Indianapolis Auto Accident Law Firm
While it is important to always be alert and practice safe and defensive driving behaviors no matter what time of day or night you are driving, there have been multiple studies done that reveal certain patterns that indicate there are certain times where it can be more hazardous to be on the road. Before you head out on the road, always check for weather conditions or any traffic alerts that may impact your trip or commute. Use your best judgement to determine if it is safe to drive, and try your best to avoid driving if it’s not necessary during extreme conditions. The following information will help Indiana drivers understand when the risks of being involved in a crash may be higher. If you have been injured in a crash, an Indianapolis, IN auto accident attorney from the Ward & Ward Law Firm can explain what your legal options may be.
Common Factors in Crashes
In many studies, there are certain crash predictor factors that are consistent in researchers’ findings. The majority of these factors are classified as dangerous driving behaviors. While there are times that environmental factors are the cause of the crash and often out of the driver’s control, most of the time the crash occurred because of a negligent or reckless decision on the driver’s part. This is certainly the case in most of the car accident claims each Indianapolis, IN auto accident attorney from our firm handles.
Many people choose to engage in reckless, aggressive, or other dangerous driving behaviors for many reasons: convenience, road rage, or they believe they are always in full control of the vehicle. For example, someone might speed because they are late to work or an appointment. Running a red light, ignoring posted traffic signs, or not yielding to pedestrians are all dangerous actions that can lead to accidents that may result in a person becoming seriously injured. Those behaviors might seem minor in the moment, but it’s never worth the risk because they threaten your safety and the safety of others.
Certain factors not related to personal behavior can increase the risk of a crash occurring. Some of the more common factors that have been found to increase the risk of car accidents include:
Time of day: Many studies have shown that the frequency of dangerous driving behaviors actually increases at night. This is often due to decreased visibility and sleepiness that drivers experience at night. Drivers who don’t turn on their headlights at night put themselves and other drivers around them at risk. These hazardous behaviors include driving under the influence, speeding, driving without wearing seatbelts, and more. Alcohol is the most common factor, responsible for 54 percent of all accidents that take place at night, but it is also a high factor during the day, found to be the cause of about 20 percent of all daytime accidents.
Time of the week: The days of the week that have the lowest risks of car accidents are Tuesdays and Wednesdays, especially during the early morning hours of between 4 am and 5 am. This is due to lower peak patterns of traffic. Weekends are the most dangerous times to be on the road and have the highest number of accidents. Roads are more congested since there are more people going to different destinations during their free time.
Weather conditions: Weather can have a significant role in why an accident happens, especially during times of ice, snow, heavy rains, and fog. However, if a driver understands how these conditions affect the roads, this information can help minimize their risk of crashing. For example, an auto accident lawyer in Indianapolis, IN knows that the most dangerous time to drive when it is raining is within the first 10 minutes after the rain starts. This is because the oil from the road is mixing with the oils from vehicles, making the roads much slipperier as the raindrops hit the asphalt. It is best to know the proper defensive driving practices in case an emergency happens while you’re on the road. Make sure you know how to brake properly if you run into obstacles on the road. Know what to do if you experience weather hazards such as black ice, freezing rain, or dense fog. Always be prepared so you can minimize the severity of injuries in case you experience an accident. Practice common sense driving such as slowing down once you notice rain, snow, or other hazards.
Let Our Office Help You
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, you may be able to pursue damages, depending on the circumstances of the crash. Contact Ward & Ward Law Firm to schedule a free consultation with an auto accident lawyer Indianapolis, IN clients trust, and find out what your legal options may be.
Who Is Liable When a Car Crash Occurs?
One of the primary reasons why it’s important to connect with an Indianapolis, IN auto accident attorney in the wake of a crash (whether it be relatively minor, major, or catastrophic) is that everyone involved in auto collisions is affected by liability concerns. If you’re partially or totally at fault for an accident, you could be held liable for property damage and/or injuries suffered by others involved. Conversely, if you were harmed as a result of the crash, you may be able to hold others who were partially or totally responsible for the injuries you’ve suffered and the property damage that resulted from the accident.
Determining who was responsible for a crash is tricky business. Say, for example, a drunk driver hit you while you were texting behind the wheel. One or both of you may be held liable, depending on the ways in which the crash unfolded. Oftentimes, lawyers need to initiate an investigation to uncover all the facts related to a specific crash.
