It probably doesn’t surprise many of us that motor vehicle accidents happen all the time. However, the number of accidents that result in serious injuries or even fatalities is staggering. The most recent data available from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that there were 32,675 traffic fatalities in 2014. In 2013, there were about 6,337 accidents daily. That’s an improvement from 2013, but the numbers are still frighteningly high, and in November of last year, they were projected to show an overall increase in 2015.
Though traffic laws are in place to protect the safety of the general public from unsafe drivers and to discipline those unsafe drivers, accidents are clearly still occurring. Some of the most common traffic violations leading to crashes include:
Sometimes the only consequence of speeding is an expensive speeding ticket. However, because speeding is so dangerous (more so than people might initially assume), a ticket is not usually all that results. As per the NHTSA, speeding contributed to 29 percent of all traffic fatalities in 2014.
According to the NHTSA, drunk drivers were involved in 31 percent of all traffic fatalities in 2014. Billions of dollars are spent each year on medical bills and legal matters such as settlements or lawsuits due to impaired driving accidents.
Red light violations
As per the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, approximately 2,000 people are injured and around 900 people die each year from red light violations. These statistics cannot stress the importance enough of considering how great the risk of running a red light is compared to the so-called consequence of waiting for it to turn green again.
In an age where technology, particularly cellular devices, are prevalent, distracted driving is becoming an increasingly bigger issue. According to federal estimates, around 16% of all fatal crashes involve distracted driving, which equates to approximately 5,000 deaths every year. The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) reports that when someone texts while driving, their eyes are away from the road for about 5 seconds. If the person is driving at a speed of 55mph, they will have covered the distance of a football field without looking. From these statistics alone, it is clear that distracted driving is an extremely serious issue.
According to the NHTSA, at least 28% of all collisions are rear-end collisions. Most people who are injured in motor vehicle accidents are injured in rear-end collisions. These kinds of accidents most commonly occur because drivers are distracted, the road conditions are poor, or drivers are not leaving enough space between themselves and the car in front of them.
What to Do If You’ve Been Injured
- Call 911. Ask for both police and an ambulance. Police will document the nature of the accident, and paramedics will document your condition. That’s the first medical record in your case.
- Ask to be transported to the emergency room. More thorough examinations will be performed there, and additional records documenting your injuries will be made. Don’t delay this process. Insurance companies love gaps in treatment.
- Thoroughly follow all discharge instructions, including referrals to any other physicians.
- Keep your own documentation of the accident and the events following in case you or your lawyer need to refer to it later.
- Contact a qualified personal injury lawyer.
When You Need a Personal Injury Lawyer
It is not uncommon for victims of accidents caused by drivers who commit these or other traffic violations to need a personal injury attorney. They may need assistance in their claims for damages involving medical bills, lost earnings, permanent disability, and other damages. It is important to find a personal injury lawyer that has extensive experience in handling motor vehicle crash cases so that you receive the compensation you deserve. A good personal injury lawyer will:
- Determine what medical records and other documents are important in your case
- Know when experts are needed to testify and who those experts are
- Necessary court procedures
- The rules of evidence
- Tactics of insurance companies and insurance lawyers
If you’ve sustained a serious injury, having a good lawyer by your side is much easier than trying to navigate through any legal issues on your own.
Our lawyers here at Tate Late Group have many years of experience dealing with personal injuries caused by traffic violations. Feel free to contact us so we can help ensure your life after your injury can return to normal as quickly as possible.