Belmar Car Accident Lawyers
New Jersey is one of the most densely populated states in the country, which means that the roads and highways in the Garden State are some of the most congested compared with other states. In addition to the bustling traffic, motorists must also know how to navigate traffic circles, jug handles, construction zones, and inclement weather conditions, as well as being aware of other motorists in the vicinity. Unfortunately, even the most responsible driver can be involved in a car accident if another motorist is not paying attention or is engaging in unsafe or negligent behavior while driving.
If you are injured in a car accident, you are urged to contact an experienced Belmar car accident lawyer as soon as possible.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Car Accidents?
One of the top causes of preventable car accidents is distracted driving. Despite knowing how dangerous distracted driving can be, too many motorists talk or text on their phones and engage in a range of other distracted behavior while driving. Although distracted driving is the most common cause of car accidents in New Jersey, there are several other examples of unsafe driving behaviors that can increase the risk of a serious car accident, including the following:
- Drunk driving: In addition to being against the law, getting behind the wheel of a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol is dangerous for a number of reasons. Alcohol causes slower reaction times, reduced concentration, drowsiness, and loss of coordination.
- Speeding: Speed limits are put into place for a reason. When motorists exceed the speed limit, they are at an increased risk for causing an accident. In addition, speeding often causes the resulting injuries to be much more severe, owing to the increased force of impact.
- Drowsy driving: Drowsiness can affect a driver’s concentration and ability to react quickly to an unexpected traffic situation. When a motorist has not gotten the recommended number of hours of sleep, this can have the same impact on the body as drunk driving.
- Reckless driving: All motorists are responsible for obeying the rules of the road. When drivers do not pay attention to other motorists, weave in and out of lanes, tailgate, or change lanes without using their signals, these are all examples of reckless driving.
- Aggressive driving: This is extremely dangerous because the aggressive driver behaves in a way that puts another motorist in danger. Uncontrolled aggressive driving can lead to road rage, which is defined as uncontrolled aggressive or violent behavior meant to cause harm to another motorist. Aggressive driving and road rage incidents should be reported to the local police or highway patrol.
What Are the Different Types of Car Accidents?
Car accidents can range from minor fender-benders to devastating collisions that involve multiple vehicles and severe injuries and fatalities. The following are examples of the different types of accidents that can occur on roads and highways across the United States:
- Rear-end accidents: These occur when the front of one vehicle hits the rear of another vehicle. In most cases, the motorist who rear-ends the other vehicle is considered at fault for the accident. However, if a motorist slams the brakes suddenly, he or she may be at least partially responsible for the accident.
- T-bone accidents/side-impact collisions: These accidents are very dangerous and often cause severe injuries and fatalities, particularly if the vehicle that crashed into the side of the other vehicle was traveling at a high speed. These usually happen when a driver disregards a stop sign or drives through an intersection when another vehicle is approaching.
- Head-on collisions: These devastating accidents almost always result in tragic fatalities because of the extreme nature of the collision. They often occur when a motorist swerves to avoid another vehicle that moved into their lane or suffers a tire blowout that causes them to lose control of the vehicle.
- Rollover accidents: These often occur when a vehicle approaches a turn going too fast. SUVs are particularly susceptible to rollover accidents, owing to their high center of gravity. The injuries associated with rollover accidents are often quite serious, particularly if the vehicle rolls over numerous times.
What Injuries Do Car Accidents Cause?
Motorists can suffer a wide range of injuries, depending on the type and seriousness of the accident. The following are examples of the different types of injuries that car accidents can cause:
- Head and back injuries
- Neck and chest injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Broken bones
- Cuts and lacerations
- Organ damage
- Internal injuries
- Emotional distress
What Steps Should I Take After a Car Accident?
Car accidents can be extremely stressful, particularly when there are injuries involved. In the heat of the moment, it is sometimes difficult to calm down and assess the situation. All motorists are urged to take the following steps if they are involved in a car accident:
- Do not leave the accident scene. Fleeing the scene of an accident can result in criminal penalties, particularly if the accident caused serious injuries or fatalities.
- Call 911. Police should be called to the scene of an accident, regardless of how serious it is. The police officer will fill out an accident report, which may include information about who was at fault. Make sure to get the name and badge number of the police officer.
- Check for injuries. Check yourself and the other motorists for injuries. Do not attempt to move someone who has suffered a neck or back injury, as this can aggravate the injury further. Wait for help to arrive unless not moving the person puts him or her in more danger.
- Take pictures. This will help determine who is at fault for causing the accident and provide key evidence when pursuing a personal injury lawsuit. Take pictures of the damage to the vehicles, your injuries, debris or skid marks on the road, and anything else that can help prove that the other motorist was at fault.
- Exchange information. In addition to obtaining the other driver’s contact information, driver’s license and license plate numbers, address and phone number, exchange insurance information with the other drivers involved in the accident.
- Contact your insurance company. Notify your insurance company that you were involved in a car accident so that your insurance agent can initiate the claims process.
- Seek immediate medical attention. Even if your injuries seem minor, always get examined by a medical professional after a car accident. Keep detailed records of all medical records, doctor’s appointments, and medical expenses, as this will help prove medical costs when seeking financial compensation.
- Contact an experienced car accident lawyer. This will ensure that your legal rights are protected and that you receive the appropriate financial compensation.
What Damages May I Receive After a Car Accident?
Car accident injuries range from minor cuts and scrapes to life-threatening, even fatal injuries, depending on the severity of the accident. The costs associated with a serious car accident injury can accumulate very quickly. A successful personal injury claim will ensure that those costs are recuperated. New Jersey is a no-fault state, which means that financial compensation is obtained through your insurance company. A successful personal injury claim will ensure that you are compensated for the following:
- Medical expenses: These include hospital costs, doctor visits, surgeries, physical therapy, prescription medication, and any other costs associated with the injury.
- Lost wages: If the injuries prevent you from being able to return to work for an extended period, this will compensate you for the loss in salary.
Non-economic damages, including pain and suffering, cannot be obtained through your car insurance. Rather, you have the option to sue the negligent party if you select the limitation on lawsuit option in your car insurance policy. To pursue a lawsuit, a qualified physician must certify that you suffered one of the following injuries:
- Displaced fractures
- Loss of fetus
- Permanent injury
- Significant disfigurement or scarring
New Jersey also follows the comparative negligence rule, which means that if the claimant is even partially responsible for causing the accident, the compensation they receive will be reduced by the percentage they were found to be at fault.
How Can I Avoid a Car Accident?
Most car accidents are preventable if motorists obey the rules of the road and avoid unsafe driving behaviors. The following are examples of proactive steps all drivers can take to stay safe behind the wheel and reduce the risk of a serious accident:
- Avoid distractions, including talking or texting on the phone.
- Do not drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Follow the speed limit.
- Avoid drowsy driving.
- Do not tailgate.
- Practice defensive driving.
- Wear a seat belt at all times.
Belmar Car Accident Lawyers at Ellis Law Represent Clients Injured in All Types of Collisions
If you were seriously injured in a car accident, do not hesitate to contact the Belmar car accident lawyers at Ellis Law. We will assist you with every step of the claims process and secure the financial compensation for which you are entitled. For a free consultation, call us at 732-308-0200 or complete our online form. We are located in Freehold, New Jersey, and help clients throughout Freehold, East Brunswick, Toms River, Middletown, Jersey City, Neptune, Hudson County, Union County, Essex County, Monmouth County, Marlboro, and Ocean County, as well as Brooklyn, New York, and New York City.