Articles Tagged with car accident

The-5-Most-Common-Accidents-scaledAlthough the last thing anyone wants is to be the victim of an accident, mishaps are part of life. To better safeguard you and your loved ones, it is imperative to be aware of the most prevalent types of accidents. Below, the Dietrich Law Firm P.C.’s team of personal injury lawyers has listed the most frequently occurring accidents along with crucial tips to avoid them: 

  1. Car Crashes: According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), an estimated 42,915 victims suffered fatal collisions last year. The most significant annual percentage increase in reporting history. Most car accidents are caused by distracted driving, drunk driving, speeding, and weather conditions. You can avoid severe collisions by always driving prudently and defensively, staying focused on the road, adapting to changing driving conditions, and never getting behind the wheel while under the influence.
  2. Slip and Fall Accidents: In a recent year alone, fall-related accidents accounted for more than eight million emergency room visits. Most fall injuries occur at ground level and commonly result in broken bones, such as hip or wrist fractures. You can avoid most falls by taking your time, wearing appropriate footwear, and staying attentive. Slips are more likely to take place when you rush, ignore where you are stepping, or wear the wrong type of shoes. 

Statute-of-Limitations-scaledSuppose that you, or a family member, have been injured in an accident caused by another person’s negligence or recklessness. You may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit. Pursuing a case against the responsible party could be your only means to recover compensation. However, you only have a limited time to file your claim. The deadline is known as the statute of limitations (SOL). The statute of limitations, like a countdown, can significantly impact when or even if you can pursue your case. Regardless of the strength of your claim, when the statute of limitations runs out, your case will be considered time-barred. Meaning the defendant can assert that the statute of limitations has run out and ask the court to dismiss the lawsuit on that basis alone.

The Purpose Of The Statute Of Limitations

The statute of limitations are laws that establish a maximum duration from the date of the incident that a victim must commence legal proceedings. These laws are based on the principle of fairness and apply to criminal and civil cases. Over time, evidence is improperly preserved, memories tend to fade, and witnesses start to disappear. People move on with their lives and do not expect to be sued for accidents long ago. Some crimes, such as murder in the 1st degree and treason, are so horrendous that they cannot be time-barred. 

Dangerous-time-to-drive-scaledDriving is the most dangerous activity the average American performs multiple times daily. When most people get behind the wheel, the thought of getting into a car accident never even crosses their minds. Drivers are more focused on reaching their destinations quickly. However, motorists are exposed to varying risks during their commutes depending on the time of day, day of the week, and time of the year. While the last thing any driver wants is to be seriously injured in a crash, car accidents are a part of driving.

The Riskiest Times For Driving

Independence Day and New Year’s Day have historically been the most dangerous days for Americans to be on the road. Even though collisions can occur daily, at any time, accidents are much more rampant at certain hours on specific days of the week. Additionally, the following times and days are the most dangerous:

Slipped-Disc-Blog-scaledThe human spine comprises 33 vertebrae, each separated by a spongy member referred to as a disc. Each spinal disc contains a jellylike nucleus encased in a rubbery exterior called an annulus. These discs act as shock absorbers and cushions for the spine. Back injuries are often excruciating and can make it difficult for victims to move. One of the most common back injuries is a slipped disc, also called a bulging or herniated disc. As many as 2 percent of adults throughout the United States suffer from slipped discs each year. This type of injury occurs when a portion of the nucleus pushes out through a tear in the exterior. While any spine segment can suffer a slipped disc, most occur in the lower back. When left untreated, herniated discs can potentially cause permanent and life-altering complications. 

Common Causes Of Slipped Disc Injuries

Our discs gradually become more rigid and susceptible to ripping open and rupturing as we age. Consequently, many victims suffer herniated discs from excessive spinal rotation or improper lifting of heavy objects. During an accident, a victim’s body can also be subjected to violent forces that cause the delicate spinal discs to be badly damaged, strained, or thrown out of place. Spinal injuries also commonly result from devastating accidents. Personal injury accidents that frequently cause slipped discs include:

Woman-with-headache-scaledVictims of even minor car accidents often complain about headaches. Headaches suffered after a collision are commonly referred to as post-traumatic headaches because they result from the trauma. Accident victims may suffer head pain immediately, but it is not uncommon for headaches to start several hours or days after a collision. These headaches are often excruciating and debilitating. In addition to the severe pain, headaches can also be a symptom of concussions or traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). It is essential to remember that the severity is not always dependent on the seriousness of the collision. Ravaging and crippling headaches can even arise from low-impact accidents.

