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Single Car Collision, No Witnesses = Careless?
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:25 pm 
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Details:

Driving onto ramp entering a major highway, posted limit is 100km/h, suggested ramp limit is 40km/h - I end up colliding with the concrete barrier on the passenger side of the vehicle.

Police arrive, suspect alcohol and breathalyze me with a result of 0.00 - I am asked for a statement and cautioned, however (stupidly) I proceed to provide the details anyways.

In my statement I say that I was travelling at 100km/h, when I entered the curve I slowed to 80km/h and impacted the guardrail. The roads were dry, visibility was good (for 8:30PM) and there were no other vehicles around. Alcohol was not a factor and the only suggestion I gave as to why the accident occured was that I cut the corner too tight.

I was given a careless ticket based on the statement I provided. The vehicle had been moved from the original location prior to the police arriving. No measurements were taken nor did the officer look at the vehicle. The officer also did not talk to my girlfriend who was also in the vehicle.

I went to my first appearance and was offered a 3pt charge and $80 fine which I said no to until I was given full disclosure. Disclosure arrived yesterday.

Here is where my questions come in... The accident report describes the initial impact being on the drivers side, however, the POI was on the passenger side - the driver side never made contact with any part of the barrier. I have digital pictures of the accident which can prove this point. Is this enough of a technicality to have the charge withdrawn? Will the courts accept pictures that I have taken?

Additionally, my statement was given immediately after the accident, I was in shock and had hit my head when the airbag went off so many of the finer details were/are very cloudy. I initially said impact was made at 80km/h but had this been the case I dont think I would have walked away from it (let alone my girlfriend who was sitting in the front passenger seat). However, the accident report and my statement both said impact at 80km/h - aside from some front end damage (twisting) the car was in decent shape IE I was able to steer it onto the flatbed that arrive shortly after the accident. Assuming I brought in an expert witness (IE a 20 year veteran of the Toronto Police collision Bureau) to rebute the possibility of an 80km/h collision, could this be enough to show that there were other factors at work other than speed?

Lastly, the car involved was an 08 Toyota Corolla - and while I know these aren't on the recall list... yet, would it raise enough suspicion to have the charge withdrawn?

I havent spoken to a paralegal yet, I am planning to do so over the next couple weeks to get an idea of what my next steps are. I thought I would try here first to get some insight into what some of you thought. My first attendance is in August.

Thoughts? Comments?


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:27 pm 
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PS: I apologize about the length - wanted to make sure the details were there.


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Re: Single Car Collision, No Witnesses = Careless?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 11:13 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2008 11:31 pm
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Stunderthal wrote:
Details:

Driving onto ramp entering a major highway, posted limit is 100km/h, suggested ramp limit is 40km/h - I end up colliding with the concrete barrier on the passenger side of the vehicle.

Police arrive, suspect alcohol and breathalyze me with a result of 0.00 - I am asked for a statement and cautioned, however (stupidly) I proceed to provide the details anyways.

In my statement I say that I was travelling at 100km/h, when I entered the curve I slowed to 80km/h and impacted the guardrail. The roads were dry, visibility was good (for 8:30PM) and there were no other vehicles around. Alcohol was not a factor and the only suggestion I gave as to why the accident occured was that I cut the corner too tight.

I was given a careless ticket based on the statement I provided. The vehicle had been moved from the original location prior to the police arriving. No measurements were taken nor did the officer look at the vehicle. The officer also did not talk to my girlfriend who was also in the vehicle.

I went to my first appearance and was offered a 3pt charge and $80 fine which I said no to until I was given full disclosure. Disclosure arrived yesterday.

Here is where my questions come in... The accident report describes the initial impact being on the drivers side, however, the POI was on the passenger side - the driver side never made contact with any part of the barrier. I have digital pictures of the accident which can prove this point. Is this enough of a technicality to have the charge withdrawn? Will the courts accept pictures that I have taken?

Additionally, my statement was given immediately after the accident, I was in shock and had hit my head when the airbag went off so many of the finer details were/are very cloudy. I initially said impact was made at 80km/h but had this been the case I dont think I would have walked away from it (let alone my girlfriend who was sitting in the front passenger seat). However, the accident report and my statement both said impact at 80km/h - aside from some front end damage (twisting) the car was in decent shape IE I was able to steer it onto the flatbed that arrive shortly after the accident. Assuming I brought in an expert witness (IE a 20 year veteran of the Toronto Police collision Bureau) to rebute the possibility of an 80km/h collision, could this be enough to show that there were other factors at work other than speed?

