What to Do After a Car Crash in Riverside
With so many drivers on California roads, and a public transportation system that has yet to catch up with increasing populations in Southern California’s major cities, car accidents on our roadways almost seem inevitable.
Accidents happen, but if you are an auto accident victim in need of a personal injury attorney, what you do following your accident can be critically important for your future. Seeking a qualified Riverside car accident lawyer is the best possible way to help you find justice and the compensation you may deserve as a result of your accident.
The Riverside car accident lawyers at Wilshire Law Firm have over 15 years of experience representing clients who have been injured in car accidents in Los Angeles.
The car accident attorneys in Riverside are experts in guiding you through the legal process and ensuring that you receive the compensation that you may be entitled to as a result of your accident.
If you or a family member has been involved in a car accident due to the negligence or recklessness of another party, contact an experienced personal injury attorney at Wilshire Law Firm for a free consultation and to ensure that you know your rights.
Why Do Car Accidents Happen?
With features like autonomous braking, lane-keep assist, and forward-collision warning hitting the market over the past two decades, it’s clear that car manufacturers are investing in technologies that prevent accidents and keep drivers and passengers safer.
In fact, vehicles may be safer than they’ve ever been. But despite the many accident prevention measures introduced over the past twenty years, more than 7.2 million vehicle accidents were reported to police in the United States in 2016, a 15 percent increase over the previous year.
Even though vehicles might be safer now, driving a car is still the most dangerous everyday activity around. One of the biggest contributing factors, of course, is driver error. Additionally, car accidents tend to take place for the following reasons:
- Distracted Driving – Cell phones, conversations with passengers, even something as innocent as changing the station on the radio can lead to an auto accident.
- Alcohol Use – Fatal crashes involving an alcohol-impaired driver accounted for 29 percent of all traffic fatalities in 2017.
- Recklessness – Speeding was cited as a contributing factor in more than 10,000 traffic fatalities in 2016, the highest figure since 2012.
- Poor/Unsafe Road Conditions – Strong rains and a stiff wind can both play a part in vehicle accidents. Cars may hydroplane, slip out of control, or suddenly veer into the path of another vehicle due to adverse conditions. Furthermore, roads that are not properly maintained by government authorities can contribute to car accidents.
- Mechanical Defect – If a car is not properly maintained, or if it is designed, built, or sold with defective parts, then a vehicular crash can occur due to a mechanical malfunction.
Regardless of the cause, there are a number of accident situations that occur more often than others. Consulting with a Riverside car accident lawyer who has years of experience with each kind of auto accident can make all the difference in your personal injury case.
Common Types of Car Accidents
Our professional team of Riverside car accident lawyers works with you each step of the process. A Riverside car accident attorney at Wilshire Law Firm understands that determining the type of car crash is critical for seeking compensation.
If you’ve been involved in a motor vehicle accident, chances are that it was one of these common accident types:
- Head-on collisions
- Hit and run accidents
- Rear-end collisions
- Side-impact or T-bone collisions
- Low-impact collisions
- Pile-up/Multi-car accidents
- Left-turn accidents
- Intersection accidents
- Sideswipe accidents
- Merging accidents
- Failure to yield accidents
- Rollover accidents
- Single-car accidents
Following a serious motor vehicle accident, victims deal with property loss and damaged vehicles. However, that’s not the most serious repercussion they may face. Life-threatening injuries are the most serious and immediate consequence of a motor vehicle accident.
At Wilshire Law Firm, an experienced Riverside auto accident lawyer is equipped to handle any kind of accident that results in a personal injury in Southern California.
Riverside Car Accident Statistics
Auto accidents are one of the leading causes of death in the U.S. According to shaperivco.org, a community-wide effort to coordinate the resources of public health system partners to improve health in Riverside County, deaths due to car accidents are rising steadily each year in Riverside.
Here are some more statistics about drivers involved in car accidents:
- In 2017, Riverside had the second-highest rate of persons killed in alcohol-involved crashes, after Los Angeles County.
- The number of injuries or deaths as a result of truck crashes in Riverside is steadily rising each year.
- Riverside licenses over 1.5 million drivers each year, or about half of its population.
- In 2017, Riverside had the fourth-highest number of injuries as a result of an auto accident in California.