Speaking with the experienced Indiana legal team at Ward & Ward Law Firm will clarify your situation so that you can make an informed decision about your legal options. It isn’t always easy to know at first glance who can be held legally liable for a crash. As a result, it’s important not to admit fault before speaking with an attorney, even if you believe you’re partially liable. Things aren’t always as they seem… and admitting fault before the whole story is revealed could compromise your ability to collect compensation that is rightfully yours. In any case, you are not obligated to admit fault at the time of an accident. If you do, you can harm your case.
What if I Am Partially Liable?
It is possible that you’re partly liable for your auto accident. After all, collisions are complex affairs and more than one factor can influence why and how a crash occurs. However, simply because you may be partially liable for the collision doesn’t mean that you’re barred from collecting compensation from others who are partially liable as well.
Generally speaking, if you were less than 50 percent at-fault for the accident, you can hold others liable for the harm you suffered as a result of their contributions to the collision. Granted, no two accidents unfold in exactly the same way, so it’s important to connect with an experienced Indianapolis, IN auto accident attorney before making assumptions (for the better and for the worse) about your liability concerns. However, in most cases, if another was “more” at fault than you were, you can hold them partially responsible for the crash. You’ll simply be entitled to less compensation than you might have been, had you not also been partially liable.
Do not apologize to the other driver or admit fault regardless if you partially contributed to the accident. If anyone asks you if you were at fault, you do not have to answer that question. Allow your lawyer to handle any inquiries regarding your case
Legal Assistance Is Available
Car accidents are not easy ordeals to go through. However, you can decide to obtain helpful legal counsel if you are having difficulty dealing with the aftermath of a crash. You do not have to handle a complex car accident claim alone. If you’ve been involved in an accident and have suffered injury as a result, please connect with our Indianapolis, IN auto accident attorney team today. We’ll help you to clarify the details of your situation and advise you of your legal options accordingly. The aftermath of a crash can be stressful and disorienting, especially if you have never gone through a severe car accident. But please don’t wait too long to reach out. We recommend that you do not wait to take action, as there is limited time to gather information and build a strong case.The sooner we learn about your situation, the sooner we can begin preserving evidence and protecting your rights. We look forward to speaking with you.
Common Car Accident Injuries
When you get into a car accident, you can endure serious injuries that can affect you for months or even years. Even injuries labeled as minor can take weeks to fully recover from. Here are some of the most common car accident injuries an auto accident attorney Indianapolis, IN residents trust sees:
- Head Injuries: Head injuries, including contusions and traumatic brain injuries, are one of the most serious types of injuries that car accident victims can experience. While mild head injuries are possible to recover from, more severe head injuries can cause long-term problems with brain function, sleep problems and mood changes.
- Whiplash: Whiplash occurs when your head jerks back and forth suddenly during an accident. It can strain muscles and soft tissues in your neck, causing severe pain and stiffness. The symptoms of whiplash aren’t alway immediately apparent, so it’s critical to seek medical attention as soon as possible.
- Broken Bones: During a car accident, your body absorbs a large amount of impact, increasing your risk of broken bones. You can break bones in your arms, legs or even hips if you’re thrown out of the car, hit by objects or compressed during the collision. Broken bones are extremely painful and can take a while to recover from. If you break a bone in more than one place, you may need surgery. After initial treatment, your injuries may require further care from a physical or occupational therapist to improve your mobility.
- Scrapes and Cuts: You can suffer scrapes and cuts in a car accident if loose objects hit your body. While scrapes and cuts might not seem that big of a deal compared to other car accident injuries, they can be painful and result in an infection if not treated properly. Seve scrapes and cuts can also happen if you are thrown out of the vehicle after impact and slide across the pavement.
- Knee Injuries: If your knees hit the dashboard during a car accident, they can suffer severe trauma. Knees injuries are painful and can be quite complicated to treat. You may need braces, crutches and physical therapy to repair the damage. If the injury is very severe, knee replacement surgery may be necessary.
Psychological Injuries That Result from Car Accidents
When people think about car accidents, they may likely only imagine physical injuries. However, as an auto accident attorney in Indianapolis, IN can confirm, car accidents can also cause psychological injuries. For example, you may develop post-traumatic stress disorder, which can cause you to have flashbacks of the accident and make you very paranoid. You might avoid places and people that may remind you of the accident.
It’s also common for car accidents to experience anxiety for months after getting into an accident. You may feel too scared to get into a vehicle again or experience panic attacks triggered by sounds or sights that remind you of the collision.
Depression is another mental health condition some people can develop after a car accident. If you’re depressed, you may have feelings of guilt and worthlessness, lose interest in activities, have trouble sleeping and even have suicidal thoughts.