How is Fault Determined in a Multi-Vehicle Crash?
It is relatively easy to determine who is at fault in collisions which involve one or two vehicles. However, when three or more vehicles are involved, determining liability can be very difficult. The accident may be caused by one negligent driver whose actions produced a domino effect. Alternatively, it may be caused by the actions of more than one driver.
Whatever the situation, you need to be clear about who is at fault so you can get compensation. Multi-vehicle accidents tend to cause significant damage and serious injuries so you will want to recover all your losses. Having a Georgia auto accident lawyer on your side can make a big difference.
In order to recover damages following a Georgia car crash, you need to prove that another driver was at fault. Georgia adheres to the modified comparative fault system for determining liability in traffic collisions. You can only collect damages if you are less than 50 percent at fault for the accident. Your compensation will be reduced by the percentage of your liability. An experienced attorney will work to ensure that they didn’t blame you unfairly.
Causes of Multi-Vehicle Crashes as Seen by Any Georgia Auto Accident Lawyer
A number of factors can lead to multi-vehicle accidents. They include:
- Distracted driving. Motorists should keep their hands on the steering wheel and their eyes on the road but very often, they don’t. They fiddle with the radio, talk on the phone, text or even live stream. Drivers also eat and search for things in their vehicle. Distracted driving claimed 3, 166 lives in the country in 2017.
- Motorists who drive above the speed limit compromise their reaction times. In addition, the force of an impact is greater when a vehicle is going too fast. This means it becomes more difficult for drivers to avoid hazards. When they lose control of the vehicle, they can hit multiple vehicles.
- Adverse weather conditions. Wet or icy roads and poor visibility make accidents more likely. Very often, motorists don’t adjust their driving to suit the conditions. They don’t have enough time or room to respond to situations which arise on the road.
- Driver fatigue and drunk driving. Both of these can cause deadly accidents since drivers have delayed reaction times and poor judgment.
How Your Atlanta Automobile Accident Attorney Will Prove Liability
Your lawyer will have to work to prove who was responsible for your injury. The usual elements of negligence will apply the duty of care, breach of duty, and causation. If necessary, your lawyer will call on an accident reconstruction expert to determine the role each driver played. Each one will have to be assigned a fault percentage. Experts will draw on police reports, accident scene photos, witness testimonies, and the damage to each vehicle.
Multi-car accidents occur in a variety of ways. A common situation occurs when traffic isn’t moving and a speeding vehicle smashes into the last car in a line. If the impact is significant, it could send that car crashing into the vehicle in front of it. This can cause a chain of rear-end collisions. Several people could suffer injuries in this scenario but only one driver would be at fault.
Another situation which occurs frequently is where a car stops suddenly, and a multi-car pileup occurs. The driver who stopped for no apparent reason could be assigned some of the liability. Things get complex if tailgating contributes to the chain reaction. Each driver who is deemed to be following too closely could share liability. In stop and go traffic or cases where some cars are moving and others aren’t, there are even more complications.
Call The Bethune Law Firm for Assistance Today!
If you have been involved in an auto accident in which there could be multiple defendants, contact us. You will need Atlanta auto accident attorneys to help you deal with all the complexities. Keep in mind that the at-fault driver’s insurance company will only pay up to their liability limit. If there are multiple victims, there may not be enough coverage to fully compensate everyone. Furthermore, one of the drivers may claim you’re more at fault. This could preclude you from getting compensation.
When you contact the Bethune Law Firm, you will realize we are not intimidated by complex cases. We will work hard to identify the driver who was responsible for your injury. We will do everything we can to get to the compensation you deserve. All you have to do is call us today and schedule a free consultation.