Each year there are more than 6 million auto accidents in the U.S., about 30,000 of which are fatal. About 40% of all fatal crashes involved passenger cars, both nationally and in Boston. The Law Offices of attorneys work with individuals and families to help them navigate the complicated legal issues that arise out such car accidents.
Typical Causes of Car Accidents
Driving too fast for road conditions is one of the leading causes of fatal auto accidents in Massachusetts. Road conditions can include heavy traffic, slipperiness, visibility, and bad weather. Determining whether a driver was traveling too fast for such conditions may not be clear, since a driver’s ability to negotiate curves, keep his distance from other cars, and maneuver around obstacles differs from driver to driver. Thus, it may be difficult to determine whether the driver was sufficiently impaired to hold him or her liable for the accident. Other factors contributing to car accidents include:
Driving on the wrong side of the road
Failure to yield to the right of way
Dangerous lane changes
Driving too closely to other cars
The use of electronic devices
Failure to obey stop signals
Liability for Car Accidents
A driver may be liable for causing a car accident as a result of violating a Massachusetts statute. an operator or driver of a vehicle may even be liable for leaving the scene of a motor vehicle accident where the operator knows injury or damage has been caused. In such circumstances, the operator is liable for leaving the place of injury, damage, or accident without stopping to give his name, residence, motor vehicle number and driver’s license number to the injured party or a police officer.
A driver may also be liable under common law due as a result of negligence, reckless or wanton conduct, intentional misconduct, or strict liability. Establishing that a driver was at fault is a very difficult process that involves the consideration of many factors. When intentional or reckless misconduct is involved, such as the use of illicit substances, liability may be clear cut. However, when liability turns on whether a driver was negligent, the legal complexities can be overwhelming. Establishing fault becomes even more intricate when multiple cars are involved in an accident, since liability may be split among several drivers.