If you have ever been involved in a motor vehicle accident, you know how scary they can be. Even a minor accident may result in emotional trauma, damage to your vehicle and various physical injuries. The good news is that you may be entitled to compensation from any party that may have been negligent in allowing the wreck to happen. Let’s take a look at the various types of car accidents that might occur as well as why you should call a Los Angeles, California personal injury attorney if you’re the victim of another party’s negligent behavior.
As the name suggests, this type of collision occurs when the front end of one vehicle makes contact with the front end of another vehicle. Depending on the speed at which such a wreck occurs, it could result in the complete destruction of both vehicles as well as serious bodily injury or death to those inside either of the cars or trucks involved.
A head-on collision may occur if a car or truck is traveling the wrong direction on a road or highway and makes contact with a car or truck going in the correct direction. It’s also possible for two vehicles to face each other while sitting in a driveway or parking lot. If both are being operated at the same time, they could inadvertently collide if they are each in drive instead of reverse.
Fortunately the results of such a collision would likely be minimal as it’s unlikely that either vehicle would be traveling at a high rate of speed. Of course, if your car is damaged or you are hurt in a wreck, you may still be entitled to file a personal injury claim. If the other driver is deemed to be at fault, he or she might be liable for medical bills or other financial losses incurred.
A rear collision occurs when the front of one car or truck makes contact with the back of another car or truck. As a general rule, the driver of the vehicle that causes the collision is deemed to be at fault. However, determining liability in such a case may depend on a number of factors such as whether the car that was hit from behind was moving backwards when the accident happened.
These types of crashes may happen for multiple reasons. For example, a driver may back their car too far out of their parking space and make contact with your vehicle. The same may happen in a driveway, on the side of a street or in other tight spaces.
A rear crash may occur when a distracted driver fails to notice that traffic has come to a stop. Traffic may have come to a stop while approaching a road or highway construction project or because a traffic light has turned red. It’s also possible that a driver will fail to slow down when approaching a car or truck that is making a turn.
This may be because the operator of the turning vehicle failed to use a turn signal. In such a scenario, liability for the crash may be allocated between the drivers of both vehicles.
Although any type of accident can be fatal, the biggest risk from a rear collision may be back or neck injuries. This is because the force of the impact may cause these parts of your body to move in an unnatural manner.
A broadside collision occurs when the front of one vehicle collides with the side of another car or truck. This type of crash is often referred to as a T-bone collision as the two cars look like a T when they are fused together.
Such an accident typically occurs when a vehicle traveling north or south goes through an intersection and is struck by another car or truck that is traveling east or west. In some cases, the collision occurs because one car ran a red light or failed to obey another traffic control signal.
This type of collision may also occur when a vehicle making a left turn makes contact with a car that is traveling straight ahead. Typically, cars or trucks that are making a turn are supposed to wait until other traffic has cleared before doing so. Otherwise, they may be held liable in a personal injury case. One exception might be in the event that the car or truck making a turn had an arrow or otherwise had permission to do so.
These types of collisions tend to be among the most dangerous because most cars typically focus on protecting the front and the back of the car. Although newer cars do have side air bags and other side safety equipment, this may not help if you drive a car that is more than a decade old.
A sideswipe collision tends to be among the least likely to cause serious bodily injury or death. However, it can still cause significant damage to your car. This type of accident often occurs when another vehicle doesn’t leave enough room to make a safe lane change. In such a scenario, that vehicle will make contact with one of your car’s side panels as it makes its way to a highway exit or pulls in front of you.
It’s not unheard of for a single car accident to cause a chain of events that leads to a larger pileup. For example, a car that is hit from behind by a larger truck or SUV might be pushed into an intersection at the same moment another vehicle is trying to cross it from another direction. That can result in a broadside or head-on collision depending on where the vehicles are located.
In an accident involving multiple vehicles, it may be difficult to determine who is liable for damages if you choose to pursue a personal injury case. While you might not be liable for the actions of a driver that pushed a car into an intersection, you may be partially responsible if you failed to take reasonable actions to avoid a secondary collision. This may be especially true if you were distracted or driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
A Los Angeles, California personal injury attorney may be able to review your case and determine if you may be entitled to reimbursement for medical bills, lost wages or other damages. An attorney may also be able to talk more about the statute of limitations that might apply in your case.
In California, you have two years from the date of a wreck to file a lawsuit. The clock may toll if you were a minor when the accident occurred or if you were mentally or physically incapacitated for any period of time after the wreck happened. You may also have more time to file a lawsuit if you were incarcerated or could not immediately tie your injuries to the defendant’s actions.
It’s also worth noting that you have as much time as you need to actually take a personal injury claim to court. For instance, if you file a lawsuit a day after the wreck happens, you could try to negotiate a settlement for three years before actually going before a judge. Your attorney will likely file the suit on your behalf the day he or she is hired simply to preserve your rights and to provide leverage during settlement talks.
Finally, your attorney may be able to help gather evidence that can be used to bolster your chance of obtaining a favorable result in your case. Evidence may include witness statements, photos from the crash site or video footage that might help prove that you were the victim of someone else’s negligence.
If you are involved in any type of accident, you may experience a variety of injuries such as a concussion, broken bones or internal bleeding. In some cases, symptoms of these injuries may take days or weeks to present themselves. Therefore, it’s critical to seek medical attention as soon as possible after a crash occurs. After seeking treatment, your next move should be to contact a personal injury attorney who may help you obtain the compensation that you may be entitled to by law.