There are several types of car accidents that you may receive multiple types of injuries from, but the insurance company doesn’t care about you as much as you think that they do. Getting a reputable Car Accident Attorney in Ohio will be the best move you can make in attaining fair compensation for damages to your vehicle, as well as hospital bills, pain and suffering, and ongoing injuries that may continue for years after your accident.
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Car Accident Attorneys & Why the Insurance Company Don’t Want You To Hire One
Ohio currently operates under a comparative negligence law, which according to OhioInsurance.org says that “parties share the cost of damages from an accident in proportion to their share of negligence”. A couple of days after your accident, you’ll very likely get a call from the other drivers’ insurance company. Chances are they know you have a case against them, and that their driver was more at fault. They’re contacting you to try to get you to settle for the lowest amount that they can. The thing to do at this point is to say as little to them as possible.
Image from Huff Post.
If you haven’t already done so, this is the time to get the services of a reputable Car Accident Attorney. In a lot of cases, unless you were rear-ended, their insurance company is trying to find some way to blame that accident on you. Three important things to remember are number one, never admit that anything was your fault; number two, never sign anything; and number three, never consent to being recorded.
Insurance companies put on a fake smile after an accident for the accident victim, but it’s important that you remember that their ultimate goal is to run a successful business, i.e. make money. It’s sad to say, but they don’t really care about you or your injury all that much, and most of the time they’re being nice to you because they want you to settle as quickly as possible. Once you add up all of your hospital bills, lost work wages, etc., you’ll realize that the amount that they are trying to get you to settle for is nowhere near what you deserve, or what you’d get with the help of an experienced Car Accident Attorney. The insurance company knows that in most instances the victim doesn’t really have it on their mind to sue them, but a good Accident Attorney won’t hesitate to. There’s even a chance that your Auto Accident Lawyer may get double the amount you would have gotten on your own!
You also have to remember that the insurance company has a big team of lawyers, so why shouldn’t you? They’re way too powerful to face all by yourself, especially if you are injured after the accident. Here are the most common types of auto accidents and their associated injuries:
A large majority of the personal injury claims that folks make after car accidents involve rear-end collisions. These accidents happen for a number of reasons, ranging from inattention to distraction, and tailgating. It happens a lot in stop-and-go traffic, and, although these folks may not mean to do it, there are way too many instances every day where cars follow others to close on the busy highway. Even when driving at a really slow speed, your car can move a great distance forward when your attention is taken off the road for just a few seconds. The truth is, when sitting in busy traffic for long periods of time, the average adult feels the need to multitask while driving. So, they’ll get on their phone, eat, and do other things while behind the wheel, distractions that can cause them to rear-end someone before they even realize it.
Even though there are those vehicles out there that have lights and warnings in the dashboard that let you know when you’re traveling too close behind someone, drivers still need to pay attention to the road in front of them and the traffic around them, even if their car, truck or SUV has an automatic braking system. The Center for Accident Research and Road Safety was established in the mid-1990s, with the mission to “address the enormous human, economic and social costs resulting from road crashes”. Recently, Phys.org reported on some of the organization’s data. The information was collected to show the direct link between tailgating and rear-end collisions.
One of the researchers from the organization, Dr. Sebastien Demmel, explained their findings more clearly in one July 2017 article. “For the first time, tailgating has been conclusively linked with rear-end crashes, but we also identified queue jumping as the main reason for not keeping a safe distance,” he said.
The organization also found that there was a higher chance for rear-end crashes in urban populated areas, especially in those places where the speed limits are higher, generally over 60 miles per hour. It’s recommended that drivers keep a few seconds of distance between them and the vehicle they’re trailing, but the study showed that over 50% of drivers don’t normally do that. Data also showed that men are more likely than women to be in rear-end collisions because guys seem to take more risks when behind the wheel. Overall, it was found that two-thirds of drivers are not making a conscious effort to keep a safe distance between them and the car in front of them.
