Just south of I-20 in Grand Prarie on a new stretch of the 360 Tollway, a PT Cruiser missed their exit. Instead of continuing down the road, video surveillance shows the PT Cruiser backing up, stopping, pulling forward, backing up again, and weaving between lanes.
After a close call with another vehicle, the driver kept going. Fox 4 News reported that there were two full minutes of “risky reversing” before a dump truck crashed into the PT Cruiser. After the initial accident, another vehicle also crashed into the PT Cruiser.
The video of the PT Cruiser was posted online, drawing many comments from viewers across the nation.
Surprisingly, no serious injuries were reported from the accident, however significant damage to the median will require repair. According to spokesperson Rey, “Right now, the southbound side of 360 Tollway does have that lane repair, and you’ll note that for the next few days if not weeks.”
The driver of the PT Cruiser was cited for interfering with safety and failing to maintain financial responsibility.
This accident is a prime example of a driver who did not have the right of way when backing up. In most instances, cars traveling straight down a lane have the right of way. This is also true in parking lots, where many fender-benders can occur. Because the driver who is backing up does not have the right of way, the driver backing up will usually be at fault for hitting another vehicle or pedestrian. However there, are some exceptions, such as:
- The other driver was speeding
- The other driver or pedestrian was cutting across the parking lot in an erratic or unpredictable way
- The accident occurred because the other driver was distracted
- The accident occurred because the other driver was drunk
- A hazard in the parking lot caused the accident
If two vehicles are backing up at the same time and collide, it is typical for both drivers to be held equally at fault.
In the case of a tollway road, such as where this accident occurred, the PT Cruiser likely has committed illegal backing. Illegal backing is considered any kind of backing up that is unsafe for the driver, other drivers on the road or that interferes with traffic.
According to Traffic Violation Law Firms, an individual found guilty of illegal backing can expect to pay a fine of $75-$100 and a potential jail sentence of up to 15 days. It is up to the court, but repeated offenses will likely result in higher fines and a higher likelihood of facing time in jail. In some states, demerit points may be awarded per offense. These points go against the individual’s driving record permanently. In some cases, points can be removed by taking driving classes, but too many points can result in a suspended license. Additionally, most insurance companies increase car insurance premiums when and individual accumulates demerit points.