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Reasons Why Car Accidents Happen in Phoenix

Although the traffic in Phoenix is not as bad as it is in other large cities, the roads in the area are by no means safe. Although the number of traffic accidents has fallen recently, the number of motor vehicle fatalities continues to rise, hitting recent highs. While that is largely in line with national trends, unique risk factors increase the danger for Phoenix drivers. Arizona roads, while not the most dangerous in the country, are more hazardous than average. This is even without the rain and harsh weather that endanger drivers in other states.

Here are some of the reasons why car accidents happen in Phoenix, including some that are specific to our local and regional area:

Heavy Truck Traffic

Phoenix is in a central area as far as truck traffic is concerned. The city is between the major population centers of Texas and California. In addition, trucks come up through Arizona from the Mexican border on their way to the rest of the country. Truck traffic has been steady in Phoenix, and it has only increased recently. Now, the rise of online shopping means far more trucks on the road than in the past. Trucking companies cannot get enough truck drivers to haul their goods.

Giants like Walmart and Amazon have built massive new distribution facilities in Arizona, meaning even more truck traffic in the area. One of the largest Walmart distribution centers in the world is in Casa Grande, just an hour south of Phoenix. If it seems like you see Walmart trucks everywhere, you are probably right.

All of this truck traffic raises the risks for drivers, especially when the drivers may be inexperienced and insufficiently trained. Motorists must share the road with these large trucks that can weigh more than 25 times more than their own vehicles. Many of these trucks come straight through Phoenix, taking up space on area highways and forcing drivers to be extra careful. Trucks often cannot see out of their blind spots, but it does not stop drivers from speeding to make up time and get in more driving before they have to stop to rest.

Highway Dangers

Statistics show that Arizona’s urban highways are far more dangerous than the average highway in terms of fatality numbers. Over a recent two-year period, there were 207 fatal accidents on freeways in the Valley area. This breaks down to one every five days. One study showed that the rate of fatalities on Arizona’s urban highways and freeways is 61 percent higher than the national average.

These statistics are puzzling because the urban freeways in Arizona are generally wide. In fact, officials may widen I-10 in the city to eight lanes. However, highways with plenty of lanes, while reducing traffic, also encourage dangerous driving practices. Especially, these involve speeding and reckless driving through sudden lane changes. I-17 north of Phoenix routinely makes national lists of the most dangerous highways.

Arizona highway accidents have more to do with reckless driving than they do with traffic. Statistics show that more than half of traffic fatalities on these roads happen between Friday and Sunday when there is less traffic on these roads. While you can control your actions, you have no control over another driver’s recklessness and lack of regard for your own safety.

Drivers Unfamiliar With City and Suburban Roads

One thing that the Phoenix area has is roads and lots of them. Even though there is a growing mass transit system, the Valley is a mecca for the automobile. Beyond that, Phoenix is a very spread-out metro area because it can constantly expand into the desert. There are nearly 5,000 miles of roads just in Phoenix. This does not include roads in Scottsdale, Tempe, Gilbert, and other surrounding areas.

The upshot is that drivers have a smaller chance of knowing where they are going when traveling on such an expansive network of roads. There is a greater chance they will be on unfamiliar terrain, struggling to figure out where they are going. Lost drivers are dangerous because they can miss stop signs and red lights. Figuring out where they are going and stopping to look at their phones for directions may distract them. Being lost may also affect their concentration and their ability to deal with sudden dangers around them.

The rise of ridesharing companies has caused the number of distracted and lost drivers to increase. Many Uber and Lyft drivers spend their days on unfamiliar roads trying to squeeze out a living. They have one eye on their app, struggling to figure out where they are going.

Busy Intersections

Because Phoenix is a newer city than most, it has wider roads than many older cities that carry more traffic. While that may make life easier for motorists traveling in one direction, it can become far harder to make a turn. This is especially true when an intersection is within a mile of a highway (and Phoenix has many highways). When that happens, cars tend to back up, making getting through an intersection and turning even harder.