Common Causes Of Headaches

Victims of car accidents regularly endure chronic headaches due to the trauma suffered to their head or neck. This can be a violent jolt, direct blow to the head, intense shaking of the skull, or even a forceful strike to the body that causes the victim’s brain to slam against the interior walls of the skull. After a crash, the most prevalent triggers of headaches include:

Cement-Truck-scaledCement trucks transport wet cement to construct foundations, buildings, and driveways. When transporting cement, these massive trucks can weigh over 60,000 pounds. Since the weight of a concrete truck is disproportionately located in the mixing drum, these vehicles tend to be highly top-heavy. As a result, cement trucks have a rollover rate ten times higher than cars. When concrete truck drivers cause accidents, occupants of other vehicles risk suffering devastating injuries or worse. Every time a trucker slams on the brakes or makes a sharp turn, they place others in significant danger. Although collisions are bound to happen, many cement truck crashes occur because trucking companies, inattentive construction companies, or negligent truckers lack oversight.

Common Causes Of Cement Truck Collisions 

Most mixing trucks use pre-mixed wet concrete and other filling products. To prevent the concrete from hardening, it must be delivered quickly. This can place cement truck drivers under tremendous pressure to meet tight deadlines. Like other large truck accidents, concrete truck collisions frequently result from driver errors and insufficient maintenance. Some specific factors that regularly lead to cement truck accidents include:

Concussion-Blog-2
A mild form of traumatic brain injury (TBI) that affects the regular functioning of your brain is called a concussion. Although doctors may describe concussions as “mild” because they are not typically life-threatening, victims can still suffer severe effects from this brain injury. Adverse impacts are generally temporary but often include problems concentrating, trouble remembering, and difficulties with balance or coordination. Concussions can also create acute chemical changes in the brain and sometimes elongate or damage vital brain cells. While anyone can suffer a concussion, data suggests that young children and the elderly have the highest risk. 

The Most Common Causes Of Concussions

Concussions are often caused by a jolt, blow, or knock to the head or strike to the body that causes the victim’s brain to slam rapidly back and forth against the inner walls of the skull. Violent shaking of the head or upper body can also lead to a concussion. Any abrupt movement can cause a victim’s brain to twist or bounce around inside their head. Falls are by far the most prevalent cause of concussions. The unexpected acceleration or deceleration of the head resulting from personal injury accidents, such as car crashes, are likely to cause this type of head injury too. Concussions are widespread in contact sports, such as football, hockey, or soccer. According to estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), up to 3.8 million sports and recreation-related concussions happen throughout the United States each year.  

Comparative-Negligence-Blog-scaledLiability in personal injury cases is often unclear and ambiguous. This is because a defendant may not be entirely responsible for the accident. It is not uncommon for plaintiffs to be partially at-fault too. Fortunately, victims may still be eligible to recover compensation for their damages even if they were partly to blame. When applying the legal doctrine of comparative negligence, also known as comparative fault, a plaintiff that contributed to their accident would still be awarded compensation for their damages. However, the total amount would be reduced based on their share of fault. Whether you have been hurt in a car crash, construction accident, slip and fall, or any other mishap, comparative negligence can significantly impact the compensation you obtain. 

Common Comparative Fault Claims

When a defendant can successfully demonstrate that the plaintiff shared some responsibility for an accident, they will not have to pay the full jury award. Consequently, comparative negligence is one of the most prevalent affirmative defenses raised in personal injury litigation. Some situations where plaintiffs might be considered comparatively negligent include:

Young-Woman-Testifies-In-Court-scaledSuppose you or a loved one have suffered devastating injuries in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence. In that case, you must understand all of the legal options available to recover damages. Although accident victims have the right to take their injury claims to court under New York law, most lawsuits get settled without going to trial. Contrary to what most people think, only about 3 percent of all cases go to court. 

When hospital bills and other expenses are piling up, and a victim is not getting paid because they cannot work, it can be highly tempting to take the insurance company’s first settlement offer. However, insurance adjusters often try to exploit victims by offering lowball settlements. Before accepting any offer, discussing your case with a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer is imperative to ensure that you maximize your compensation.

Negotiations And Settlement Offers

Automobile-Defect-Blog-scaledAccording to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), in a recent year alone, there were over 1,040 motor vehicle crash-related deaths throughout New York State. Although defective vehicles and components commonly contribute to or significantly worsen many car accidents, most victims never even realize it. Collisions involving automobile defects are typically caused by dangerous vehicle designs, substandard components, and other manufacturing errors. All car designers and manufacturers have a legal duty to ensure their vehicles’ safety before marketing them to the public. This duty requires car makers to carefully inspect their vehicles for defects that could unnecessarily harm consumers. Unfortunately, some of the most prominent car companies fail to examine their vehicles adequately. Many manufacturers have even known about critical deficiencies but tried to conceal them from the public. 

Most Common Types Of Car Defects

For an automobile to function correctly, thousands of electrical, hydraulic, and mechanical components must operate together. When even the most minor part malfunctions, the outcome can be catastrophic. For example, if faulty brake pads fail as a truck nears a red light, the truck could T-Bone another vehicle. Some frequently occurring instances of automobile defects include: 

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