Car accidents are one of the most common types of personal injury cases. In 2017, there were 127,375 wrecks in Virginia alone, according to the state Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Depending on the cause of the crash as well as state-specific compensation laws, car accident victims may be able to recover damages for their injuries. In Virginia, family members of those who suffered fatal injuries may also be able to obtain monetary compensation for the loss of their loved one in a wrongful death suit.
Top Causes of Car Wrecks
There are various causes of car accidents, the most common being driver error, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Some of the most common causes of preventable crashes include:
- Aggressive Driving: People who drive aggressively pose a hazard to themselves and others on the road. Aggressive drivers may cause accidents by running cars off the road, intentionally bumping into another vehicle, or physically assaulting other drivers.
- Auto Defects: Vehicles that are not functioning properly can cause drivers to get in accidents. Defective steering components, wiring systems, and other defects can lead to automaker or NHTSA recalls.
- Hazardous Road Conditions: Potholes, debris, inadequate signage, and other hazardous road conditions commonly cause car accidents. Additionally, weather-related road conditions, such as rain, ice, and fog, cause or contribute to more than 1.2 million car crashes each year, according to the Federal Highway Administration (FHA).
- Distracted Driving: The NHTSA reports that 3,166 people were fatally injured in distracted driving accidents in 2017. Texting, talking on the phone, eating, and applying makeup are all dangerous distractions that can lead to accidents.
- Drowsy Driving: The National Sleep Foundation’s Sleep in America poll found that 60 percent of Americans have driven while fatigued in the past year. Drowsy driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving and can affect coordination, reaction time, and other important functions.
- Drugged Driving: Drugged driving is against the law in all states. The NHTSA recently launched a campaign to raise awareness about the dangers of driving while impaired by marijuana, cocaine, prescription medications, and other drugs.
- Drunk Driving: Drunk driving is one of the most common causes of preventable accidents. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 29 people in the U.S. die every day in alcohol-related driving accidents.
- Speeding: Traveling at a high rate of speed can make car wrecks worse, and lead to catastrophic injuries.
Car Accident Personal Injury Claims in Virginia
A car accident victim’s ability to recover financial compensation and how much they will be eligible for depends on state law. Virginia follows the contributory negligence approach, which bars plaintiffs from recovering damages if they were any part responsible for the accident, even one percent. This strict law means that Virginia plaintiffs may have a more difficult time recovering for their car accident injuries than plaintiffs in other states. Our Virginia Beach car accident lawyers have experience handling all types of personal injury cases and understand what it takes to file a successful claim.
Wrongful Death Lawsuits
Those who have lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligence may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit. These types of cases must be filed by statutory beneficiaries within two years, including the surviving spouse, children, grandchildren, parents, or siblings. Damages available include compensation for mental anguish, loss of care, lost wages and benefits, related medical expenses, funeral and burial expenses, and punitive damages.
Our Virginia Beach Car Accident Lawyers Represent Victims of All Types of Car Accidents
If you were injured or you lost a loved one in a car accident, contact a Virginia Beach car accident lawyer today. At East Coast Trial Lawyers, we will hold the negligent party responsible for your injuries so that you can focus on your recovery. For a free consultation, please complete our online contact form or call us at 757-352-2237 today. Located in Virginia Beach, Virginia, we serve clients from the surrounding areas, including Chesapeake, Eastern Shores, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Suffolk.