Some of Phoenix’s major roads can carry between 60,000-80,000 cars per day. Some of the busiest roads are Camelback and McDowell Roads. There is an average of over 20,000 crashes at intersections each year in the Phoenix area, as intersections here are busier than they are in most cities. Drivers often misjudge the intersection and the amount of time that they have to turn. Other drivers may run red lights, either because they did not see them or because they were trying to make it through the light.

Continuous Construction Zones

While much of the Phoenix area seems relatively new, it is old enough that the infrastructure now needs repair. This especially applies to the expansive road network in the area. Phoenix is currently in the midst of a five-year campaign to repair roads in the area. Recently, the city passed a measure that tripled the number of roadway miles in its maintenance program. There are continuous construction zones on both major highways and city streets.

Phoenix roads are in less than ideal shape, and the city will need to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to fix that. Only about 30 percent of the roads in the area are considered to be in excellent shape. Arizona is committed to fixing roads in the area, but it requires almost near-continuous construction. Even on city streets, work zones will present a danger to those passing through due to some of the sudden changes in roadway conditions and narrow lanes. When other drivers do not slow down and pay attention in work zones, they cause accidents that injure and kill other drivers who are following the rules.

Angry Drivers

Arizona also has a major road rage epidemic throughout the state. The problem is only getting worse in recent years as drivers act far more aggressively behind the wheel. These drivers will be out of control, driving recklessly and placing other drivers in danger. There have been numerous reports of road rage shootings in the Phoenix area.

A driver does not have to resort to violence to harm someone else. Some drivers may tailgate or drive erratically in their effort to get the last word in a roadway dispute. Tailgating can lead to rear-end crashes. Aggressive driving can cause another motorist to lose control of their car. It can even hurt other drivers and their passengers in the area who had absolutely nothing to do with the initial incident.

The Phoenix Heat

While Phoenix does not have rain and snow to make its roadways dangerous, heat can actually make things worse for drivers. Motorists are not at their best during the hot days of a Phoenix summer. One study showed that drivers have nearly a 3 percent higher risk of a car accident during a heatwave (and the entire Phoenix spring and summer is considered a heatwave).

Driver performance actually gets worse on very hot days. That same study showed a 7 percent higher chance of a driver performance error causing a crash on extremely hot days. Motorists are more likely to make errors when they are weary and fatigued from extreme heat. It does not matter whether Phoenix drivers are used to the heat—it can still wear them down during the 100-degree-plus days.

In addition to factors specific to Phoenix mentioned above that cause accidents, area drivers also face the same risks as drivers in other cities for car accidents. Below, we will describe some of these hazards.

Distracted Driving

Many people pin the rise in car accident fatalities on the advent of the smartphone. This is a major reason for road danger. Drivers may miss stop signs or veer out of their lane because they had their eyes down on their road as opposed to focusing on the road. A car can travel the length of a football field in just a few seconds. The same amount that it takes to send a text. Cars cannot apply the brakes to avoid rear-ending cars in front of them, nor can they avoid dangers around them. Not only does this increase the risk of a crash, but it makes car accidents far deadlier.

Cell phones are just one part of distracted driving. People do everyday activities while driving instead of keeping both hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. This includes things like eating and doing their makeup. In one year, over 3,000 people were killed nationally in distracted driving crashes.

Drunk Driving

Arizona ranks in the upper half of states in terms of DUI fatalities as a percentage of total motor vehicle deaths. Arizona’s DUI fatalities are higher than the national average. This is part of why more of Arizona’s highway traffic deaths occur on the weekends than during weekday rush hours. While Arizona has stiff penalties for DUI, it does not stop people in the state from driving drunk.

Alcohol slows down drivers’ reaction times, and it causes them to be unable to perceive what is occurring around them. Some drivers will take far more risks when driving drunk because they have lost inhibitions and judgment. This results in reckless driving and speeding.

