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Multi-vehicle crashes are often referred to as pileups or chain reaction incidents because they often originate from a collision between two cars that sets off a successive series of impacts involving several vehicles. In fact, some of the more spectacular multi-vehicle accidents have involved dozens of vehicles. With so many individuals involved and the ensuing confusion, multi-vehicle accidents can become very complicated, very quickly. Along with all the damage and potential injuries to vehicle occupants, there are also a range of complex legal situations to resolve. These include identifying the actual at-fault parties and determining liability and the most possible sources of coverage. As someone injured in a multi-vehicle crash, it is imperative for you to have an experienced multi-vehicle accident attorney on your side to ensure you receive the attention and compensation you deserve.
At The Cagle Law Firm, we know how to handle the most complex multi-vehicle accident cases. Regardless of the nature of the injuries that you sustained, we will work aggressively to help you recover what you need. To arrange a free consultation with an experienced St. Louis car accident lawyer, call us today at (314) 276-1681 or fill out our contact form.
Where Multi-Car Crashes Occur
Multi-car collisions can happen anywhere, from large interstates to local city streets. An experienced multi-vehicle accident attorney can thoroughly investigate the cause of such crashes, but some of the most common locations and scenarios involve:
- Areas of high traffic.
- Winding roads in which a driver travels around a bend and suddenly encounters stopped traffic or an accident without enough time to avoid a collision. The State of Missouri reported that in 2011 there were 2,724 accidents resulting in injuries on curvy roads as well as 123 fatal crashes
- Fast traveling highways in which drivers follow too closely behind other vehicles, not allowing enough space to stop quickly in case of an emergency. On U.S. highways in Missouri in 2011, there were 802 car accidents causing injury and 25 car crashes resulting in a fatality. There were also 1,213 injuries and 25 fatalities on Missouri interstates in the same year.
- Low visibility conditions. These conditions can occur due to rain, snow, fog, dust, and smoke. When these conditions exist, drivers traveling at normal highway speeds can struggle to see the dangers ahead.
- Wet, snowy, or icy roads – these slick surfaces can sometimes make it impossible for vehicles to stop in time to prevent a collision.
Multi-vehicle crashes can occur in urban and rural areas. According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol Statistical Analysis Center, in 2011, 33.7 percent of all car crashes in the State occurred in rural areas with 66.3 percent occurring in urban areas. Regardless of the location, it takes a skilled multi-vehicle accident attorney to help an injury victim effectively deal with the situation and recover the compensation to which they are entitled.
Multi-vehicle collisions have a higher probability of happening in urban areas with dense traffic and on highways with drivers traveling at high speeds. In rural areas, multi-car crashes occur most often on roadways with narrow lanes or while traveling around tight curves and bends when visibility ahead is restricted.
Causes of Multi-Vehicle Accidents
Chain reaction crashes involving multiple vehicles start most of the time because of driver error. Common mistakes by drivers leading to multi-car crashes include:
Drivers who operate their vehicle and simultaneously texting while driving, talk on a cell phone, manipulate the vehicle console (such as the radio), or otherwise become distracted with passengers in the vehicle may have their attention shifted away from the road, leaving them vulnerable to a crash.
A car traveling at a high rate of speed takes considerable time and distance to stop. Drivers who speed have a greater risk of crashing into stopped or slowed traffic when distracted, even for a few seconds. A multi-vehicle accident attorney can implement investigative resources to determine what participant(s) in the crash may have been speeding, leading up to the accident.
Drivers who fail to give adequate space between the front of their vehicle and the rear of the vehicle ahead of them may have insufficient time to avoid a rear impact, subsequently causing a chain reaction crash.
Drivers may be distracted by observing another crash scene along the roadway without proper regard to the road ahead. Such distraction can result in a multi-vehicle pileup.
In multi-car crash situations, numerous parties may bear responsibility for the crash and the subsequent damages and injuries that occur. There may be one driver who initiated the accident through a poor driving decision that led to a subsequent chain reaction sequence of collisions. Other times, an intense and detailed investigation is required to determine the sequence of events in a multi-car pileup, who initiated the chain reaction, and what if any other drivers were at fault.
The police will typically begin the investigation to determine fault. However, the insurance company will also attempt to determine liability. It is vital to have an experienced multi-vehicle accident attorney on your side who can independently investigate the crash on your behalf to protect your rights and secure evidence that supports your claim.
State laws in Missouri, Illinois, and Kentucky require drivers found negligent, careless, or having violated traffic safety laws to compensate crash victims for their losses. The types of damages multi-vehicle crash victims may recover include medical expenses, lost wages and income, wrongful death damages, emotional distress, and pain and suffering.
When a multi-vehicle crash occurs, it is crucial to understand the circumstances leading up to the event. In some cases, multiple drivers may carry responsibility for the pileup due to negligence.
As a victim of such a crash, it is also important to obtain the services of an attorney who understands the complexities of chain reaction crash cases and knows how to advocate effectively for your portion of the damages owed.
Contact an Experienced Multi-Vehicle Accident Attorney
Our experienced St. Louis car crash lawyers understand the unique challenges involved in securing compensation in multi-vehicle crash cases. If you have suffered serious injury or losses in such an incident, allow our legal team at The Cagle Law Firm to advocate vigorously for the financial recovery you deserve.
To setup, a free, initial consultation about your case and how we can help, call us today at (314) 276-1681 or complete our contact form.