Multi-vehicle accidents can be devastating. They often result in scores of injuries and multiple fatalities. If you’re injured in a multi-vehicle accident in Baltimore, the District of Columbia, or northern Virginia, contact a Baltimore car crash attorney immediately.
How do multi-vehicle accidents happen? How is liability determined for these accidents? What are your legal rights if you sustain injuries in a multi-vehicle accident? Will you be able to recover compensation? What legal steps should you take?
If you continue reading this short introduction to multi-vehicle accidents and your rights, these questions are going to be answered, and you will also learn what a Baltimore car crash lawyer will do on your behalf if you’re the injured victim of a multi-vehicle accident.
When facing multiple car crashes at once, the at fault party can vary. For example, if there was an accident with 3 cars, the back driver could be at fault if they crash into the the middle car which in turn leads to the middle car hitting the front driver. However, in the case where there are many cars piling up, generally, the at fault party could be the driver who caused the pile up and crashed into someone else. It’s vital to talk to an attorney because in these scenarios, you never know who could actually be at fault. Moreover, it’s a scary and fast situation that unfortunately happens quite often.
Any accident that involves more than two vehicles is a multi-vehicle accident. Of about six million traffic accidents annually in the United States, nearly a third are multi-vehicle accidents.
When multiple vehicles are involved in the same accident, it’s inevitable that there will be more damages, more injuries, and more fatalities. Here are some examples:
In 2008, four people were killed and thirty-eight were reportedly injured in a pile-up that involved seventy vehicles on Interstate 4 north of Tampa.
In 2012, two people were killed and one hundred were reportedly injured in a 150-vehicle pile-up on Interstate 10 in Texas.
In 2021, six people died and more than sixty-five injury victims were reportedly hospitalized after a 133-vehicle pile-up on Interstate 35W outside of Fort Worth.
Multi-vehicle accident cases can be exceedingly complicated, especially when determining which party or parties are at-fault, which party or parties have liability, and which party or parties are entitled by law to recover monetary compensation.
In Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia, the injured victim of another party’s negligence is entitled to recover compensation for current and projected future medical costs, lost wages and projected future lost wages, pain, suffering, and related damages and losses.
Pile-ups usually happen on highways and usually begin when two vehicles moving at highway speeds have a collision. Nearby vehicles are unable to stop in time to avoid creating a multi-vehicle crash. When traffic is heavy, scores of vehicles may be involved.
The first vehicle occupants involved in a multi-vehicle crash are at risk for the most severe injuries. Those occupants – who may already be injured and unable to move – endure multiple impacts, and after the first impact, they have no additional airbag or seat belt protection.
The emotional and physical damage that results from a swift succession of multiple impacts can have a devastating effect on the mental and physical health and the quality of life of multi-vehicle accident victims.
Multi-vehicle accidents may result in catastrophic injuries that include but are not limited to burns, blindness, amputations, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord damage, nerve damage, and fractures.
If you require long-term treatment – or lifelong medical care – after a multi-vehicle collision, you will need to acquire the maximum amount of compensation that’s available, and you will need an attorney’s help.
The root causes of multi-vehicle accidents are the same causes of all traffic accidents: distracted, negligent, or aggressive driving; speeding; intoxicated or fatigued driving; foul weather; poor road conditions; and vehicle malfunctions or defects.
Multi-vehicle accidents pose genuine challenges to crash investigators who must determine the cause of an accident and identify the party or parties who may have been at fault. Assigning liability requires a careful examination of the chain of events that led to the crash. Before injury victims may seek compensation, fault must be assigned and liable parties must be identified.
Was more than one driver at fault for the accident? Did weather or mechanical factors play a role in causing the accident? If commercial vehicles were involved in the accident, can any liability be assigned to the companies that own those vehicles?
Law enforcement, the insurance companies, and your own Baltimore car crash attorney will all conduct investigations to determine the answers to these questions. When those answers are determined, the injured victims may bring injury claims against the party or parties with liability.
Your Baltimore car crash lawyer will investigate the collision, compile the evidence that supports your personal injury claim, and negotiate with the liable parties (or with their attorneys and insurance companies) for a fair, just, and reasonable settlement of your claim.
Most personal injury claims are resolved out-of-court. However, if your claim is disputed or rejected and no reasonable settlement offer is forthcoming, your attorney will take your case to trial, tell the jury what happened, and ask the jurors to order the payment of your compensation.
If you are involved in a multi-vehicle accident, you must obtain a medical exam – within 24 hours if possible – even if you don’t “feel” injured. Without a prompt medical examination, a latent or difficult-to-detect injury could quickly turn into a serious medical condition.
After you have been treated and released, contact a Baltimore car crash injury attorney as quickly as possible. The deadline for filing a personal injury claim arising from a multi-vehicle accident is three years from the date of the injury in Maryland. In Virginia, the deadline is two years.
But do not wait two or three years to speak with a personal injury attorney. Your attorney should be able to examine the evidence before it deteriorates (or disappears) and should be able to question any witnesses before their memories of the accident begin to fade.
If you were injured in a multi-vehicle accident, your first consultation with a Baltimore multiple car crash injury attorney is provided with no cost or obligation. You will learn how the law applies to your own case, and you will learn more about your rights and legal options.
If you and your attorney agree to move forward with legal action, you will pay no attorney’s fee until and unless your attorney recovers the compensation that you are entitled to by law.
You can learn more or start the legal process right away. If you have been injured in a multi-vehicle accident, after you have been examined by a health care professional, make the call immediately to a Virginia or Maryland car crash injury attorney.