Fatigued Driving

Driving without the proper amount of rest can be every bit as dangerous as drunk driving. When motorists have been more than 20 hours without sleep, it is the same as driving with a blood alcohol content of .08 (which is the legal limit). Fatigued driving also dulls a driver’s reflexes and keeps them from managing what is happening on the road around them.

This problem can be particularly bad with truck drivers. Even with federal regulations limiting the amount of time that they can drive, they may still not get the proper rest. Driving a large and fully-loaded truck requires a trained driver with all of their reflexes and wits about them.

Speeding

Phoenix Auto Injury Lawyer Dave Abels
Dave Abels, Phoenix Car Accident Lawyer

The long highways and multi-lane roads encourage Phoenix drivers to go fast, despite the speed limits. Even stiff penalties for reckless driving and speeding do not slow them down. In a recent year, speed-related accidents killed 281 people, and nearly another 3,000 suffered an injury.

Nationally, speeding is the third most common cause of car crashes. Drivers cannot brake when they have to, and they can lose control of their car when they are speeding.

Other drivers who are traveling at the posted speed limit end up being in the wrong place at the wrong time. The problem is equally as bad on urban roads, even when there are lower posted speed limits. In fact, it can be worse because there are likely to be other drivers in the vicinity who suffered an injury.

These are only some of the many causes of car crashes in Phoenix. Always contact a Phoenix car accident attorney if you need legal assistance.

Phoenix Office
714 E Rose Ln
#200
Phoenix, AZ 85014

Toll Free: (855) 749-5299
Local: (602) 819-5191
Fax: (602) 819-4841

 

Should I Call a Lawyer After Rear-end Collision Injuries in Phoenix?

Traffic in and around Phoenix, Arizona, has increased significantly over the past few years. With this increase in traffic comes the heightened potential for rear-end motor vehicle crashes in that locale. In addition to Downtown Phoenix, there is significant traffic on the local interstate highways, including I-40, I-410, I-510, and I-710.
At downtown intersections, rear-end collisions happen when drivers fail to stop or accelerate too quickly.

In contrast, rear-end collisions on interstate highways occur when traffic suddenly backs up and overzealous drivers can’t stop in time. Some rear-end collisions that occur on these highways also involve more than two vehicles. These chain-reaction collisions happen when the front of one vehicle strikes the rear of another vehicle and so on, creating a domino effect.

Although rear-end accidents are common on highways and other roadways around Phoenix, these accidents are not limited to Arizona. In fact, according to statistics provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 29 percent of traffic accidents that occur throughout the United States are rear-end-crashes. These rear-end collisions happen for various reasons, but the most common reason is driver negligence, error, and inattentiveness. In fact, when a rear-end collision occurs, the law assumes that the rear driver is at fault for the accident.

Rear-end accidents can also lead to debilitating injuries that require medical treatment, hospital stays, surgeries, and sometimes physical therapy. This treatment can be expensive, and victims of rear-end traffic accidents often face high medical bills and other damages. Fortunately, the victims of these accidents may be in a position to file a claim or lawsuit that seeks monetary compensation for their injuries. You’ll want to call a Phoenix car accident lawyer for help.

If you have suffered an injury in a rear-end car collision, your primary concern should be getting the medical treatment that you need to recover from your injuries. Even if you are not feeling symptoms immediately after your accident, it is important that you at least follow up at a hospital emergency room or local urgent care center and get checked out.

This is because symptoms of rear-end collisions do not always show up right away. In fact, symptoms can sometimes take days or even weeks to become apparent. At your initial hospital or urgent care visit, a health care provider will have the opportunity to examine you, and if necessary, refer you for follow-up treatment with a primary care doctor or specialist.

In addition to seeking follow-up medical care and treatment for your injuries, consult an experienced Phoenix car accident attorney about your accident as soon as possible. An attorney can meet with you to discuss the facts of your accident and how it occurred. Your lawyer could also determine if you can file a car accident claim, and if so, he or she could file the claim on your behalf. In short, your attorney can handle all of the legal aspects of your case while you focus the bulk of your time and attention on recovering from your car accident injuries and getting better.

