Car accidents are one of the leading causes of death and serious injury in the United States. With the loss of thousands of lives and millions of injuries of a severe and even permanent nature each year. Victims and their families often need to endure suffering that goes beyond the accident—pain and suffering is only a small part of what families must face. The loss of earnings, emotional distress, property damage, and substantial medical expenses add to an already stressful situation. In the case of a fatal accident, unexpected funeral expenses and permanent changes in income add even more stress to the situation. It doesn’t matter what the cause of the accident is—the consequences will have a lifelong detrimental impact if the victim even survives the accident.
The statistics the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports is quite alarming to say the least. They report that a car accident occurs every ten seconds in the United States and even more alarming is the fact that car accidents are the leading cause of death for those between 7 and 27 years old. In addition more than half of all fatal accidents occur in areas where speed limits are 55 miles per hour or above with alcohol contributing to more than one-third of all fatal accidents. Finally according to the World Health Organization, 2004 statistics reported a worldwide total of 1.2 million people are killed on the roads while approximately 48 million are injured. The statistics are staggering and continue to grow each year.
One of the problems surrounding the personal injury law, especially when it involves car accidents is you must prove that one of the drivers was negligent or failed to exercise “reasonable care.” In spite of those conditions, it is very difficult to prove who was really at fault in an accident even though at least 90 per cent of accidents are caused because of a driver’s carelessness. Differences in state laws can also complicate a personal injury case because even with the existence of no-fault laws in about half the states, those laws can be challenged when there is serious injury or excessive damage. In the remaining states the law holds the responsible party liable for all damages instead of just their own.
If you are involved in a car accident and feel it is the other person’s fault, you may wish to obtain a personal injury lawyer. In many cases your insurance company may provide a lawyer for you in the event you are sued, but you may want to make sure you have your own attorney if you suffer extensive damage or injury or have reason to believe the other driver will try to hold you responsible. One thing you do not want to do is leave the scene except for medical reasons and by all means call the police. Failing to follow the laws of accident reporting will make you not only look guilty but may also force you to answer to the court and pay a fine for leaving the scene of an accident.
Disclaimer: This article provided by Abrahamson, Uiterwyk and Barnes of Tampa, FL.