Lastly, the car involved was an 08 Toyota Corolla - and while I know these aren't on the recall list... yet, would it raise enough suspicion to have the charge withdrawn?

I havent spoken to a paralegal yet, I am planning to do so over the next couple weeks to get an idea of what my next steps are. I thought I would try here first to get some insight into what some of you thought. My first attendance is in August.

Thoughts? Comments?


That turn portion of the ramp with the yellow 40 kph ends at the straight away.

After you get around the turn you should step on the gas peddle to get up to speed. (This case 100 KPH)

I never knew why new drivers did this dumb thing. (now I know)

When you enter a roadway you should always try to get up to highway speed before entering a lane.

You should have been told this during your driving test.

Cheers
Viper`

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2010 12:48 pm 
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... That response is completely irrelevant to the OP, but thanks for the bump


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2010 9:24 pm 
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Location: Toronto
viper1 wrote:
After you get around the turn you should step on the gas peddle to get up to speed. (This case 100 KPH)


:?

Those advisory signs are not set by engineers and are invariably well below the design speed of the curve. (EG Hwy 401 W/B on-ramp to S/B Hwy 427: Advisory speed = 90 km/h, Design speed = 130 km/h.) Actually, studies have shown people drive faster around curves that have those advisory signs than similar curves without the signs. :roll:

Stunderthal wrote:
I was given a careless ticket based on the statement I provided.


That's unfortunate. I think "leave roadway - not in safety" may have applied. Careless is a lot harder to prove. If you can get the officer with considerable experience in collision reconstruction to testify on your behalf, it certainly can't hurt. As for the speed factor... there's more to the charge than just speed... Since careless driving is a very serious HTA charge, I'd recommend professional help. If the officer you spoke of is helping you, that would go a long way. The photos you took may be submitted, but there are some guidelines (go to the Courts & Procedures section of this website and click on "Guidelines for Submitting photogaphs.")

Stunderthal wrote:
Lastly, the car involved was an 08 Toyota Corolla - and while I know these aren't on the recall list... yet, would it raise enough suspicion to have the charge withdrawn?


Unless you raised the issue of a stuck accelerator at the time of the crash, that's a long shot. Furthermore, you'd need a mechanic's certificate showing that there was indeed a problem at the time.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 07, 2010 12:43 pm 
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Thanks Radar,

In going to that Courts and Procedures section of the website I noticed the fatal errors sticky which raised another couple of questions.

1. My ticket was issued on December 5th with a set fine of $260 and payable of $325... I see now the fines have increased to set of $400 and payable $490. When was this increase made? The prosecutor mentioned that the fines had increased at my first attendance but I didnt really think anything of it at the time. Will they be trying to charge me $490 even though my ticket and notice of trial say $325?

2. Is there any way to discredit the validity of my statement? Without the statement the entire case would rely on the hearsay evidence of the officer and a incorrect accident report.

3. The accident report says 'no' to "breathalyzer, blood test, admin" but the officers notes say that there was one conducted but it registered 0.00. I think she did this to save me from my insurance company - but can this discrepancy work for me?

Any and all help is greatly appreciated.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 08, 2010 8:12 pm 
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Stunderthal wrote:
1. My ticket was issued on December 5th with a set fine of $260 and payable of $325... I see now the fines have increased to set of $400 and payable $490. When was this increase made?


The increased set fine amounts went into effect on January 1 of this year. As your ticket was issued before then, if the case is settled out of court then you would be liable for $325, not $490. However, once the trial starts, if you get convicted, the JP has the discretion to raise or lower the fine.

Stunderthal wrote:
2. Is there any way to discredit the validity of my statement?


If you can show that you were under duress and blurted out a number (e.g. 80) without thinking about it, maybe. But you'd really need to be thorough and concise. It's much easier said than done.

Stunderthal wrote:
3. The accident report says 'no' to "breathalyzer, blood test, admin" but the officers notes say that there was one conducted but it registered 0.00. I think she did this to save me from my insurance company - but can this discrepancy work for me?


Probably not. But you mentioned that you were going to talk to several paralegals (good idea for this charge), and that you have an ex-TPS collision investigator who could help you... talk to them and see what they say.

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* The above is NOT legal advice. By acting on anything I have said, you assume responsibility for any outcome and consequences. *
http://www.OntarioTicket.com OR http://www.OHTA.ca


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