It can be difficult to determine which driver is at fault in a multi-car accident in Indiana and legally liable for the injuries suffered by others. It often takes an independent investigation to determine who should be held financially responsible and what they owe the injured.
The car accident lawyers of Truitt Law Offices can investigate the accident you were in and help you seek the compensation available by law. Fort Wayne car accident attorney Richard Truitt has successfully represented Indiana car accident victims and their families in Fort Wayne, Huntington, and communities throughout Northeastern Indiana for more than 40 years.
When a car accident involves three or more cars, there may be multiple parties who were negligent and multiple insurance policies available to provide compensation. The legal team at Truitt Law Offices will explore all the options for pursuing maximum compensation for you after a multi-car accident.
Working with a knowledgeable multi-vehicle accident attorney can be crucial to developing a strong accident claim. Allow the experienced and compassionate Fort Wayne car accident lawyers of Truitt Law Offices to review your case today. Contact us now for a free no-obligation legal consultation.
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What Are Some Types of Multi-Car Accidents?
In a pileup, a series of rear-end collisions often occur as vehicles run into cars that have already slowed or stopped to avoid a collision. These accidents are sometimes referred to as chain-reaction collisions, with one car after another hitting a crashed vehicle ahead.
In addition to rear-end collisions, we often see multi-vehicle car accidents resulting from:
- Sideswipe accidents. A driver making an unsafe lane change glances off of the side of another vehicle as it tries to merge, causing either car to spin out of control and collide with other vehicles.
- Intersection accidents. An accident can occur when a driver attempts to turn left at an intersection and misjudges the speed of approaching vehicles leading to a collision. When cars collide at high speed in an intersection, the impact can send one or both vehicles careening into others.
- Work zones. Highway construction zones are dangerous places for multi-vehicle accidents. Road work zones require traffic to slow down and often merge lanes, detour, or stop. If a driver fails to slow down in a work zone, the driver may be unable to stop if traffic ahead stops unexpectedly. The highway contractor operating a work zone may be liable for crashes if the construction zone was not properly designed with adequate warnings and room for traffic to safely slow and merge. It is more likely that a negligent driver failed to recognize the need to slow down for the upcoming work zone.
- Debris on the road. Debris on a highway, such as cargo that falls off a trailer, is a common cause of accidents, as drivers swerve or slam on breaks to avoid running into the obstacle on the road. A driver who avoids a crash may cause others to crash because of their sudden, unexpected maneuver. A chain reaction of multiple vehicles braking, swerving, and crashing may follow.
What Are Common Causes of Multi-Car Accidents?
Multi-vehicle accidents can result from many types of driver negligence. A driver may cause a multi-car collision by:
- Failing to look adequately before attempting a turn or changing lanes
- Misjudging the speed of an oncoming vehicle or the distance between vehicles
- Misjudging another driver’s intentions
- Violating traffic laws, such as failing to yield or running a red light or stop sign
- Speeding and losing control of a vehicle
- Driving while distracted
- Driving while impaired by alcohol, drugs, or excessive fatigue
After a multi-car accident, it is not unusual for additional collisions to occur because of distracted drivers straining to get a look at the accident. Sometimes, secondary accidents caused by rubbernecking drivers occur on the opposite side of divided highways adjacent to the original collision.
How Is Fault Determined in a Multi-Car Accident?
After a multi-vehicle accident, it may not be immediately apparent why the crash happened. As the number of cars in a multi-vehicle collision goes up, the difficulty of determining who has liability also increases. Insurers are more likely to try to shift the blame to avoid liability. More than one driver – or a third party such as a pedestrian – may have contributed to the accident as well.
Truitt Law Offices can investigate the multi-car accident that left you with serious injuries and gather evidence to support your claim for compensation. The evidence sought in crash investigations includes:
- Police reports. Responding officers record the identities of all involved, their injuries, the vehicles involved, their damage, and their final positions relative to each other. The police report contains the officer’s initial determinations about what happened and who if anyone was issued a traffic citation.
- Witness statements. This includes statements from those involved in the crash and anyone who may have seen it happen.
- Crash scene evidence. Skid marks, pavement gouges, and other evidence at the accident scene can be useful in determining how the accident occurred.
- Vehicle damage. Damaged vehicles can be evaluated to determine whether mechanical failures contributed to the crash.
- Event data recorders. The data recorders in newer vehicles contain data such as speed and trajectory at the time of impact, whether the driver braked, and whether cruise control was engaged.
- Surveillance footage. Security cameras at nearby businesses, ATMs, or public buildings may have captured the accident on video.
In a case involving a large multi-vehicle accident, our attorneys may work with accident reconstruction specialists to determine how the accident occurred.
Accident reconstruction specialists make a variety of sophisticated measurements to divide a pileup into separate crashes and determine how they happened. They study the evidence with a variety of forensic techniques to determine what occurred and where responsibility lies.
They provide us with narrative reports that include detailed graphics and can provide expert testimony supported by animated depictions of the most complex crashes.
Contact an Indiana Car Accident Lawyer Today
Multi-vehicle car accidents are often complex and confusing for those who have been injured or lost a loved one in them. The attorneys at Truitt Law Offices can investigate your accident, file your insurance claim and seek full compensation for you.
Don’t wait to seek help from an experienced multi-vehicle car accident lawyer at Truitt Law Offices. You generally have two years from the date of an auto accident to file a personal injury claim.
Make your first call your only call. At Truitt Law Offices, we work with crash victims and their families in Fort Wayne, Huntington, and across Northeastern Indiana. Contact us now for a free consultation.