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Run off the road by a distracted driver: What now?

When someone says that they were "ran off of the road," the phrase makes it sound deliberate, like it was part of a road-rage incident. While that certainly does happen in Ohio, it's important to remember that you can also get ran off of the road by someone who is simply not paying enough attention to what they're doing.

For instance, one of the top reasons this happens is distracted driving. Someone looks down at the radio, reads a text message or tries to take another drink of that coffee they brought along for their morning commute. They momentarily lose control of the car, which drifts into your lane. Perhaps you're driving down the interstate, safely staying in the right lane, when the car passing you on the left begins drifting in your direction. Trying to avoid a crash, you swerve off of the road and into the ditch.

This is a very dangerous accident because now you're likely to crash into a stationary object: a sign, a tree, a concrete wall along the interstate, the divider fence from an exit lane, a car parked on the side of the road. Even if you slam on the brakes -- your only real option to avoid the crash -- you may not be able to slow down from interstate speeds fast enough. It can cause a brutal accident that leaves you in the hospital with serious injuries.

What should you do now? Even if that other driver didn't touch your car, they still caused the accident. You have to know what rights you have to seek compensation.

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