Driving requires all your focus, with eyes on the road, mind engaged in safe driving techniques, and both hands on the steering wheel. While many responsible drivers do this every time they’re behind the wheel, it only takes one negligent driver to cause a crash that has terrible consequences. If you’ve been injured in an auto accident, you may be struggling with how to move forward. Filing a claim is how you can financially recover from the wreck. While going through the legal process, you’re going to want a reliable Rockville car accident lawyer from Belsky, Weinberg & Horowitz, LLC at your side.
Common Types of Car Accidents
When our auto accident lawyer looks into your case, we’re going to find out what type of accident you were involved in. It’s imperative to have as many details about the incident as possible. You may have been involved in one of the following types of collisions:
- Rear-end. This is when the front of one car hits the rear of another. Rear-end wrecks can happen at red lights when traffic slows down and stops, but the negligent driver doesn’t realize it until it’s too late.
- Multi-vehicle. When there’s heavy traffic, a multi-vehicle accident is more likely to occur. An accident could initially happen between two vehicles, but then other vehicles become involved because they don’t have time to slow down or steer out of the way.
- Sideswipe. Cars traveling in the same direction may make contact. This could happen if one driver doesn’t check their blind spots and tries to change lanes. The drivers may lose control of their vehicles in sideswipe collisions.
- Head-on Collision. When the front end of two cars crash, it’s called a head-on collision. Injuries in head-on collisions can be devastating, especially if the car occupants aren’t wearing seatbelts. If they’re not secure, they could be ejected through the windshield.
- Broadside Collision. Also known as a T-bone collision, the front end of a vehicle hits the side of another vehicle. These are common at intersections when a car is turning left. If the car doesn’t notice oncoming traffic, they could get in a broadside collision when they turn into the lane.
- Rollover. Larger vehicles are more likely to roll over—especially tractor-trailers. If a truck is improperly loaded and it takes a curve too fast, it could roll over and strike your vehicle.
No matter what type of accident you were in, you deserve compensation to cover your losses. Belsky, Weinberg & Horowitz, LLC will fight for you and will make your case as strong as possible. A main part of that is gathering evidence. Our Rockville car accident lawyer has extensive experience in analyzing evidence, which can help in determining the type of accident a client was in and the types of injuries that can arise from an auto wreck.
Car Accident Injuries
If you were injured in an accident, you may have had to stay in the hospital, undergo surgeries, or receive other forms of treatment. Other auto accidents may not cause such serious injuries and you may have been able to go home after the wreck. While auto collisions can cause various kinds of injuries ranging from mild to catastrophic, it’s important to know that even mild ones can cause pain and may require a recovery period before you’re ready to go back to work. Let’s go over some of the types of injuries:
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Broken Bones
- Spinal Cord Injury
A traumatic brain injury can happen when the head suffers a blow or bump. Mild TBIs can cause concussions, which may not be life-threatening, but will still require care for you to recover. For example, a doctor may say to limit screen time and to not participate in vigorous activity. Over time, you can slowly incorporate activity back into your life until you’re healed and are ready to resume your regular schedule. But some TBIs can have long-lasting damage and can even be life threatening. If someone has a severe TBI, they may show symptoms like nausea, repeated vomiting, seizures, a headache that will not go away or worsens, slurred speech, and more. It’s possible for those with severe TBIs to be unable to wake up from sleep. If permanent brain damage occurs, the person could live with a disability.
Broken bones can be extremely painful and can take a long time to heal. Even a fracture may need some kind of medical equipment and time—like keeping weight off a fractured foot. Broken arms, legs, ribs could affect a person’s mobility or regular function for months. They’ll have to learn how to safely take care of their injury and still do essential basic tasks like cooking and getting dressed. These can get more dangerous if the bone is exposed through skin. The injury site has a higher chance of getting infected. This could be especially dangerous for older adults or those with compromised immune systems.
Soft tissue injuries like sprains can also occur. These injuries can be deceiving because you may not be able to see them or even feel them directly after a car accident, but as time passes you can start to feel pain that indicates something is wrong.
In severe accidents, someone could lose their limb from the accident, or suffer enough nerve damage that amputation is necessary. Losing a limb could prevent someone from being able to return to their job and can completely upend their life.
Spinal cord injuries can cause limited mobility and reduced function from the injury site and down. If someone’s injury causes paralysis, they could have a disability for the rest of their lives.
When someone is in a high-speed collision and their seat belt holds them in place, they’re still carrying the momentum forward. While the seat belt can save lives and prevent more serious injuries, the restraint can cause bruising. Debris from shattered glass and broken parts of the car’s body can also cause deep cuts.
As part of your claim, we’ll need to determine how the other party acted negligently. Our auto accident attorney is familiar with the various ways this can occur. Let’s take a look at some of the most common causes of wrecks.
Understanding Why Collisions Happen
There are many reasons why your accident could have happened. Determining the cause is an important aspect of filing a claim because you need to be able to prove the crash wasn’t your fault and that you were impacted by it physically, economically, and emotionally. Some of the most common causes of wrecks our Rockville car accident lawyers help clients recover from include those involving intoxicated drivers, distracted driving, and aggressive or reckless drivers.
The legal limit for any driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC) is 0.08%. Different bodies process alcohol in different ways. Where one person may be able to consume three drinks and remain under the legal limit, another person may be put over the limit after only one. That’s why it’s so important to secure a ride when drinking. The more a person drinks, the less likely they are to realize just how drunk they’ve become. If they get behind the wheel, they could seriously injure or even kill an unsuspecting driver or pedestrian.
