Secondary car accidents involve any crashes that occur as the result of another “primary” car crash. The Federal Highway Administration reports that one in every five car crashes is a secondary crash. Drivers should avoid the common mistake of thinking that “secondary” car accidents are any less destructive than primary accidents. Pile-ups are just one of the most common types of dangerous secondary accidents.
Following car accidents, victims often have countless bills to pay, which include costs associated with vehicle repair and medical expenses. If your vehicle accident was caused by another party’s negligence, you should not be left to pay for expenses out of pocket. Fortunately, an experienced car crash attorney can evaluate how your crash occurred and compile evidence to establish that you were not the party responsible for your accident and resulting damages.
Common Causes of Secondary Accidents
Secondary car accidents can occur in an instant and be caused by countless factors. The most common cause of secondary accidents happen is rear-end collisions. Other common causes of secondary accidents include:
- Drivers swerving to avoid obstacles in the road
- Stalled or disabled vehicles
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Where do Secondary Vehicle Accidents Commonly Occur?
Motorists should remember that secondary car accidents can occur anywhere primary vehicle accidents can. These crashes most commonly occur on four-lane highways or on city streets. Primary vehicle crashes can quickly result in secondary vehicle accidents if surrounding drivers do not have adequate time to respond to driving conditions.
Liability for Secondary Car Crashes
Given that most secondary accidents involve multiple vehicles, it is often difficult to assign liability after car crashes occur. If you are involved in a secondary car crash, one of the best things that you can do is to retain the assistance of an experienced personal injury attorney who can help to collect evidence showing how your crash occurred and create a strong argument that you should receive the compensation that you deserve.
What You Can Do to Avoid Accidents
There are some critical steps that drivers can take to remain on the road and stay prepared to react to any road obstacles that they might encounter. Some strategies that can be utilized to avoid secondary accidents include:
- Make sure to leave sufficient space between your vehicle and the one in front of you.
- Avoid excessive speeding because this can make it harder to respond when sudden emergencies occur.
- Drive in a manner that is appropriate for both the road and weather conditions.
- Make sure to always use your signal before changing lanes.
- Proceed cautiously when you notice the signs of an accident.
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Establishing Negligence After Car Crashes
Establishing negligence in a car crash is crucial to have a possibility of obtaining compensation for the damage that results from an accident. If you are the victim of a car accident, you should understand that you will be tasked with establishing the following elements:
- Duty of care. Motor vehicle drivers owe a duty of care to all other motorists on the road. This means that all vehicle drivers should take the necessary steps to avoid ending up in accidents with others on the road.
- A driver who causes an accident as a result of distracted driving or one of many other dangerous driving patterns likely breached this duty of care. The victims of car crashes must establish that a reasonable driver would have behaved differently. Some of the most common ways in which drivers breach their duty include driving aggressively, following too closely, operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and speeding.
- The accident was the result of the other party’s breach of duty. As an accident victim, to have the strongest claim for compensation possible, you should be able to establish that the other driver’s breach of duty and negligent act directly caused your accident, injuries, and property damage.
- The victim incurred injuries or losses. To receive compensation for any injuries as well as other costs associated with a car crash, victims should establish that they incurred damages in the accident. This might mean showing that medical costs, property damage costs, or pain and suffering resulted from a car crash. Remember, simply establishing that the other driver is responsible for your crash is not enough to win a personal injury case. Instead, you must present clear and compelling evidence that the other driver was negligent.
Deciding on Compensation After a Car Crash
If another person’s carelessness ends up causing your accidents or injuries, you can end up recovering various types of economic as well as non-economic damages. Even though the exact amount of compensation that you can expect to receive depends on both the severity and lasting nature of your injuries, following secondary car crashes it is possible to recover:
- Medical expenses. If another driver caused your accident, it is possible to receive compensation for your various medical expenses. Compensation can make up for things like hospitalizations, medical devices required after injuries, prescription costs, surgeries, and physical therapy.
- Loss of income. Accident victims who incur significant injuries are sometimes not able to return to how life was before an accident. Fortunately, compensation from personal injury lawsuits can compensate for things like lost wages as well as the loss of future income.
- Pain and suffering. Accident victims can end up facing substantial anguish as well as pain after serious accidents occur. Pain and suffering can include physical and emotional pain.
Contact an Experienced Car Crash Attorney
Following a car crash, victims are often left with serious complications including car repairs and medical bills. If your crash was caused by someone else’s negligence, you should not be left to pay these costs on your own. If you need the assistance of an experienced car crash attorney, do not hesitate to contact Cohen and Jaffe LLP today. During a free case evaluation, our attorneys can review your available options to pursue compensation.