- According to Statista, a majority of deaths from motor vehicles in California involve passenger cars, with light trucks and motorcycles accounting for a smaller portion of such deaths.
- In 2017, October saw the highest number of injuries as a result of motor vehicle accidents in California, while February saw the least.
- Most motor vehicle accidents that cause injury or death in California happen on clear days, due to the near-perfect climate of the state.
- Car accidents that result in injury in California are much more likely to occur during the day than at night.
- Car accidents that result in death are most likely to occur at dusk or dawn.
Leading Causes of Vehicle Crashes
Despite all of the built-in safety features of modern vehicles, there are a variety of causes of car accidents and crashes. Seasoned Riverside car accident attorneys at Wilshire Law Firm can help you seek appropriate compensation for any injuries as a result of the accident.
Here are the leading causes of car accidents:
- Driving or bicycling under the influence of alcohol or drug
- Impeding traffic
- Unsafe speed
- Following too closely
- Wrong side of the road
- Improper passing
- Unsafe lane change
- Improper turning
- Auto right-of-way
- Pedestrian right-of-way
- Pedestrian violation
- Traffic signals and signs
- Unsafe starting or backing
The cause of the auto accident is always an important factor in determining and obtaining monetary compensation as the victim. Contacting a Riverside car accident attorney at Wilshire Law Firm can ensure you receive the monetary damages you may be entitled to.
Common Auto Collision Injuries
In 2016 nearly 3.2 million people were injured in motor vehicle crashes, according to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Don’t be fooled, either; even low-impact and low-speed accidents can cause serious injuries. Some of the most common car accident and truck accident injuries include:
- Spinal cord injury
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
- Internal bleeding
- Broken bone(s)
- Road rash/cuts
- Emotional distress
- Other very serious injuries
Many car accident victims may not immediately feel the full effects of being in an accident; this is due to the surge in adrenaline that most accident victims experience.
If you’ve been involved in a car accident or truck accident, it’s important to seek prompt medical attention to determine the true extent of your injuries. Wilshire Law Firm’s extensive network of medical, investigative, and other experts can help put accident victims on their path to recovery.
Ways to Reduce Your Risk of an Accident
Car accidents are devastating, but there are steps drivers can take to reduce their risk of getting into an accident. If you’re looking to keep both yourself and everyone else safer on the road, follow these tips whenever you hit the road:
- Keep your vehicle roadworthy – Not keeping up with your car’s maintenance schedule can lead to big trouble down the line. You should also use the NHTSA’s safety issue and recall tool to verify that your car has no known safety issues.
- Avoid drugs and alcohol – Just like the cars they ride in, drivers need to remain roadworthy too. Drivers should be well-rested and in “good driving condition” before getting behind the wheel.
- Be a defensive driver – Drivers should be aware of the drivers around them, the speed that both they and the cars around them are traveling at, and how closely they’re following the cars in front of them; always pay attention to what the other cars on the road are doing.
- Eyes on the road – Drivers should turn off their cell phones, lower the radio volume, and remove any other distractions that prevent them from focusing on the road ahead.
What Should I Do If I’m Involved in an Accident?
When a car crash occurs, it always takes us by surprise. Nevertheless, it’s important to be prepared in the event you find yourself involved in an accident. There are specific steps that accident victims should take to protect both their physical health and their legal rights, including:
- Don’t panic – Move all vehicles out of the roadway, if possible.
- Check for injuries – Evaluate the people involved in the accident for injuries, and call for emergency medical services as required. Even drivers who don’t think they are seriously hurt should be examined by a medical professional as soon as possible.
- Call the police – You should request an ambulance as well, if necessary. Ask the police to create a detailed accident report for your records.
- Exchange contact and insurance information with the other driver(s) – Don’t admit liability at the scene or when speaking with the other party’s insurance company.
- Begin collecting evidence – Take pictures of the damage with your cell phone, along with the accident scene as a whole. Get the contact information of any witnesses, and gather any debris that may have broken off from your vehicle in the accident
- Consult with a Riverside car accident lawyer at Wilshire Law Firm – With over $900,000,000 recovered for their clients, an exceptional personal injury lawyer at Wilshire Law Firm will utilize proven legal strategies to get car accident victims the compensation they deserve.