In Maryland, 1,716 people lost their lives to drunk drivers between 2003-2012. When a driver is intoxicated, their ability to safely operate a vehicle is severely affected. An intoxicated driver could swerve out of their lane, drive the wrong way on the street, or fall asleep at the wheel.
Distracted driving causes many accidents, too. When someone is texting, using their GPS, or fiddling with the radio, they’re more likely to crash. Others may try to accomplish tasks like flossing, applying makeup, or eating.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are three main types of distractions: visual, manual, and cognitive. Visual distractions take a driver’s eyes off the road, while manual takes their hands off the wheel. Both reduce the control a driver has over the vehicle. Cognitive distractions, which can be among the most dangerous, take a driver’s mind off the road. When a driver isn’t completely focused on the task at hand, they’re more likely to be unprepared to make an emergency stop or take a sharp turn properly.
Aggressive drivers tend to speed, tailgate, and weave through traffic. If another driver around them needs to brake or there is a sharp turn or debris, the aggressive driver may lose control of their vehicle. An aggressive driver may also try to speed through traffic lights as they’re changing from yellow to red, which puts others in the intersection in danger.
To combat reckless driving, the Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration asks drivers to show courtesy to others accessing the road, comply with traffic laws, heed all traffic signs, signals, and markings, and stay alert. Unfortunately, not all drivers operate their vehicles safely. When they don’t, it’s important to know what to do after a crash and when you should contact a car accident attorney.
An experienced auto accident lawyer from Belsky, Weinberg & Horowitz, LLC will carefully investigate the accident to find out who acted negligently and how it resulted in your crash. This may also require consulting with experts like an accident reconstructionist, who can provide more insight into how the accident happened. While you may think the other driver was automatically at fault for the accident, we may find that the accident occurred for another reason. If they had a faulty auto part that failed while they were driving, then the at-fault party could be the manufacturer. That’s why it’s vital to wait for all the evidence to be collected and examined before making claims about who was at fault.
Steps to Take Following a Crash in Rockville
The actions you take immediately following a crash could impact you for the rest of your life. Take a moment to evaluate what has happened. Examine yourself for visible injuries and check on any passengers in your car. If you can, locate the vehicle that hit you and check on those inside as well. If emergency medical services are needed, call 911.
It’s important for you to get a medical evaluation as soon as possible. The doctor will assess your injuries and you can start your recovery plan. Depending on your injuries, you could be looking at time at home resting, physical therapy, or surgery. It’s important to note that even if you feel okay after a crash, you should still be looked over. This is because not all injuries are visible, and others take time to progress.
After you’ve sought medical attention, you’ll need to collect contact information from the other driver. This includes the information on their driver’s license and their auto insurance policy information. Depending on the severity, you may need to give a statement to a police officer at the scene, who will then see to it that an official report is filed.
If you can, take pictures at the site of the accident. Make note of the damage to both vehicles, the weather conditions, and the state of the road. Your car accident lawyer will be able to use that information later to build a claim that proves how the other driver was negligent. For example, if you were struck at an intersection, traffic cameras will tell what color your light was when you traveled through and your photographs will show how you were hit by the driver that ignored their yellow or red light.
Once you’ve made it home and have taken some time to process what you’ve been through, it’s time to contact an attorney. They will help you file a personal injury claim, so you have access to the funds you need to recover as quickly and as fully as possible.
The Benefits of Having a Skilled Representative at Your Side
Shortly after your crash, it’s likely insurance companies will start contacting you. They want to determine fault and compensation as quickly as possible so they can maintain their bottom line. In fact, you could still be recovering in the hospital when insurance adjusters try to contact you.
If you receive a phone call from an insurance adjuster, it’s important to not give any information about your accident until you’ve spoken with an auto accident lawyer. They may seem friendly and conversational at first, but then they may start asking detailed questions. Their goal is to get you to make statements about the accident or your injuries because they can use those statements against you to lower your settlement.
An insurance adjuster will also try to get you to settle early. You need to take the time to find the full extent of your injuries and know what the accident truly cost you in damages. Settling early could mean you get an unfavorable settlement that didn’t take everything into account because you didn’t know about it yet.
Get Reliable Representation Today
After a car accident in Rockville, you may feel like you don’t know how you’re going to get the care you need, get the time you need to recover from your injuries, and keep up with your other responsibilities. You don’t have to go through the legal process alone. You need representation that has experience in seeking compensation when negligence has occurred, and our Rockville auto accident lawyer will always act in your best interests.
Belsky, Weinberg & Horowitz, LLC is here to help the citizens of Rockville get back on their feet after they’ve been wrongfully injured. We aren’t intimidated to stand up to negligent parties and show them how their actions caused the injury of another. Our auto accident attorneys are prepared to diligently investigate every aspect of your case so we understand the full extent of your physical and emotional injuries, as well as what the accident has cost you and will continue to cost you financially. We’ll use this information to demand full and fair compensation for you.
It’s important to act quickly so we can start helping you as soon as possible. All you have to do is schedule a consultation with us, free of charge. When we meet, we’ll go over the details of your case and find out the best way to help you. We’re ready to answer your questions and give you the information you need so you can make an informed decision. Then, we can work on building your case so you can get justice and work on your recovery.