A chain reaction car accident is all too common here in North Texas. Late last night in Plano, an intoxicated driver of a Mustang crashed into a BMW which hit two other vehicles, causing four drivers to be rushed to hospitals. Last week in Dallas, Central Expressway was shut down all night after a four vehicle pile-up which took the life of a young man and injured three other drivers. And several weeks ago, Interstate 20 in Arlington was the site of interconnected accidents that claimed the life of a man and hurt others. This post explains what you should do if you are unfortunately injured in a multiple vehicle collision here.
Questions you will have after being in a multiple vehicle collision
These are some of the questions we hear our new clients asking us after they have been injured in a chain reaction:
- Which driver, or drivers, are at fault?
- How is my car or truck going to get repaired/totaled and how can I get a rental car or truck in the meantime?
- Who is going to pay for my hospital and doctor bills, medicine, and physical therapy?
- What about payment of my lost wages, sick leave, and vacation pay?
These crashes are more complicated than most car accident cases, have a lot of moving parts, and often have to go to court.
For example, what if you are unfortunately a passenger in the first vehicle and are injured. Depending on the facts that you and your personal injury lawyer discover, you may have a case against one, two, or perhaps all three of the drivers. For example, if the facts show that your driver stopped too suddenly or was otherwise negligent, and that the driver behind him of was distracted by reading text messages on his cell phone, and that the driver of of the third vehicle was speeding, you might have a claim against each of them.
To get the results you want, you should meet with a board certified personal injury attorney — preferably one who only handles car and truck crashes and has a lot of good reviews online.
One of the most challenging aspects of taking action after a chain reaction car or truck wreck is determining which driver is liable.
In a typical pile-up, that answer is much harder than the usual two vehicle collision. Several drivers may be slamming on their brakes at the same time, often at a high rate of speed and without much room between vehicles.
This can be a recipe for disaster. Most people drive too fast for the traffic conditions when they are perfect and think nothing of exceeding the speed limit, often by 10 or 20 mph. Try driving 65 on Interstate 30 and see what happens.
But the reaction time and stopping time for a standard vehicle at 75 mph is about 400 feet with average brakes and tires. A football field, by comparison, is 300 feet.
A driver who is traveling too fast — and who may also be distracted by his cell phone — won’t realize the vehicles in front have slowed or come to a stop until it is too late.
Negligent acts that a personal injury lawyer is looking for include speeding, failing to use turn signals, failing to timely brake or brake at all, tailgating, using a cell phone or being distracted, changing lanes improperly, and failing to obey traffic lights and signs.
Examples of different kinds of chain reactions
- Domino effect (the most typical): D (the last car) strikes C which ricochets into B and then A
- Delayed chain reaction: B slams on his brakes and doesn’t hit A, C hits B, and/or D hits C and pushes him into B
- Two crashes: C crashes into B at the same time D hits C
- Intersection crash from one angle causes vehicles coming from a different angle or direction to get t-boned or collided into head-on: A runs light and hits C who hits D who hits B
These cases are complicated and a good Fort Worth car accident lawyer can provide you with invaluable help. The sooner you call or meet him, the better, since critical evidence can disappear.
Your injury attorney will help you obtain the information you need to get a clearer picture of exactly what happened in the crash. This include the police accident report and notes, traffic citations and court proceedings, background checks, criminal histories (e.g. prior DWIs), statements from independent eyewitnesses, and an inspection of the vehicles and scene.
If you are injured in a multiple vehicle collision, it is critical that you know all possible parties who are liable since the other insurance adjusters and attorneys are certain to be pointing the finger at others. If a lawsuit and trial become necessary, all responsible parties must be before the court. If they are not present, the injured person will receive full compensation from all at-fault parties.
Berenson Injury Law is here to give you the answers and the representation you need. We have been helping injured drivers and passengers for nearly 40 years and know how to help get our clients the compensation they deserve.
For your free case review, contact us today at 1-888-801-8585 or email us online.
Related blog posts:
How can you get a good injury settlement? Fort Worth Injury Attorney Blog, Feb. 21, 2019
Car Crash Epidemic in DFW Has To Be Stopped – Fort Worth Injury Attorney Blog Feb. 5, 2019