The injury that most people associate with rear-end collisions is whiplash. However, some experts say that ‘whiplash’ is a term that your Personal Injury Lawyer will probably avoid using. The word can represent a number of types of neck injuries and, according to Nolo, many Car Accident Lawyers feel that it is a term that widely represents fake accident claims, ones that dirty attorneys out there will use when they are trying to exaggerate a case of a neck injury. This is why your Accident Attorney may prefer to use the technical descriptions of your injury, such as a neck or cervical strain, or a hyperextension.
One may think that with these types of injuries the car that rear-ended another may have been traveling at a high speed, However, the truth is that in most cases these injuries are the result of accidents that happen when vehicles are moving slowly.
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Side impact collisions have a few names, but probably the most popular is a T-bone. Your Car Accident Lawyer may refer to this type of crash as a broadside collision. These accidents happen frequently in intersections, such as when a driver runs a red light or a stop sign. These accidents also can occur when a driver is switching lanes and not paying attention to vehicles in the lane that they are merging into, or pulls out in front of someone too quickly when the other person has the right of way. Because these accidents can often begin in a dispute as to who may be at fault, it is recommended that you hire a reputable Personal Injury Lawyer after an accident like this and that you don’t try to take on the insurance company by yourself.
According to Accident Values, one of the injuries that frequently occur after a side-impact collision is a traumatic brain injury or TBI. Their research indicates that motor vehicle accidents are the third leading cause of TBI. The cost of hospitalization for a TBI is normally over $8,000, even for minor cases of this type of injury. That number can easily double to well over $16,000 if the case is serious, and, in the most critical cases of TBI, accident victims have seen hospital bills of over $30,000. In addition to TBIs, auto accidents like these are also to blame for up to 80% of all types of chest injuries, including sternum and rib fractures.
In a recent and tragic example of what can happen in a T bone collision, an 83-year-old woman lost her life in July of 2017. Jane Leedy was driving on South Elyria Road and came up to the stop sign at the intersection at SR 226. She pulled out in front of an approaching vehicle that was headed west on that road (a vehicle that did not have a stop sign), and was hit hard in the driver side of her vehicle. Fox News 8 Cleveland reported that Leedy later died from severe injuries at Wooster Community Hospital and that her three passengers sustained serious injury as well
Image from YouTube.
Researchers from Yale have found that, when compared to rear-end crashes, side-impact accident injuries were the next worst kind. They noted that when it came to spinal injuries, rear-end collisions did the most damage, but that side-impact crashes weren’t too far behind. The Injury Directory website had the following info:
“The estimated annual incidence of automotive side impacts is 3.18 million in the United States. Between 10% and 18% of occupants involved in side impacts sustain soft-tissue neck injury.” (Injury Directory, July 2014)
Another medical expert on T-bone accident injuries, Dr. Cheryl Hart of RES Physical Medicine & Rehab, explains her description of these types of crashes in one of her online videos. “The type of injuries we see with a T-bone collision really quite dependent on whether you’re the driver, whether you get hit on your side or the other side,” she says. “But, generally what happens is you get slammed against the door of the car, and that usually entails some type of head trauma also, in addition to your neck and your lower back.”
Sideswipe accidents are another often occurring event, especially on roads with multiple lanes. They often occur when someone is trying to avoid rear-ending another vehicle, spontaneously changing lanes instinctively, and are not able to ascertain the location of other vehicles around them on such short notice.
Sideswipe accidents often occur when a car is in the middle lane and the driver accidentally merges to the right or the left, sideswiping the vehicles in those lanes. Car Accident Lawyers help clients prove they were not at fault in these types of accidents. Drivers are not always fatigued behind the wheel in these kinds of crashes, and many times they are simply trying to switch lanes not realizing that the cars they’re trying to merge in front of are going faster than they think. Instead of looking over their shoulder before changing lanes, they depend on their car’s side mirrors, where sometimes objects (in this case other cars) are closer than they appear!
