How common are motor vehicle accidents in California?
There are over five million car accidents per year that result in two million injury victims and 30,000 fatalities in the U.S. Motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death for both children and teenagers. Car accidents are so prevalent that an average of 500 kids under the age of 14 is injured daily while four kids per day are tragically killed. California has the highest number of car accident related fatalities in the U.S.
What types of conduct most typically play a role in traffic collisions?
While there are many factors that cause auto accidents in California, the most common causes include drunken driving, distracted driving and speeding. Although the number for drunken driving fatalities has improved in recent years, alcohol related collisions still account for 32 percent of fatal traffic accidents. Speeding plays a factor in almost as many fatal California auto collisions, amounting to 31 percent of all traffic related fatalities. With the growing popularity of portable electronic devices, distracted driving is rapidly becoming an even more serious cause of car accidents than DUI/DWI. Some government entities have called texting and driving the new DUI because of its growing role in causing car accidents and the degree to which it interferes with driving ability.
What damages are available if I am injured in a California car accident?
If someone is injured in a car crash in California they may recover both pecuniary and non-pecuniary damages. Pecuniary damages are basically economic losses, such as hospitalization and medical expenses, lost income and property damage. A California accident victim is also entitled to recover non-pecuniary loss, which includes things like pain and suffering, loss of consortium, diminished quality of life and other non-economic losses. In cases of extremely outrageous conduct, the court may also award punitive damages that are intended to punish a wrongdoer and discourage particularly unacceptable conduct.
Should I summon the police to my car accident?
California law requires you to notify the police if you are involved in a car accident that involves at least $500 in property damage or injury to anyone involved in the collision. As a practical matter, many people dismiss minor symptoms like headaches, soreness, bruises and other injuries that look superficial. This may turn out to be a costly mistake. Many very serious injuries suffered in California motor vehicle accidents do not manifest obvious symptoms for days or even weeks. If you suffer even minor symptoms, you should alert the police of your collision.
What information should I obtain if I am involved in a car crash in California?
At the very minimum, you should exchange insurance, contact and driver’s license information. It is also a good idea to get the plate number and a description of the other vehicle. If there are passengers in the other vehicle, you should also get their names and contact information. If there are other witnesses, you should also obtain their names and contact information. If you have a camera on your phone, it is also a good idea to take pictures of any injuries, any vehicle damage, the relative position of the vehicles and the immediate vicinity of the car accident.
Does the fact that I was issued a traffic citation at the California car accident scene mean that I cannot recover compensation for my injuries?
The fact that your received a traffic ticket does not necessarily mean that you cannot recover for your injuries. Even if you were cited for something that contributed to your auto collision, this does not necessarily mean that there were no other responsible parties that may share liability for your injuries. Under California’s pure comparative negligence system, you may recover for your injuries suffered in a car accident as long as you are not 100 percent responsible for your own injuries. However, any recovery will be reduced based on the percentage of fault that is assigned to you.
What kinds of serious injuries are suffered in California car collisions?
While there are many types of injuries that may be suffered in a California car accident, some of the most common serious injuries include the following:
- Head injuries including permanent damage to the brain
- Damage to the spinal cord, which can impair movement and sensation
- Severe broken bones and compound fractures
- Life-threatening damage to internal organs
- Severe burns that may require skin grafts
- Amputation of limbs
- Dislocations, torn ligaments and tendons
- Injury to the neck or shoulder
- Whiplash injuries
What types of California motor vehicle accidents do you handle?
Our California motor vehicle accident attorneys have extensive experience handling all types of vehicle accidents including:
- Passenger car collisions
- Pickup trucks accidents
- 15 passenger van rollovers
- SUV rollover accidents
- Motorcycle crashes
- Bicycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Rental car crashes
- Bus accidents
- Commercial trucking collisions
- ATV rollovers
- Public transit accidents
- Delivery truck crashes
- Multi-car accidents
- Run off the road crashes
- Crashes involving intoxicated drivers
- Distracted driving crashes
- Accidents involving speeding drivers
- Aggressive driving accidents (e.g. tailgating drivers)
- Collisions from failing to obey traffic safety laws
These are answers to some of the questions that we hear most frequently from auto accident victims in California. If you need more information or do not see your question posted here, we invite you to call us so that we can provide answers to your questions about car crash liability in California. Our dedicated and experienced team of attorneys are committed to providing persuasive litigation and compelling advocacy on behalf of our clients. Our law firm understands the hardship that a serious car accident can inflict on you and your family. We do not treat our clients like a “case file” or “personal injury case” because we know that our clients our beloved family member, respected neighbors and valuable members of our Southern California community. If you or someone you love has been injured in a California motor vehicle collision, our experienced team of attorneys is ready to answer your questions and seek the justice and fair compensation that you deserve.
Our experienced California car accident lawyers zealously fight for car wreck victims throughout Southern California. We have successfully represented thousands of California car accident victims in obtaining the compensation and justice they deserve. We believe that those whose careless or inattentive behavior injures others must be held accountable and that victims must be compensated. Our experienced California car accident lawyers provide thorough investigation of the facts, expert knowledge of the law, innovative litigation strategies, effective negotiation and persuasive advocacy. We are committed to helping victims recover the compensation they need to move past their car accident so call us today to see how we can help.