Over the past few decades, the use of vehicles has been on the rise. More and more people are turning away from the good old’ fashion walking and opting to drive a car. This shift can be attributed to many factors like convenience, crime rates, distance, or temperature. Walking to a certain destination might take longer, a person may feel safer in the comfort of their car, or it might be too hot outside to even consider walking, especially in Miami. Even though vehicles are more convenient, with its increase of usage, there has been a surge in car collisions.
The most obvious reason for a rise in vehicle crashes is that more cars are in circulation, but another relevant cause is the increase of distractions. Many drivers do not realize how they put their own lives and the lives of others in danger when they are distracted doing something else rather than paying attention to how they are driving. Trying to comprehend how 1.3 million people die from a car crash every year is just an inexplicable idea.
Miami is a city with many terrible drivers. In fact, Miami-Dade County is in the top five counties of the most car crashes throughout the United States. What a bad name to have pinned on it. A great amount of car accident victims have presented themselves to attorneys at Percy Martinez Law Firm for help and guidance. The firm has successfully recovered for these victims in need in Miami. People are living fast lives and do not take their time to reach their destinations, although it is an element that could save their lives.
Car collisions occur on daily basis. Once a driver steps foot in their vehicle they must act reasonably and careful while traveling on the road. In order to reduce the possibility of becoming a vehicle collision victim, the drivers need to use all of their senses fully. Although a driver may take all preventative measures, they still have to be careful with the other drivers out there. Another driver might be the cause for a car accident even though the driver that is not at-fault was driving in accordance with the road laws.
Reasons for Motorist Accidents
Why do so many accidents occur? As mentioned above, distractions and the fact that there are more vehicles on the road are two main reasons for more crashes. Let’s examine the reasons why so many accidents occur below:
Breaking the Law
When a person breaks the law while driving, they are acting recklessly. Actions like driving under the influence, speeding, taking a red light, not stopping at stop signs, failing to yield, and even illegal U-turns are all forms of breaking traffic laws. Traffic laws have been established to ensure the safety of every driver, but when they are broken, severe consequences like vehicle accidents can happen.
Negligent driving is the main reason for car accidents. The advancement of technology has been beneficial, but it has also created more risks for drivers. A big issue is the use of cellphones. Drivers cannot keep their hands off of their mobile device. They are becoming distracted with trying to text, call, visit their social media website, and even trying to watch videos on YouTube. The second they use their eyes to look at their cellphone and their hand to grab it, that can be the moment an accident occurs. It only takes a split second to become a victim of a motorist crash. Along with cellphone use, negligent acts like putting make-up on, talking to other passengers in the vehicle, eating or drinking, arguing, or listening to the radio are other negligent acts that may cause a car crash. A person might not even think that some of these actions are considered negligent, but they are. Anything that distracts a person from driving at a 100% performance is considered negligent.
Poor Road Design
In some vehicle accidents, poor road design could be the contributing factor in the crash. Perhaps the designer made the road unsafe with their design, or the construction working did not properly construct the road, no matter what mistake was done, those in charge of constructing, designing, and maintaining the roads must do so while providing reasonable care. Liability can fall on top of any of these parties that fail to do their jobs accordingly and cause the safety of others to change to danger. Some common poor road designs include:
- Hazards on the road (branches, dead animals, pot holes, plastic bags)
- Improperly designed road objects (curbs, medians, barriers, speed bumps)
- Lack of elevation or too much steepness in embankments
- Lack of or limited visibility of street signs (sharp turns, stop signs, traffic lights, animal crossings)
Product liability refers to the vehicle itself being the cause of the accident. When the vehicle has a malfunctioning part or designed improperly, the manufacturer could be found liable to pay for the resulting damages. When a product liability claim surfaces because of a car accident, the plaintiff must prove the following:
- That the car itself or a part of the car was “unreasonably dangerous”
- The vehicle was not being operated in any other way than the intended way
- The performance of the vehicle was not different since it was bought
A product liability claim can be brought for defective parts like brakes, engines, seat belts, air bags, and more.