Who Is Liable for Your Injuries?
The determination of who is at fault in a car accident is determined by negligence. A person is negligent when their behavior is thoughtless or careless and causes injury to another person or themselves.
A defensive driver utilizes safe strategies to address identified hazards in a predictable manner. These strategies can go well beyond knowing basic traffic laws and regulations.
If the driver of a vehicle is not driving defensibly near another, they can be found guilty of negligence and liable for injuring the accident victim.
The team at our car accident law firm in Riverside can provide you with a Riverside car accident lawyer who is well-versed in determining negligence in auto accidents.
Statute of Limitations in Riverside Automobile Accident Claims
In most cases, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim is two years from the date of the accident, but there are many complicating factors that can either shorten or lengthen the time a victim has to file a claim following an accident.
To protect their claim, accident victims should retain the services of an exceptional Riverside personal injury lawyer at Wilshire Law Firm to ensure they receive the maximum compensation they are entitled to.
How a victim deals with the other party’s insurance company can make all the difference between a successful claim and an unsuccessful one.
The award-winning car accident lawyers at Wilshire Law Firm have extensive experience dealing with insurance companies; we know all of the tricks they use to minimize their payouts and have developed proven legal strategies that get results for our clients.
Our outstanding team of legal professionals will conduct a thorough accident investigation, arrange for victims to receive the medical treatment they require and handle all insurance-related paperwork and negotiations so victims can focus on recovering from their accident.
Our Zero Fee Guarantee means our clients aren’t charged a cent in legal fees unless and until we make a recovery – no hidden conditions, no hidden fees.
Wilshire Law Firm understands the challenges that a car accident can bring – we fight every single day to get accident victims the justice they deserve. Time may be limited to file a claim, so ACT NOW.
With more than $900,000,000 recovered for our clients, our compassionate, client-first approach is proven to get results. To find out how the best auto accident attorneys in Riverside can help you, contact Wilshire Law Firm now at (800) 522-7274 or fill out our online contact form. We have 24/7 support, someone is available for you immediately.
Compensation for Your Damages
If you’ve been injured in a car accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence or recklessness, you deserve monetary compensation for your medical bills and losses.
The true cost of a seemingly minor accident can quickly become expensive; injuries can take months, even years to fully heal, and lost wages and other expenses can begin to pile up.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you may be entitled to the following compensation:
- Specific Damages – Past and future medical bills; Lost wages; Lost earning potential; Necessary home or vehicle modifications; Repair/replacement services such as child care or home and vehicle maintenance
- General Damages – Physical pain and suffering; Loss of consortium; Emotional distress
The most important key to successfully proving your car accident claim? Identifying the liable party or parties. Depending on the circumstances of your case, there are a number of parties who may ultimately be found liable for the damages you have suffered, including:
- Other drivers
- Vehicle owners
- Driver employers (if the other driver was on the clock)
- Manufacturers/Shipping companies/Retailers/Marketers
One complicating factor in a car accident claim: What happens if you were partially at fault for your accident?
California deals with this scenario through a system called Pure Comparative Fault. Also known as Pure Comparative Negligence, this system reduces the compensation awarded to car accident victims by their degree of fault in an accident. If, for example, you are determined to be 20% at fault for an accident, then the total compensation awarded to you will be reduced by 20%.
Another factor that can impact your case? If the at-fault driver doesn’t have car insurance. Unfortunately, there are many drivers here in California who are either uninsured or underinsured – some insurance industry studies place the percentage of uninsured drivers in California at more than 15%.
Because of the high number of uninsured drivers, it’s critical that you carry uninsured motorist benefits. This way, if you are unfortunately involved in a car accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist, you can recover damages directly from your insurer instead of filing a claim with a third party. Without underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage, you may not be able to recover any damages that result from your accident.
Free Consultation with a Riverside Car Accident Lawyer
At Wilshire Law Firm, our team of qualified personal injury lawyers specializes in helping individuals or their families whose lives have been impacted by a car accident.
We know how to deal with the legal system and insurance companies to ensure that you get any compensation that you may deserve if your accident is caused by another party’s negligence.
Let’s talk about your situation and let us help you understand your rights and fight for the compensation you may deserve. We offer free consultations and are eager to work with you.