Ways that Injury-causing Rear-end Collisions Happen

Drivers could avoid many rear-end car accidents and injuries if they simply took the time to watch their speeds and slow down. When drivers violate speed limits and operate their vehicles overzealously, they increase the chances that they will bring about a serious rear-end-type collision in which they will injure other drivers or passengers. Some of the most common causes of rear-end car collisions that lead to serious injuries include the following:

Drunk and Intoxicated Driving

When drivers operate a vehicle while they are impaired—or under the influence of alcohol—they put others at significant risk. Since alcohol is a depressant, consuming it can slow down the central nervous system’s ability to function correctly. A driver who is under the influence may experience delayed reaction times, impaired vision, and other complications while driving. Impaired reaction time plays a big part in a driver’s inability to stop his or her vehicle, often bringing about a rear-end collision with another vehicle.

A driver is per se intoxicated if his or her blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is 0.08 percent or greater. Even a driver with a lower than 0.08 percent BAC could be sufficiently impaired to cause a serious rear-end car crash. In addition to being found criminally liable for drunk driving, a person whom a court finds guilty or convicts could also face a civil suit if he or she causes an accident that leads to injuries. When that happens, the drunk driver’s motor vehicle insurance company steps in to cover the damages.

Violating the Arizona Rules of the Road

Arizona rules of the road regarding speed limits, yielding the right-of-way, and traffic signals are in place to help prevent accidents—including rear-end accidents—from occurring. When drivers go over the speed limit, fail to allow enough stopping distance, or disregard a traffic signal, they increase the chances of bringing about a rear-end collision that leads to serious injuries. All Phoenix drivers must operate their vehicles in a safe, careful, and prudent manner at all times.

Distracted motor vehicle operation

Distracted driving occurs when a motor vehicle operator pays attention to something other than the roadway, such as a cellular phone, tablet, or other electronic devices that are present in the vehicle with him or her. Distracted driving also happens when a driver turns his or her head to discipline a young child in the back seat or listens to loud music in the car.

If you have suffered an injury in a rear-end collision that occurred because of negligent motor vehicle operation, a knowledgeable Phoenix car collision attorney in your area could assist. A lawyer can investigate your accident and assist you with any claim or lawsuit that you may file for your injuries.

Rear-end Car Accident Injuries

When the front of one motor vehicle collides with the rear of another vehicle, serious injuries can result. In a rear-end car crash, injuries that involve the head, shoulders, neck, and back are especially common. This is because the collision can create a sharp jerking motion that quickly moves the accident victim’s body forward and backward. This abrupt movement can result in a whiplash or soft-tissue injury.

In addition, the force of the collision may cause some part of the accident victim’s body to forcefully strike the inside of the vehicle. For example, an accident victim could strike his or her head on the steering wheel, headrest, or window, sustaining a traumatic head or brain injury (including a concussion). A part of the accident victim’s body might also strike the front console, dashboard, or door, resulting in a serious and debilitating injury.

Some of the most common injuries that victims of rear-end car crashes suffer include abrasions, bruises, cuts, scrapes, fractures, broken bones, soft tissue injuries, spinal cord injuries, and internal damage.

In addition to seeking prompt medical attention at a hospital or urgent care center following a Phoenix rear-end collision, accident victims may also need to follow up with a primary care doctor or a medical specialist, such as an orthopedist, for the injuries he or she sustained. In serious car accident cases, accident victims may need to undergo an operation, such as surgery, at a high financial cost.

In cases where an accident victim’s injury causes him or her to experience a significant amount of pain, the accident victim may need to receive an injection or participate in some other type of pain management treatment. Finally, the accident victim might need to participate in physical therapy sessions to get back to normal.

If you have suffered an injury in a Phoenix rear-end accident, your first step should be to seek prompt medical treatment as soon as you possibly can. You should also follow up with a knowledgeable Phoenix rear-end collision attorney as soon as possible after your accident. Your attorney will explain all of your legal options and help you decide on the best option for pursuing the compensation you deserve for your car accident injuries.

