blog home Car Accident What Are Phantom Vehicles and Why Are They Common?

What Are Phantom Vehicles and Why Are They Common?

By Joseph Low on June 15, 2023

White tesla driving at dusk with its headlights off.

When a car is on the road with headlights and taillights off, it is called a “phantom vehicle.” Drivers do not always realize they are driving with their headlights off or the dangers they pose to others. It is essential to turn on your headlights when driving at night. The likelihood of an accident increases from dusk to dawn, and turning on your headlights could help reduce those chances.

Are You Required to Turn Your Headlights On?

Not only does turning on your headlights help save lives, but it is also required by law. In California, drivers must turn on their headlights:

  • Between sunset and sunrise
  • If it is raining, foggy, cloudy, or snowing
  • If a sign is posted stating that headlights are required
  • If it is a frosty morning or when drivers may have foggy windows
  • Whenever weather conditions keep you from seeing vehicles that are more than 1,000 feet away
  • If you need to get a driver’s attention due to an emergency

Although it is not required by law, you could consider using your headlights at all times of the day. Studies show that doing so could reduce your likelihood of being involved in a collision.

If you drive with your headlights off during a time when it is required to have them on, you could be ticketed. If ticketed for driving without headlights, you would have to pay a fine, and one point would be added to your DMV driving record.

How is Liability Affected by Not Having Your Headlights On?

In an accident that was caused by headlight issues, liability could rest with the driver of that vehicle. Drivers have a responsibility to ensure that their vehicles are in working order and in accordance with state and local traffic laws. California is a liability state when it comes to car insurance. If you cannot prove that the driver of the car with the headlight issues caused the accident, the driver’s liability insurance will not cover the cost of the accident.

These types of cases can be complicated and often require extensive investigative work to prove, which is why it is crucial to hire an experienced personal injury attorney to handle your case. Doing so could improve your chances of recovering compensation. Compensation in a headlight car accident case could cover the following:

  • Medical expenses, including emergency room visits, surgeries, treatment for your injuries, rehabilitative care, medication, assistive devices, and more.
  • Property damage, such as a totaled vehicle.
  • Lost wages for time away from work and reduced earning capacity if you are unable to return to work due to your injuries.
  • Pain and suffering, including mental anguish, emotional distress, PTSD, and more.

In California, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim is two years, so it is important that you act quickly. You do not want to miss your chance to obtain the compensation you deserve.

Talk to an Experienced Long Beach Personal Injury Lawyer About Your Car Accident Case!

If you were injured in a car accident that was caused by a phantom vehicle, you are likely going through a difficult time. Medical bills may be mounting, which is undoubtedly stressful. At The Law Firm of Joseph H. Low IV, our experienced Long Beach car accident lawyer has extensive experience in handling these cases. He could provide the knowledgeable and compassionate legal support you need to get through this experience. Reach out to our law office today at (562) 901-0840 to schedule a free case review and get started on your claim.

Posted in: Car Accident

"Joseph, Thank you for your assistance. Your understanding compassion & incredible expertise are admired & appreciated. I will be referring any of my clients who require legal help to you."
- M.D.