Motor vehicle accidents remain the single greatest cause of death for Americans between the ages of 1 and 54, according to 2015 figures by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). With the exception of city-dwellers who may rely entirely on public transportation, the majority of Americans must take to the highways every day. While driving is risky, there are definitely things we can all do to lessen our risk factors. One of the simplest things is creating a routine of always using a seat belt.
Interestingly, the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) recently determined that most crash-related fatalities are actually passengers, not drivers. Although NHTSA reports that passenger seat belt use has increased significantly over the past 10 years, studies still show that only approximately 88% of passengers are using their seat belts regularly. In 2015 alone, “seat belts saved an estimated 13,941 lives among passenger vehicle occupants age 5 and older,” as explained by NHTSA.
The law says that the person responsible for a collision is required to compensate all of the other people he or she injures. Of course, the sad truth is that millions of drivers do not have adequate financial means to pay for the injuries they cause. Likewise, research seems tends to suggest that about one in eight drivers nationwide go without any auto insurance at all. This figure is much higher in some places. Therefore, many injured motorists and passengers find themselves using their own uninsured motorist coverage to pay for their injuries.
Plenty of injured people have found themselves catastrophically injured without any way to recover for those injuries. Therefore, it is always best to take every precaution possible to avoid injuries in the first place.
The latest research from the CDC shows that a total of 22,441 people died in motor vehicle collisions in 2015 alone, and as much as 59% of those aged 13 to 44 who died in crashes were not using a seat belt.
Even if a person uses a seat belt and takes all the necessary precautions, it is impossible to prevent all collisions and resulting injuries. Distracted and intoxicated drivers are out there on the road every day, putting the public at risk. If you or someone you love are injured in an auto accident, do not speak to the insurance company or make any statements that could be construed as admissions of liability. Remember that the insurance companies do not make money by paying claims. Insurance companies make money by collecting premiums and avoiding liability whenever possible. You should always speak to an attorney before discussing the details of your crash with anyone, especially an insurance adjuster.
Once you have ensured the safety of yourself and others, contact the police, and get the medical treatment you need. You or someone you trust should contact an experienced Long Island auto accident attorney as soon as possible. The Law Office of Cohen & Jaffe, LLP represents injured people throughout Long Island and surrounding areas. Call(866) 895-0420 to speak to schedule your free consultation today.