The Importance of Seeking Prompt Medical Treatment Following Your Rear-end Car Crash

One of the most important things that you can do following a rear-end car crash is to seek prompt, same-day medical treatment. There are several reasons why it is important to seek medical treatment as soon as possible after your accident. The first reason is that in many instances, symptoms of injuries do not become apparent until several days or weeks have passed after your accident.

If you wait until too late to get medical attention, a relatively minor injury can become much worse. When you seek initial medical treatment, a hospital or urgent care doctor can examine you and run the necessary tests and imaging studies, such as MRIs and X-rays, to determine your medical condition. The healthcare provider can also recommend follow-up medical treatment, such as with a specialist or a primary care doctor, in the event you may need it.

Another important reason to seek prompt medical treatment is for your car accident case. If you do not seek follow-up medical treatment after your accident, the at-fault driver’s insurance company may believe that you are not taking your injuries seriously and/or that you were not all that seriously injured in the accident. As a result, the insurance company may offer you less compensation than if you had been treated for your injuries right away.

In a motor vehicle collision claim, the at-fault driver’s insurance company will not do you any favors. Rather, they will do whatever they can to minimize the extent of your injuries to offer you as little monetary compensation as possible. Delaying medical treatment after your accident gives the insurance company additional ammunition to undervalue your case.

Once you have undergone initial medical treatment following your accident, you should continue treating your injuries regularly, ensuring that there are no large gaps in your treatment. Again, suppose the insurance company sees gaps of weeks or months in your medical care. In that case, it will assume that the treatment at issue was not necessary—or that it was not related to the injuries that you suffered in your accident.

Once you have completed all medical treatment for your accident-related injuries, a knowledgeable Phoenix car accident lawyer can file a claim on your behalf. Once your attorney files your claim with the insurance company, your attorney can negotiate with the adjuster to pursue a favorable settlement offer.

Deadline for Filing a Phoenix Rear-end Collision Claim or Lawsuit

If you have suffered injuries in a Phoenix rear-end motor vehicle collision, you should retain a knowledgeable attorney to represent you in your case as soon as possible. This is because of the two-year Arizona statute of limitations. In Arizona, victims of car accidents have only two years from the date of their accident in which to file a claim or lawsuit in the court system. If you don’t file a claim or lawsuit within two years, you can’t recover monetary compensation for your injuries.

An experienced Phoenix rear-end accident lawyer can file a timely claim or lawsuit in your case, ensuring that you can pursue the compensation you need for the injuries, pain, and suffering that you had to endure following your accident. The right lawyer will understand how costly a rear-end crash can be and will protect your rights.

Speak With an Experienced Phoenix Rear-end Collision Lawyer Today About Your Legal Matter

Phoenix Auto Injury Lawyer Dave Abels
Dave Abels, Phoenix Car Accident Lawyer

If you suffered injuries in a Phoenix rear-end accident, a knowledgeable Phoenix car accident attorney can assist you.

If the insurance company won’t offer you the compensation that you need for your injuries, your attorney could file a lawsuit and litigate your case to a prompt and efficient conclusion.

Phoenix Office
714 E Rose Ln
#200
Phoenix, AZ 85014

Toll Free: (855) 749-5299
Local: (602) 819-5191
Fax: (602) 819-4841

 

What Should I Do After a Rear-end Collision in Phoenix?

Phoenix, Arizona, has a lot of traffic. With its interstate highway system, rural roadways, and downtown traffic intersections, rear-end car crashes in and around Phoenix are relatively common. The sheer volume of traffic on Interstates 40, 410, 510, and 710 increases the possibility that a rear-end collision will occur—especially when traffic backs up quickly and a driver fails to stop in time. Rear-end accidents can also occur at traffic intersections in the Downtown Phoenix area. These intersection collisions are especially common when a driver is overzealous or fails to slow down in time to avoid impacting another vehicle.

