4 Common Causes of Car Accident Fatalities

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Thousands of people die from car accidents in the country every year. In 2019, it was estimated that over 36,000 people died as a result of a road accident costing over $242 billion per year in associated costs according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.

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The sad part is that, in most cases, these deaths could’ve been easily avoided if the driver was more responsible or ready for the risks. Knowing why fatal accidents happen is the first step in preventing them. Here are some of the most common causes for car accident fatalities in the United States.

Distracted Driving

You might be surprised to learn that distracted driving is the number one cause of car crashes in the United States. It’s estimated that anywhere between 25% and 50% of accidents are caused by distracted drivers. Distractions can be anything from using a smartphone to arguing with someone in the vehicle.

Which drivers are most likely to be in a deadly crash? In this case, drivers between the age of 15 to 20 are the most susceptible. This is mainly because young drivers are more inclined to use their smartphones or other devices while driving.

Speeding

Speeding continues to be one of the leading causes of car accidents in the country. According to the NHSTA, 9,378 people were killed due to speeding in 2019 alone. Speeding has always been an issue, and even if 2020 was a down year for driving, it has been estimated the number of drivers going over 80 miles increased through much of the year according to data analytics firm Arity.

Driving Under the Influence

DUIs are also a recurring issue on the roads and are one of the main causes of fatal car accidents. Impaired driving was responsible for almost a third of all fatal car accidents in 2018. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is extremely dangerous as it affects reaction times, judgment, and alertness. People who drive under the influence don’t only put themselves at risk, but passengers, other drivers, and pedestrians.

Poor Maneuvering

Some factors have to do with the driver’s habits. One of the most common causes for fatal accidents is improperly merging into lanes. According to the NHTSA, bad lane changes are responsible for about 18% of all accidents on our roads. Many still don’t follow the proper procedure of signaling and checking blind spots before switching lanes. Not properly yielding the right of way is another very common cause for collisions during lane changes.

However, while in some cases the driver is at fault, there are also cases where bad lane changes are caused by something else, like someone sleeping at the wheel or suffering a heart attack.

These are some of the biggest causes of fatal accidents in the United States. Make sure that you notice if you are guilty of any of these and what you can do today to become a safer driver not only for yourself but the whole community.

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What to do if You Get Involved in a car Accident – A Guide For Teens

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As a teenager, you are probably most excited when you get to drive your car for the first time – a feeling of excitement and happiness that can be a bit hard to explain. Nonetheless, it is also the best time to get familiar with your rights and laws related to personal injury and road accidents in the USA.

Now, we don’t mean to scare you, but the truth is that accidents can happen anywhere and anytime. Sometimes, we don’t have control over things, and more specifically, we don’t have control over others actions. The only thing that we have control over is our reactions to other’s actions and our instant circumstances.

Suppose you encounter a car accident while you are driving back home from a friend’s party. You might also get accidentally indulged in a car accident where your car gets hit by another car. Whatever the circumstances are, instead of panicking, the following are things that you can do if you get involved in a car accident. Read on to learn more.

Calm Your Mind and Yourself

Suppose you and your vehicle get involved in a car accident. The first thing you need to do is calm yourself and get in a better state of mind. As human beings, we experience a wide range of emotions, such as guilt, anger, frustration, shock, and nervousness.

That said, instead of freaking out, you need to understand that you have a serious matter at hand. Therefore, you need to focus on calming down. You can start taking deep breaths so that your heart rate slows down and your mind relaxes a bit.

Some people even count to ten to calm their nerves and assess the situation. Don’t overreact, and don’t start to fight and argue with other people. Also, don’t start explaining yourself. Firstly, you need to calm down and assess the graveness of the situation before reacting to it.

Safety is Essential

After you have calmed down, park your car on the side of the road and make sure that you and other people are safe. If you see someone injured, call the ambulance straight away and try to give first-aid, if required. If the situation doesn’t allow you to get out of the car, keep your seatbelt fastened and turn on the car hazard lights.

Subsequently, call the police and inform the ambulance about the accident. Nonetheless, if there are no injuries and the car is in good condition, make sure to park it on the side so that no traffic gets blocked.

Contact Your Lawyer

Instead of arguing with the other party or explaining yourself to the police, gather witnesses. The best thing to do is take down (take a picture) the license plates of all vehicles involved in the accident. Collect all sorts of evidence that can be later represented at the court and to the insurance company. Rest assured, remain calm and silent after you have called your attorney. Lawyers are legal experts who know the complex laws around different situations. They will take up your case and make sure that you get out of trouble in the best way possible.

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Must Have Traits of A Good Lawyer

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When you’re dealing with a personal injury or accident in the USA, you’re often forced to find legal representation. For better or for worse, most of us have never had to hire an attorney, much less a personal injury lawyer. What makes someone a good lawyer? What are the must have traits for a good lawyer?

