Wrong way crashes may be rare, but they are still a serious problem in Ohio. Wrong-way crashes are about 100 times more deadly than other types of accidents, which make them one of the most dangerous types of accidents that you could be involved in. In fact, they account for a little over 1 percent of all traffic fatalities that occur in Ohio, despite the fact that they happen so rarely. Unfortunately, these fatalities often affect the innocent driver and the passengers in either car.
Even worse, wrong-way crashes are on the rise in Ohio. Over the past few years, the National Transportation Safety Board has reported a steady increase in these accidents in fact, from 2013 to 2014 alone wrong-way crash fatalities jumped almost 5 percent. These increases have led law enforcement to crack down not only on wrong-way drivers, but also on drunk and drugged drivers, as over half of all wrong-way accidents are caused by drivers under the influence.
Harsh Penalties for Wrong-Way Crashes in Ohio
Due in part to the uptick in these dangerous accidents in Ohio over the past few years, legislators in the Ohio Senate have proposed a bill that would increase penalties for anyone driving the wrong way for at least 500 feet on an interstate highway, including over year-long license suspensions for anyone causing accidents while driving the wrong way. In fact, some wrong-way driving charges could even lead to up to three years in jail or felony punishments under certain conditions if the proposed legislation passes.
While those wrong-way drivers who are under the influence already find themselves facing harsher OVI penalties, this new law would add separate charges for simply driving the wrong way, regardless of the underlying causes. If this law passes, Ohio’s already strengthening wrong-way crash penalties would become much more severe.
How Can a Cincinnati Traffic Lawyer Help Me?
It is unknown whether or not this bill will pass, but in the meantime, wrong-way crashes can still lead to serious charges. If you cause a wrong-way crash, sober or not, you can still face hefty fines and other serious consequences. In these accidents, it is important to get the help of an experienced Cincinnati traffic lawyer to help you show your side of the story. After you are in a wrong-way crash, call Cincinnati traffic lawyer Brad Groene at (513) 338-1890 right away for a free consultation on your case. Find out how we may be able to help.