Every car accident has its story. In order to proceed with a claim after a car accident, a throughout investigations needs to be done to figure out what caused the accident. The lawyers in Miami at Percy Martinez Law Firm can help their clients learn what was the cause of their accident.
Types of Car Accidents That Can Occur
There are different kinds of vehicle collisions that can happen. A driver might be involved in a single-vehicle crash or a multiple-vehicle crash. Below will be described different types of crashes that can happen:
Head-on crashes: Head-on collisions tend to lead to fatalities. These collisions are as described, they happen when the front of one vehicle collides with the front of another vehicle. These crashes often happen when a car swerves into upcoming traffic from another lane.
Rear-end crashes: Rear-end crashes could be minor just as they could be severe. People love following too closely to the other vehicle in front. Drivers to not like to maintain a safe distance between their car and the car in front. When not enough distance is placed between both cars, the driver does not have enough time to brake if the vehicle in front slows down or suddenly brakes. Typically, the driver who rear-ended the other car would be held liable, but in rare cases, the driver in the front might be found liable if they were not following traffic laws or braked for no reason. The injury that tends to surface the most from this accident is whiplash.
Side-impact crashes: These crashes are often referred to as “T-bone” crashes. This accident occurs when the front or back of a car hits either the drivers side or the passenger side of another car. The driver or passengers of the vehicle that is impacted may suffer severe injuries because the force of the crash is directly on top of them. When a person does not stop at a stop sign as they should, this type of accident could occur when another car is traveling across.
Sideswipe crashes: Sideswipe crashes usually do not result in severe injuries or damages unless the drivers lose control of their vehicle. This accident happens when two cars that are traveling side-by-side touch.
Rollover crashes: Rollover crashes are very frightening and hazardous. When a vehicle rolls over on its roof or side, anyone in the car can be gravely injured and even die as a result. Some cars tend to roll over more than others, especially vehicles that have a high center of gravity like sports utility vehicles. When these vehicles do sharp turns at high speeds, they can easily flip over.
Cross-traffic crashes: Cross-traffic crashes happen during intersections. Some common intersection collisions are left-turn accidents. When a driver arrives at an intersection, they should be extra cautious and pay attention to the traffic signs.
Single-vehicle crashes: Single-vehicle crashes occur when only one car is involved in the accident. Sometimes, a driver may lose control of their vehicle and end up hitting the median, swerving into a tree, hitting a fence, hitting a wall, or even as bad as hitting an innocent bystander. Pedestrians, passengers and the drivers of these vehicles can sustain severe injuries.
Multiple-vehicle crashes: Multiple-vehicle crashes happen when more than one car is involved in an accident. When these accidents occur, a vehicle could be hit more than once by multiple vehicles, resulting in further harm. These crashes are very serious and can cause extensive damage. Multiple-vehicle crashes are often seen on freeways and highways.
Gathered Information On Vehicle Collision Frequency and Mortality Rates
The following statistics are given by the NHTSA regarding Florida in the year 2015:
- There was a total of 2,939 traffic fatalities
- There was a total of 1,463 passenger fatalities
- There was a total of 320 speed-related deaths
- There was a total of 797 alcohol-related deaths
- There was a total of 616 motorcyclists deaths
- There was a total of 628 pedestrian deaths
- 1,600 deaths were from a single-vehicle accident
- 1,011 deaths were at an intersection
- Miami-Dade County ranked number one for vehicle fatalities with 340 deaths
Motor Vehicle Accident Case Settlements
In 2015, a head-on crash left a man with broken bones, a collapsed lung, a shattered jaw, and the inability to have children. A pick-up truck was driving into upcoming traffic and hit the 27-year old man vehicle’s front with full force. The man was awarded $47.5 million.
Vehicle vs. Motorcycle
In 2011, a vehicle drove right in front of a motorcyclist. The motorcyclist suffered severe injuries, leaving him paraplegic. The motorcyclist obtained $18.8 million in compensation.
A rear-end crash left an 11-year old girl paralyzed from the waist down in Cape Coral, FL. The car behind did not slow down as their vehicle slowed down during a crosswalk. The use of cell phone was found to have been the cause of the vehicle not slowing down. Four years later, the girl was awarded $12.2 million.