Responsiveness

You may find people recommending attorneys based on their compassion and empathy. However, that doesn’t help you if they don’t respond to your requests for information or advice. For example, building rapport on the first meeting doesn’t matter if you can’t reach them afterward. Responsiveness is essential. Do they make appointments as soon as possible, or do they make you wait? Do they respond to phone calls and emails as quickly as they can instead of leaving you in limbo for several days?

A good way to gauge attorneys in this area is to read customer reviews. Take the time to read the negative reviews. Do people complain that they spent days waiting for returned calls or weeks to get paperwork back?

Expertise

You can’t afford for your case to be handled by someone unfamiliar with personal injury law. Furthermore, there are several niches in personal injury law that is best handled by someone with experience in that area. Medical malpractice and trucking accident cases are two such examples. Failing to get the necessary documentation lined up or not finding the right expert witnesses can put your case in jeopardy. Someone who regularly personal injury cases may know how to total up the damages associated with a car wreck or traumatic brain injury incurred to date but not how to properly predict future associated costs. Work with experts like the experienced team at Baumgartner law firm.

One way to gauge their expertise is to learn about the certifications and specializations they have. Another is to ask about the percentage of cases they win. If they have roughly 50-50 odds, you should look for someone who wins most cases that they take. You should also ask how much they settle cases like yours for. You don’t want to work with an attorney who often settles for less just to get a payday and say they won the case.

We’d rate expertise as more important than experience. However, someone straight out of school lacks the expertise to handle your case because their knowledge is theoretical. If you’re talking to a senior attorney in the initial consultation, ask who will actually be doing the work. Don’t let yourself be impressed by a senior attorney who passes you off to someone who hardly knows what they are doing.

Effective Communication

Suppose you have an attorney who is responsive. This doesn’t mean they’re good communicators. Too many lawyers try to project an image of competence and end up looking elitist. They hide behind legal jargon and complexity in an effort to impress you. In reality, they may or may not be competent. However, you need someone who is an effective communicator. It isn’t enough that they can argue your case in front of a judge or file the right paperwork with an insurance company. Can they effectively communicate with you?

You can gauge this at your first meeting. Can they explain how they’ll handle your case? Can they explain in terms you understand what your case is worth and what is expected of you? If they tell you to simply sit back and do what you’re told, find someone else.

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Driver’s Checklist: What You Should Do If You Get Pulled Over By The Police

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Picture this: you’re on the road, and you may have a lot of things going on inside your head. Or you’re in a hurry because you’re running late for an event or meeting. Maybe, you’re just thinking of a lot of things, when you suddenly get pulled over by the police. What do you do, then?                        

If you do get pulled over by the police in the USA, you need to know how to handle this kind of situation properly. You have to bear in mind that everything you say and how you act towards the police officer may drastically affect your future.                                  

So, if you ever experience being pulled over by the police, here are the things you should do:

Acknowledge the police officer

When you see a police officer signaling you to pull over, the first thing you should do is to keep calm. Turn on your lane signals and safely pull over to the side. Quickly pulling over doesn’t mean you are already admitting that you did something wrong, it just means that you respect and straightaway acknowledge the authority of the officer.

Remain in your vehicle, unless you are told otherwise

After making a stop, make sure that you stay in the car unless you are told to do otherwise. Once you get out of your vehicle after pulling over, you are giving the officer the impression that you’re uncooperative, or you’re hiding something in your car. Instead of leaving your vehicle, just turn off your engine, roll down your windows, place both hands on the wheel. If you get pulled over at night, turn on your dome lights so the police officer can see you easily. Do not reach for your driver’s license or anything yet until you are requested to do so. It might imply that you are getting a weapon and cause the police officer to be alarmed.   

Good read: Police Traffic Stops: The Do’s, Don’ts and Musts

Amicably converse

Being nervous or panicking while talking will not give a good impression to the police officer. Make sure that you are relaxed and talk to the officer nicely. Show respect and answer all the questions and information requested of you, unless you feel the problem is unnecessary. Do not interrupt when the officer is talking. Some lawyers state that there are police officers who only base their decision to charge you on your actions. Rude behavior will most likely merit a violation. Keep your answers short and precise.

You have the right to refuse

If the police officer requests to search your car, you have the right to refuse, especially if you are just being given a traffic violation. But if the officer has foreseen a reason to search like smelling or seeing something off, the officer can request to do so. Remember, refuse politely and do not get tense or anxious. 

Refrain from Arguing

If you feel that you have been wrongfully charged, don’t argue or get angry at the police officer as it might backfire to you even if you didn’t do anything wrong. Accept the ticket and bring it to the court for your legal concerns. And if you are wrongfully charged with severe cases such as driving with the influence of alcohol, you may get help from best tampa lawyer Dennis Hernandez to help you get through with the situation.              

