Car accidents are notoriously one of the leading causes of death in the United States. Every year tens of thousands of people die in car accidents while millions more suffer serious or permanent injury.
If you or a loved one has suffered injury or death as a result of a car accident, you may be eligible to receive compensation for your losses and suffering. An experienced personal injury attorney can help you understand your rights and plan a course of action.
Some Sobering Statistics
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, someone in the U.S. is involved in a car accident every 10 seconds.Approximately one third of all car accidents result in injury and nearly one percent result in death.More than half of fatal car accidents occur on roads with speeds limits of 55 mph or greater, and more than one third of fatal crashes involve alcohol.
Negligence in Car Accidents
Determining negligence in the case of a car accident, while not always clear-cut, is usually legally necessary. This is especially true if a police report is filed or legal claim pursued. Under the law, drivers are required to exercise reasonable care and practice car safety in the operation of a motor vehicle.
A driver who fails to exercise reasonable care is considered negligent and can be held responsible for damages. However, the law requires the injured party to prove that someone else’s negligence caused the accident. This is called burden of proof.
Common Causes of Car Accidents
Car accidents are often the result of driver negligence and less often due to factors unrelated to the driver. Driver negligence can lead to a car accident when the driver:
Fails to obey traffic signs or signalsDrives above or below the speed limit fails to use turn signal drives under the influence of drugs or alcohol Drives recklessly (for example driving at excessive speeds and passing or changing lanes improperly) Non-driver related factors may contribute to a car accident including: Automobile defectPoorly maintained roads or other highway defects (for example, inadequate design, lighting, construction, or signage) Malfunctioning traffic signalsIn these cases, the automobile manufacturer or the government may be held liable for damages.
Car Accident Injuries
The most common injury people sustain in a car accident is whiplash. Brain and spinal cord injuries, which have a tremendous impact on the survivor, are most commonly the result of serious car accidents. Car accident injuries may also include bruises and abrasions, concussion, broken bones, loss of limb(s), permanent disability, or death.
What To Do If You Have Been Injured in a Car Accident
Stay at the scene of the accident unless medical exigencies require you to leave.Call the police to file a report.Seek prompt medical attention.Make sure to preserve evidence (for example, take photos of damages if possible and keep copies of all important documents including medical records).
Do not admit fault or enter into negotiations with the other driver(s) or insurance company(s).
Contact Zweben Law Group to make sure your legal rights are protected.
For more information on the contents of this article or any other question you may have, please contact Zweben Law Group at (877) 223-5454.