Experienced Legal Representation For Car Accident Injuries
A car accident can happen to even the safest of drivers, and when it does, the damage can be severe. Even a minor crash or collision can leave you suffering serious and potentially life threatening injuries that impact your ability to work or even to engage in hobbies and activities you once enjoyed. At Groth & Associates, our skilled Toledo lawyers provide the professional legal representation you need when these types of accidents occur. We can advise you on how to hold responsible drivers accountable for the damage they have caused, so that you can get the compensation you deserve.
Common Car Accident Causes
According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than 32,000 people are killed each year in car accidents throughout the United States, while as many as two million others suffer serious injuries. While accidents can occur as the result of traffic, weather, and road conditions, reckless behavior on the part of other drivers is often to blame. Common causes of car accidents and injuries listed by the NHTSA include the following:
- Speeding: Driving in excess of posted speed limits and driving too fast for conditions are among the most common causes of driving fatalities on U.S. roads each year, responsible for roughly one third of all motor vehicle accidents that occur.
- Aggressive Driving: Aggressive driving behaviors such as tailgating, running red lights, and making improper turns are not only illegal under the Ohio Motor Vehicle Code, but they also put other drivers and their passengers at risk;
- Operating a Vehicle Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs (OVI): According to OVI statistics from the NHTSA, the use of alcohol or drugs plays a factor in as many as half of all traffic accidents that occur year, both in Ohio as well as throughout the country.
- Distracted Driving: The NHTSA website Distraction.gov states that, despite increased public awareness, distracted driving behaviors such as texting or using cellphones while behind the wheel continues to be responsible for over 400,000 car accidents and injuries each year.
- Drowsy Driving: The NHTSA reports that drowsy driving, which may consist of driving while excessively tired or actually falling asleep behind the wheel, has become an increasingly common factor in motor vehicle accidents. Factors that contribute to drowsy driving may include working swing shifts or double time and lack of sleep due to social activities or family responsibilities.
Types of Car Accidents
NHTSA statistics indicate that Ohio has one of the highest rates for car accidents and injuries in the country, compared to states of similar population and size. According to the Ohio Department of Public Safety (ODPS), more than 300,000 car accidents occurred within our state during 2015 alone, and roughly three people per day lose their lives as the result of these accidents, while close to 300 more suffer serious injuries. The ODPS reports the most common types of car accidents that occur in Ohio include the following:
- Rear end collisions, which can occur as the result of tailgating and distracted driving; these are the most common type of car accident, responsible for close to 90,000 accidents in Ohio in 2015.
- Side angle collisions, which can occur when driver disregard traffic signals at stop signs or red lights; these were the second most common type of accident, responsible for roughly 67,000 collisions each.
- Side swipe collisions in which one driver hits another while going the same direction. These often occur as the result of improper passing and speeding and result in roughly 30,000 accidents each year.
- Side swipe collisions in which the drivers are going in opposite directions. These can be the result of impaired, distracted, or drowsy driving, and are responsible for nearly 6,000 accidents each year.
- Head on collisions, which are among the most serious and potentially fatal type of driving accident. These can result from any number of factors, and are responsible for approximately 5,300 accidents each year. While less common than other types of driving accidents, over half of all head on collisions involve driver or passenger fatalities.
What To Do If You Are Involved In A Car Accident
In even a minor car accident, the injuries you sustain can be serious, potentially disabling, and even life threatening. You could be left with heavy medical bills and the need for ongoing treatment, while your injuries may prevent you from working, both now and in the future. Under Ohio financial responsibility laws, at fault drivers may be held legally accountable for any damages they cause, either through an insurance claim or through a personal injury lawsuit. In the event you are in an accident, make sure and follow these steps:
- Report the accident to the state police or to your local law enforcement;
- Call an ambulance to attend to any injured victims;
- Exchange your contact information and insurance, registration, and driver’s license number with other drivers at the scene;
- Make note of any witnesses to the accident, as well as the conditions at the accident scene, such as skid marks or the smell of alcohol on the other driver’s breath.
In addition to the above, get medical attention immediately for any injuries you suffer, regardless of how minor you think they may be. Many potentially serious conditions, such as head trauma, muscle sprains, and neck or back injuries, may not be readily apparent, and it can take days or even weeks to realize the full extent of the damage.
Reach Out to Us for Professional Assistance
If you or someone you care about has been injured in a car accident, contact Groth & Associates today. Our experienced Ohio car accident lawyers can advise you on how to get the compensation you need to recover. We can conduct a thorough investigation into your accident, obtaining police reports and medical records, and collecting witness statements. We may be able to represent you in negotiations with the insurance company, to ensure you get the maximum amount in any settlement. If a settlement cannot be reached, we can assist you in filing a personal injury claim for damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. When you have suffered serious injuries that impact affect your health and finances both now and in the future, you need the kind of legal help that gets results. We serve Toledo, Bowling Green, Fremont and the surrounding areas; call or contact us online today to schedule your free consultation.