A multi-vehicle or “chain reaction” car accident takes place in a matter of seconds when no less than three vehicles are involved in a progressive series of rear end collisions. As a result of the first collision, one car is subsequently pushed into another causing multiple collisions from the impact from the first crash and leading to pileups on the road until either the force of the last collision can’t propel the struck vehicle into another or there is no lead vehicle to strike. These collisions may cause many different, potentially severe injuries or even death – the occupants of any vehicles struck weren’t expecting and couldn’t prepare for several impending impacts. Unfortunately, most of these traumatic accidents were avoidable and caused by negligence, so if you were hurt in this type of crash speak to a Perris Chain Reaction and Multi-Vehicle Accident Attorney to see if you may be entitled to compensation.
Risk Factors for Chain Reactions in Perris Chain reaction collisions in metro areas like Perris can be fatal or produce catastrophic consequences –61 percent of all crash-related fatalities in 2018 take place in metro areas and involve multiple vehicles. 340 victims were injured or killed in Perris traffic accidents in 2017 alone. It’s no surprise that chain reaction collisions occur frequently – nearly 80 percent of motorists admit to at least occasionally engaging in distracted driving behaviors like texting and driving or speeding, and there’s heavy traffic in and around Perris thanks to the 215 freeway and a heavy commuting population. Even a split second of negligence can result in a multi-vehicle accident that alters the lives of victims permanently.
How Do Chain Reactions and Multi-Vehicle Accidents Happen? Once you know the basics of chain reaction accidents, it’s helpful to know how they can occur to help prevent them and understand what went wrong when accidents to occur. Though any number of situations can cause an accident, some scenarios are very common in and around Perris.
- The initial driver rear ends the vehicle in from of them, causing that vehicle to rear end the one in front of them in a chain reaction of collisions until there are no cars left to strike or the force of impact isn’t sufficient to cause another collision. The driver responsible for the initial rear end collision is generally at fault.
- The front vehicle suddenly enters a lane and brakes, leaving the vehicle following them no time to properly brake. This can leave the vehicle who rear ended the lane changing vehicle vulnerable to being rear ended themselves, causing a multi-vehicle accident. In these situations, the front vehicle is usually at fault.
- A middle car in a chain reaction claims another car hit them and propelled them forward into the vehicle they hit. This is a difficult situation because it becomes one driver’s story over another’s, but eyewitness testimony can be helpful to determine the truth.
- In a phantom vehicle chain reaction, the furthermost vehicle claims they themselves were struck first and pushed into the vehicle in front of them, then the culprit drove off in a hit and run. Checking the vehicle claiming the hit and run occurred for fresh damage and getting eyewitness statements can often resolve the dispute.
Can I Win My Case? Victims usually seek compensation for their injuries by filing suit in civil court alleging negligence caused their harm. Part of establishing negligent behavior also involves establishing who was at fault for the injury-causing accident. To establish negligence, you must demonstrate the defendant:
- Had a legal duty of care to you,
- Breached their duty to you through either an act or omission; and
- Caused your injury through their breach of duty.
Sometimes it can be difficult to establish who is at fault for an accident – eyewitness accounts, police reports, vehicle damage, traffic camera footage, or even on-scene evidence such as skid marks may provide guidance. If evidence appears to show that the wrongdoer violated a law or regulation – including traffic laws like speeding – you can establish the presumption hey acted improperly through negligence per se. Even if you were partly to blame for the accident, you still may be able to recover a portion of your damages based on the percentage of fault the court determines you had in the accident.
How Much is My Case Worth? If you were hurt by another’s negligence, you may be entitled to an award of damages by the court for your injuries. These accidents often require expensive medical treatment and long-term care; victims may also be out of work for the short or long-term and may need extensive rehabilitative care. Compensatory damages are meant to make victims whole for financial, physical, emotional, and psychological injuries resulting from the accident. Among other things, victims may be able to recover for:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Property damage
- Funeral expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Permanent disfigurement or disability
- Loss of consortium.
Sometimes, victims may be given an additional damage award by the court to punish a defendant’s particularly egregious behavior and discourage repetition of the vile, reprehensible conduct. These punitive damage awards are often large but require satisfying a high threshold of proof before becoming eligible for the discretionary damages. Because these are tricky legal waters, punitive damages are best handled by a skilled Perris Chain Reaction and Multi-Vehicle Accident Attorney to avoid costly missteps.
Contact an Attorney It can be overwhelming after an accident to handle communication with other drivers and insurers, recovering from your injuries, and figuring out how to get your life back on track, but don’t delay – time isn’t on your side. Contact the skilled Perris Chain Reaction and Multi-Vehicle Accident Attorneys at Walton Law, APC today to protect your legal rights, give your recovery a leg up, and fight for the compensation you deserve. Our attorneys have spent years working tirelessly for victims and have recovered millions in damages for their injuries. Contact us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to schedule your no risk, no obligation initial case review today. Call today at (866)-338-7079 or use our online Contact Page to schedule your free consultation; you don’t pay until we win your case. Let our team of attorneys review the facts of your unique situation and use our knowledge and resources to help you get your life back on track.