Understanding Georgia Motor Vehicle Crash Report Codes
Most accidents involve objects or people that are in movement. The type of movement that the other object is using will often have a significant effect on the damages and injuries involved in a case. This is why the Georgia motor vehicle crash report includes a section about what objects, if any, were hit—which often gets coded as Collision with Object (Not Fixed) Event.
Knowing what you collided with will be a big part of your car accident case and additional liability may also arise from a collision with certain types of non-fixed objects—which includes individuals.
What objects are considered “not fixed” on the Georgia motor vehicle crash report?
Anything that moves is considered “not fixed.” That can include:
- Yes, the crash report considers people “objects” in the sense that they are physical objects that can be hit in a collision. Even when a pedestrian is not moving when the accident occurs, that person is considered a non-fixed object. They are not fixed in place to the ground, even if they were standing still.
- Although the term “pedalcycle” is not widely used, it covers all forms of cycling vehicles, regardless of how many wheels they have or how many people they can accommodate. Any form of transportation that involves pedal is covered within this term. (If you were hit while on a bicycle, you should get advice from a good Atlanta bicycle accident lawyer.)
- Railway train/street car. These vehicles are technically not included in Georgia’s legal definition of a vehicle. That means that they are considered “objects” as well.
- You might be surprised at how much a collision with an animal can damage your vehicle. Animals are considered a non-fixed object, even if they are stationary when the collision occurs.
- Parked motor vehicle. You may assume that a parked car or other vehicle would be considered stationary, but it is not because it has the potential to move. It could move both on its own and because it collides with you.
- Because accidents that involve deer are so common in Georgia, they have their own category on the Georgia motor vehicle crash report—separate from the general “animal” category.
- Work zone/maintenance equipment. Even large equipment that cannot move much or very quickly is considered a non-fixed object. Maintenance equipment or construction equipment could mean a wide variety of equipment or objects, including things as small as traffic barriers and as large as bulldozers.
- Other object (not fixed). There will always be unusual objects that could fall into this category. The Georgia motor vehicle crash report includes a “catch-all” category for anything that may not fall into the above classifications. In general, the officer filling out the crash report should write in a description of what this “other” object is.
What type of liability could result from a collision with a non-fixed object?
If you collide with a non-fixed object, legal liability could result. The type of damage caused could vary widely. For example, a collision with pedestrian is likely going to cause much more significant injuries or damage compared to a collision with a parked car.
Although you may assume that legal responsibility will always rest with the person who hit the non-fixed object, that may not always be the case. There may be situations where a pedestrian was also at fault because they weren’t walking in a designated area or walked out in front of a vehicle without looking. Even animals, such as cattle that are owned by a local rancher could lead to legal liability on behalf of the rancher.
Likewise, in some cases the car that hit the object is not the car at fault for the accident. For example, if one car changes lanes without looking and runs a second car off the road, and the second car collides with a popcorn stand, there’s a good chance that it’s the first driver who is actually liable for the damages to the stand.
Get Answers from an Atlanta Car Accident Attorney for Free
Talking to an experienced car accident lawyer is the best way to determine if you have a potential legal case to recover for your property damages and injuries resulting from a collision with a non-fixed object. John Foy & Associates can be a great resource to determine if you have a potential legal action. We offer a FREE consultation process where you can learn about your potential legal actions. Fill out the form to your right or call us at 404-400-4000 to get your free consultation today.