Running Red Light
In 2012, a pick-up truck ran a red light and hit a vehicle. The driver of the vehicle endured a severe brain injury causing him to require care almost all the time. He was in a coma for about a mother after the accident. He was awarded $7.5 million.
A fatal accident occurred in Hendry County. A married couple was hit head-on while in their motorcycle by an SUV. The couple were died instantly at the scene. They were both found not wearing helmets. The personal representative of the family was awarded $6.5 million.
A man was run over by a large commercial truck in 2016. He was fortunate enough to survive but sustained severe injuries. The man had his hips and pelvis crushed, his kidney was ruptured, and his spleen was ruptured. The man was attempting to cross when the truck took the red light. The man was awarded $6 million.
Frequently Asked Questions on Motorists Collisions
Here are the most common questions that are asked pertaining to motor vehicle crashes.
What do I do after I was involved in an accident?
The most important thing to do after a vehicle collision is to make sure that everyone is okay. The driver needs to check on the condition of anyone in their vehicle and then check for any injuries in the other vehicle involved. The police should be notified of the accident so that an accident report can be created. If everyone is okay, then the vehicles should be moved to the side so it is not blocking traffic and creating a hazard for other drivers. Another important issue is gathering information of those involved in the crash and any witnesses that were present during the crash. Their testimonies will help when thinking about filing a claim.
Even if I suffered only a minor injury, should I still go the doctor?
The simple answer to this question is yes. Any person who was injured in any way after an accident should seek medical assistance. A person might not start to feel pain days after an accident took place. Because symptoms can project themselves sometime after an accident, those involved in a car crash need to be seen by a physician. Also, having documentation that the driver/s went to the doctor proves that they were injured by the accident and not by something else irrelevant to the accident.
What rewards can I receive from the at fault driver?
For the most part, the at-fault driver will have to pay for the damages that they caused. The injured party could receive specific damages and general damages. How much a person will obtain from a lawsuit depends on how bad their injuries were. If they were unable to work, have many medical bills, lost a loved one, sustained damage to their car or any other damages received due to the accident are viable reasons to be compensated for.
Can my medical treatment be paid by my health insurance?
A person’s health insurance does not get affected when the fault of the accident was due to another person. If the plaintiff wins the claim, then their health insurance company may be able to be reimbursed for the expenses they made in paying the medical bills.
What if I find myself with an accident against an uninsured motorist?
This situation has many outcomes. For instance, if a driver purchased uninsured motorist coverage, then under their own policy they would be covered for a person who has no insurance. If the driver is operating a vehicle through work but does not have their own insurance, then the employer might be the one liable to pay for the damages.
When is the best time to settle a case?
A case should never be settled before having sought medical assistance. Even if a person may think they are not injured, an underlying injury may surface sometime after the vehicle crash. A person should know the exact extent of their damages before deciding on doing anything. In addition, the victim should seek the help of a lawyer to determine the settlement that is most appropriate.
Miami Vehicle Collision Attorneys Aiding Victims
Experiencing a vehicle crash is just devastating. The thought of not knowing what could happen when you get behind a wheel can be scary. Many people do not take their own life and other’s life into consideration when they are driving. Drivers are trying to do their daily activities while maneuvering a vehicle which is extremely reckless and negligent. Why can’t they wait a few more minutes to answer their texts? Those extra minutes can save their lives.Being a victim of a car accident can leave those involved traumatized for the remainder of their lives. Our Miami personal injury attorneys are dedicated to the victims that have undergone a motorist accident. No other law firm will show the compassion and commitment that this firm expresses on a daily basis towards their clients in Miami, Florida.
RELATED VEHICLE LAWYER SERVICES
RELATED TYPES OF ACCIDENTS
- Head On Collision
- Side Impact
- Rear End Collision
- Hit and Run
- Highway Defects
- Reckless Driving
- Drunk Driving
- Speeding Accidents
- Chain Accident
- Mechanical Failure
- Driver Error
- Car Defects
- Poor road Design