn signal, am I required to stay behind them until they remember to turn off their signal? It is flat out, unquestionably the law that it is the responsibility of the person initiating the lane change to verify that the lane is clear and the lane change is safe. Just stupid.

    Even if that were the law, the driver had just merged from lane #3 to lane #2. How would you have known the turn signal was on for an illegal U-turn and not the merge from lane #3 to lane #2?
     
  11. siucity

    siucity Button Pusher

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    I get the feeling that since you're both with the same insurance company, and they're paying for damages to both cars, they're putting some fault on you so they can raise both your insurance rates...
     
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  12. Chaz

    Chaz Big Kahuna

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    If that is the case, fight it.
     
  13. sorka

    sorka Well-Known Member

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    How can that be $8K in damage? Was there damage more to just the bumper? I had my rear bumper repaired and repainted due to the Tesla Service Center damaging it. I was done at their body shop of choice and ran about $800 which is about typical for any car that has a plastic bumper. There doesn't appear to be any alignment issues wit the headlight on that side or the hood. Looks like you got off lucky with this one. Find another body shop.

    Can you list the parts in the estimate they said needs to be repaired? Also, your rate will go up based on the payout of the claim if you are found anything more than 0% responsible.
     
  14. Tennisballer

    Tennisballer Member

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    To answer the original question yes the accident avoidance would have most likely stopped you in time. I notice when using auto pilot if someone has their blinker on and is going much slower than I am the car slows down. I would therefore assume it is ready under normal circumstances to hit the brakes when an idiot is driving like that not to mention it would have been beeping like hell lol.
     
  15. johnbr

    johnbr Member

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    I'd agree if I wasn't driving as spirited as I was it could have been avoided, although I don't believe I violated any law and should not be responsible / held at fault at all.

    I also believe it's easy to Monday morning quarterback any video like this and know what could've / should've been done..

    I am fighting it, my so's mom worked for State Farm for some 30 years and her jaw dropped when she heard they found me 20% fault.
     
  16. johnbr

    johnbr Member

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    I have actually spoken with and gotten estimates from 2 body shops, they both fell in the 7-8k range.

    I'll post the relevant pieces of the estimates later today, just about to put a deposit down for M3 :)
     
  17. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    This was also the first thing I thought when he stated they're both under the same insurance company. When you don't have the right of way a turn signal doesn't assign fault to those failing to yield to you. If it did, merges would turn into an even bigger mess than they already are.

    I'd have said a police report showing the other party at fault would be your best defense, but from that post earlier in the thread is sounds like Progressive doesn't care.
     

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