Every day, there are more drivers on the road, and your risk of being involved in an auto accident increases.
There are 227.5 million registered drivers in the U.S. today. Historically low fuel costs in recent years and the expansion of suburban areas means traffic levels have reached record highs.
More vehicles on the road meant the country experienced 12 million auto vehicle accidents in 2018, which is a record high.
Your chances of survival depend largely on the type of vehicular accident you happen to be involved in. Whether you are driving a car, riding a bus, or walking along the street, you need to know what to do if you're the victim of an accident.
Learn more about the different auto accidents and what you should do if you ever find yourself involved in one.
18 Wheeler Accidents
18 wheeler auto accidents in Louisiana accounted for just 2% of all motor vehicle fatalities in 2019. The truth is these statistics only take into account those who died in 18 wheelers. They don't include deaths that occurred because an 18 wheeler hit a car, a bus, or a pedestrian.
When you take the nationwide figure for fatal accidents, 11% of all road fatalities in the country involve an 18 wheeler.
If the figures are framed in this manner, it should come as no surprise that 18 wheeler fatalities are so low. They are the biggest vehicles on the road. Crashes involving these vehicles are less likely to kill the driver or passenger.
What Should I Do if I'm the Victim of an 18 Wheeler Accident?
Step One – Call 9-1-1 immediately. You must determine the extent of your injuries. Remember, the symptoms of a traumatic brain injury may take days or weeks to appear. Even if you feel fine, seek medical attention. The high impact nature of an 18 wheeler increases the risks of experiencing one of these injuries.
Step Two – Get the details of both the driver and his employer. Note down the driver's license, registration, and insurer. Make sure you get the name of the trucking company.
Step Three – If possible, gather as much evidence as possible. Photos, videos, and any witnesses' contact information are all essential aspects of building any legal case and getting the compensation you deserve.
Step Four – Call an attorney. Contact Schwartz Law Firm, and let's handle your case. Don't communicate with insurers or anyone else who calls you. Anything you say can and will be used against you. Let us handle it for you.
Bus accidents come with a high chance of serious injury. Passengers do not wear seatbelts and may even be on their feet at the moment of impact.
Statistically, you're unlikely to be involved in a bus crash. You have just a 1 in 6,800 chance of being the victim of a car, truck, or bus-related accident.
There are still 29,000 public buses in the State of Louisiana, so it could happen. If you are involved in a bus accident, you must act quickly.
What Should I Do if Involved in a Bus Accident?
Step One – Coordinate with your fellow passengers. Figure out who needs medical attention. If anyone is a qualified first-aider, let them take over while someone else calls 9-1-1.
Step Two – Ensure everybody gets off the bus. Fires and multi-vehicle pileups are still possible even after the vehicle comes to a halt. Your priority is to get out of the danger zone.
Step Three – Once you've called the emergency services, take pictures and videos of the scene. This could be vital evidence that enables all passengers to get the justice they deserve.
Step Four – Take down the bus driver's details and any other drivers involved in the accident. You should do the same with your fellow passengers as they're all witnesses.
Step Five – The final step is to call an experienced bus injury attorney. Allow Schwartz Law Firm to handle your case from here.
Car and Trucking Accidents
Car and trucking accidents easily make up the majority of auto accidents in the U.S. Naturally; these are the vehicles the majority of people drive. It's crazy, but policy experts predict that trucking accidents alone will become the fifth leading cause of death in the country by 2030.
But why are you at risk of being involved in a car or truck accident? These are the leading causes of auto accidents today:
- Distracted driving. A few seconds of texting or applying makeup could be a mistake from which you never recover.
- Drunk driving.
- Breaking the speed limit.
- Reckless driving.
Poor driving in bad weather conditions.
The real kicker is that these leading causes of auto accidents are entirely avoidable. Education, responsibility, and courtesy could make most road traffic accidents a semi-rare occurrence tomorrow.
What Should I Do if Involved in a Car or Trucking Accident?
Automobile accidents must be handled with care. Failure to follow the right steps could lead to criminal charges, even if you were involved in an auto accident that wasn't your fault.
Follow these steps at the scene of the accident:
STOP! – It's an offense to drive away from auto accidents. Switch the car off and leave the vehicle if you're physically able.
Call 9-1-1 – You don't have to call an ambulance and the police separately. They'll communicate with each other. Even if you're fine, the medical and accident reports are vital for determining liability and compensation later on.
Record the Scene – Take out your phone, snap some photos, and shoot some video. Give your attorney a fresh look at the scene.
Exchange Information – Make sure you exchange details with the other driver(s). Get their license, registration, and insurance information.
Contact an Attorney – Contact Schwartz Law and let them get you the compensation you deserve.
Company Vehicle Accidents
Did you know that motor vehicle accidents are the leading or second leading cause of death in every industry? Approximately 24% of all workplace deaths arose from auto accidents in 2018.
Company vehicle accidents represent the biggest threat to your health at work.
Victims of auto accidents involving company vehicles are often confused about their rights and who has to cover their bills, however.
What You Need to Know About Company Vehicle Auto Accidents
Firstly, you are not responsible for your own medical bills in the majority of cases. When you are out on business in a company vehicle, your employer is responsible for your actions. This is known as vicarious liability.
Your employer's worker's compensation policy will cover two-thirds of lost wages, medical bills, and any out-of-pocket expenses. Your employer's liability insurance covers the same for the other driver(s).
If you're found to be at fault for the accident, your company may have to pay through their insurance policy. You're fully protected, however, so you'll never have to pay out any of these damages yourself.
That doesn't mean you don't have responsibilities. Follow the advice outlined above for what you should do if involved in an accident when driving a company car.
Did you know that you're 27 times more likely than a passenger car occupant to die if you ride a motorcycle?
Yet despite all this, just 18 states and the District of Colombia mandate helmet use by riders. It should be no surprise that severe injury and death are a genuine risk whenever a motorcycle is involved in a motor vehicle accident.
What Should I Do if Involved in a Motorcycle Accident?
Your responsibilities remain the same as any car driver. You must stop, exchange details, and call the authorities to write up a report.
If you can, take pictures of the scene. Don't be tempted to move your motorcycle from where it came to rest. Protect the scene as this could be vital for proving your side of the story.
Most experts recommend photographing your injuries. As gruesome as it might seem, images of torn leathers and dented helmets are things your attorney needs to fight your corner.
Pedestrians are the most vulnerable group in any accident. You have no protection, which is why 137,000 pedestrians were treated for non-fatal injuries resulting from auto accidents in 2017.
You have the same right to claim compensation as any other road user. If you're involved in an accident, call 9-1-1 and get the driver's details. The fact you're on foot changes nothing.
Payouts for your injuries could be substantial.
For example, in May 2020, a pedestrian injured by a driver received $675,000 when he sustained multiple fractures at a Jersey City, New Jersey crosswalk.
Hurt, and it wasn't Your Fault? We Can Help
Regardless of whether you were walking along the street, driving home from work, or riding the bus in Downtown New Orleans, if you were hurt in a vehicular accident that wasn't your fault, you're entitled to justice.
The chances are you're eligible for some compensation. Call an experienced auto accident attorney at the earliest possible opportunity.
Schwartz Law Firm has more than 20 years of experience helping the good people of Louisiana. Call Schwartz Law Firm now for a free case evaluation and consultation.
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