DENNIS HERNANDEZ

Dennis started practicing law at just 23 years old. He obtained his undergraduate degree from Duke University and continued to earn law degrees from Florida State University College of Law and Harvard Law School. Blessed with multiple associations, memberships and awards, Dennis graduated from the Trial Lawyers College. Mr. Hernandez is one of only 1,378 attorneys who claim this distinction. In 1996, he founded firm Dennis Hernandez & Associates, P.A., which concentrates in the areas of personal injury, medical malpractice and product liability. Dennis is admitted to practice law in all State of Florida courts, The Supreme Court of the United States, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh District, U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, and the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.

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What you should do during and after an accident to pave the way for filing a personal injury claim?

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Vehicle accidents can be very unsettling and often have devastating effects on the affected persons depending on the intensity. You might become disoriented at the sudden shock and just unable to think about what would be the most appropriate action to put back things on the track. Although it takes some time to get back on your feet, soon after, you must take stock of the situation to evaluate the damages and work out a plan about what you must do to ensure that you can file a claim for personal injury.

In this article, we will help you to understand what you must do at the scene of the accident and after that.

Care for the injured

Saving lives is most important, and you must act fast to arrange for medical help and assistance for those injured in the accident. Try not to move them and keep them warm while providing some first aid and keep a watch on their condition to decide about the next course of action. Call for an ambulance for anyone with serious injuries that might require immediate hospitalization.

Call the police

Unless the accident is too minor that does not necessitate filing a personal injury claim, you must call the police at the earliest, especially if there are injuries, and the damages are substantial. The police will record the incident and provide a report, which is a vital document for personal injury claim settlement. Share all information about the incident with the police and ask for the incident number allotted to your case.

Gather more information

Obtain all personal information of the driver involved in the accident like his name, address, phone number, date of birth, license number, insurance validity date, and name of the insurance company. Collect details of all the vehicles involved in the accident like license plate numbers, vehicle models, and year of make.

Note down the details of passengers and witnesses to the accident. Request them to speak to the police to record their version of the incident. If they are unable to stay back to talk to the police, gather all information from them about what they saw and write it down for future reference.

Talk to the witnesses about their willingness to join the investigation. If there is anyone who saw the accident but moved on without waiting, you must try to collect the license plate details of that vehicle.

What to do when you return home

 After coming back to your home, call your family physician for your injuries.  To understand your rights, obligations, and options regarding personal injury claim contact with the best injury law firm in Halifax Nova Scotia and fix an appointment for a free consultation.  Contact your insurance company and ask them to send you the accident benefits forms and submit it to them at the soonest. 

Once you fix a lawyer, he or she will take care of everything and guide you through the process of filing a personal injury claim by complying with all legal requirements, including meeting the timelines for filing.

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How does a personal injury lawyer manage a car accident case?

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Law and order have multiple facets that a layperson is not aware of. Apart from advocates and public prosecutors, there are also personal injury attorneys. These lawyers are known as civil litigators who represent their clients. Generally, they are also known as plaintiffs, who allege psychological and physical injuries that are the result of another person’s negligence, cruelty, or irresponsibility. The harm can impact a person, company, agency, or a government agency as well.

Understanding a personal attorney profile

A personal injury lawyer in the USA manages private or civic injuries or other wrongdoings. They also look into non-monetary and monetary damages. Additionally, they take care of legal cases related to defamation or a breach of contract to a person’s property, reputation, or rights or reputation. These attorneys can practice most facets of the law. However, they usually manage legal cases that come under tort law. It refers to accidents that get caused because of slips, falls, work injuries, inferior quality products, road accidents, and many more. To know more about this, you can get in touch with Los Angeles personal injury attorney Gilbert A. Moret.

Usually, most personal injury attorneys help clients to attain the deserved compensation for their losses, which had occurred. The casualties include the incapability to carry on with their daily course of life, a temporary halt in their earning ability, or any long-lasting pain or suffering. It further adds in expenses that can get added for emotional distress, loss of companionship, attorney charges as well as legal costs.

The way a personal injury lawyer remedies a car accident

Personal injury attorneys are capable of assisting multiple clients in tackling their losses emerging out of a car accident. Car accidents occur daily, and it is one of the most common legal cases that these lawyers take up. First, the personal injury lawyer speaks with the client and length to know the details about the accident. The lawyer also demonstrates the process of claims to their clients. And after that, the lawyer needs to get a couple of things done. They are:

  • Obtain the liability and damage proof to help in the client claim process
  • Analyze the client’s vehicle insurance policy and check the coverage which can get used for paying the lost income, medical expenses, and other costs
  • Work with the client’s health insurance policy on the claim notice

Once all these get done, the lawyer will commence the initial round of car accident investigations to address the client’s claims. And this process might include communicating with the witnesses on the scene, gathering physical evidence as well as photographing the accident crime scene is as many details as possible to assess the more delicate nuances which otherwise might go missing. The lawyer shares all his relevant finding at the court, where he tries his best to get the compensation and justice for his client.

However, all this is possible when you join hands with an expert personal injury lawyer. You can connect with one online today. Before you decide on your lawyer, make sure you have asked the queries you have to make the correct choice.

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