It’s always a grim scene when you’re driving past a recent rollover accident on the highway. Sometimes you’ll automatically think that someone died just because of how damaged the car looks after it has flipped multiple times. Rollover accidents don’t always happen because of other cars with irresponsible drivers. There are sometimes environmental factors that have a big impact on the accident, such as if it is very rainy and the road is slippery. Personal Injury Lawyers see many of these of cases every year.
Cars and light trucks are not the only vehicles with the potential to overturn. Semi-trucks, whether loaded or empty, can lose control or be pushed by heavy winds and overturn. WKBN News 27 reported on one such accident on July 27th, 2017. It happened in Ohio’s Jackson Township, at about 4:30 in the morning. The police had to close down a ramp for several hours after a double tractor-trailer flipped on its side. The accident involved two tractor-trailers (one flipped, one didn’t), and no one was seriously hurt, but accidents like that demonstrate the potential for any type and size of the vehicle to overturn.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) says that about 40% of rollover accidents that result in death involve speeding. Their data also indicates that 75% of the time these accidents happen in areas where the speed limit is higher than 55 and that 50% of the time a person will flip their car because they’re under the influence of alcohol. In addition to alcohol, many over the counter and prescription medications can cause impairments that make it dangerous to operate a motor vehicle.
NHTSA also says that rollover crashes often happen in the same kinds of locations, specifically backcountry roads where there are no barriers between cars. Rollovers happen in these locations about 75% of the time when the driver was doing routine things such as taking on a curve. People have a tendency to speed more on rural roads, leading to errors in judging and maneuvering the terrain, or miscalculating curves, leading to accidental rollovers. It’s calculated that about 85% of the time rollovers are single-car accidents.
Orthopedic Proceedings conducted a study on common injuries that occurred as a result of rollover crashes. The study included 155 people who were involved in 88 accidents of this kind. The people who were in the accidents were from the ages of 7 months to 84 years old, and drivers ranged from 15 to 84 years of age.
Head and neck injuries were at the top of the list with 60%, with 37 people (24%)sustaining thorax injuries. Just over 15% of those people had injuries to the abdomen. When it came to extremity injuries, 47% of them had injuries to their arms while 34% had leg injuries. An experienced Car Accident Attorney can help injured parties receive fair compensation for this wide range of injuries.
Head-on collisions are considered rare by many experts, but they can occur any time a car drifts into a lane of oncoming traffic. The results are usually catastrophic due to the high speed on impact drunk driving is a major cause of head-on collisions. However, head-on collisions can also occur when there are problems with the vehicle, such as brake failure Your Auto Accident Lawyer can help you prove if mechanical failure or improper repair lead to your accident. Experts advise that, if you ever see a car coming straight at you in your lane, you should do everything in your power to avoid it, even if that means driving off the road.
Your Car Accident Lawyer has to show negligence on the part of the other driver in a head-on collision. For example, the driver may have breached the duty of care that is required of all drivers if they, say, knowingly got behind the wheel when they were physically fatigued. Even though forensic engineers will do things such as examine the tire marks on the road to see who was at fault, there are still those instances where both or multiple drivers will sue each other.
Image from Clarksville Online.
Head-on collisions account for only 2% of the motor vehicle accidents in the United States but still account for approximately 10% of all auto accident deaths nationwide. With the help of an experienced Personal Injury Lawyer, you’ll recover an array of damages, such as out-of-pocket and funeral expenses, and loss of consortium (a cause of action that is available to family members of a person injured or killed by the wrongful acts of another).
Where can I find Slater & Zurz LLP?
Slater & Zurz LLP has conveniently-located offices in Akron, Columbus, Cleveland, Canton, Cincinnati, Ohio. Arrangements can be made to meet with a Slater & Zurz personal injury attorney in other locations throughout Ohio if that is more accommodating.
You can set up a meeting with an attorney by calling the law firm at 1-888-534-4850, or you can go to their website at slaterzurz.com and “chat” with a legal representative. You can also contact the firm by filling out a short form on the website that you can electronically send to the law firm. Slater & Zurz offers a 24/7/365 response to your contact.