The problem of rear-end motor vehicle crashes doesn’t only apply to the Phoenix area. In fact, 29 percent of car crashes that occur nationwide are rear-end collisions, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

One of the most common causes of rear-end car accidents in Phoenix is driver negligence and failure to pay attention to the road. In fact, in almost all instances, the rear driver is at fault for a rear-end accident, regardless of how it occurs.

Rear-end collisions can involve one impact, or they may involve several impacts in a chain-reaction-type collision. In any case, the collision—or series of collisions—can lead to numerous injuries that may leave you incapacitated for a long time.

If you have suffered one or more injuries in a rear-end car accident, you need a knowledgeable attorney on your side at all times advocating for your interests. Insurance companies will not do you any favors, and you need a skilled lawyer negotiating for you and pursuing the compensation you deserve. If the at-fault driver’s insurance company refuses to offer you full and fair compensation for your injuries, a Phoenix rear-end collision attorney near you can file a lawsuit in the state court system and pursue a favorable result on your behalf.

How Do Phoenix Rear-end Collisions Occur?

Rear-end car collisions that occur in the greater Phoenix area typically happen because of driver recklessness, carelessness, and negligence. In fact, the law assumes that in a rear-impact collision, the rear driver is at fault. Some of the most common causes of rear-end car accidents that happen in and around Phoenix include the following:

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving occurs when a motor vehicle operator fails to give sufficient care and attention to the road. When drivers use their vehicles while making phone calls, sending text messages, or responding to emails, they place everyone else on the road at risk. Even when a driver turns his or her attention away from the road for a second or two, that can be enough time for a rear-end accident to happen. Other distractions in the vehicle can include roughhousing with passengers, loud music in the car, or small children who may be arguing in the back seat.

Negligent Driving

Phoenix drivers must operate their vehicles reasonably at all times and drive per all applicable traffic laws and regulations. When drivers speed, fail to yield the right-of-way at the appropriate times, and disobey traffic signs and signals, they can bring about serious accidents—including rear-end accidents. This is especially true on Phoenix highways and at Downtown Phoenix intersections, where there tends to be a lot of cars around.

Intoxicated Motor Vehicle Operation

When a Phoenix driver has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher, the driver is per se intoxicated. However, alcohol may impair a driver with a lower BAC. Alcohol can slow down central nervous system (CNS) functioning, delay a driver’s reaction time, and impair a driver’s senses—so much so that the driver might not be physically capable of stopping in time to avoid a collision. When a driver chooses to get behind the wheel of a car while intoxicated or impaired, the driver significantly increases the chances that he or she will cause an accident, such as a rear-end collision.

If you have been in a rear-end collision that occurred under one of these circumstances, a Phoenix car accident lawyer can assist. An attorney can investigate the cause and circumstances behind your accident and assist you with filing a claim for monetary compensation.

Injuries Suffered in a Rear-end Car Collision

Phoenix rear-end car collisions often result in serious and debilitating personal injuries and other damages. When the front end of one vehicle collides with the rear of another vehicle, the accident victim’s head and neck can move forward and backward in a very abrupt manner, bringing about whiplash or soft-tissue injuries.
Also, the force of the impact might cause a part of the accident victim’s body to strike something in the vehicle, such as the window (driver or passenger’s side), door, steering wheel, headrest, console, or dashboard, depending upon where the person is sitting in the vehicle. Since the force of the impact is coming from behind, many injuries that accident victims suffer in rear-end collisions involve the head, neck, back, and shoulders.

Some of those injuries include:

  • Traumatic head and brain injuries (including headaches and concussions)
  • Broken bones and fractures
  • Soft tissue injuries (including strains and sprains to various muscles or muscle groups)
  • Cuts, scrapes, bruises, and abrasions (from striking something in the vehicle or because of airbag deployment)
  • Internal bleeding and other internal injuries
  • Back and spinal cord injuries (especially to the upper-back area)

Victims of these types of injuries will often need to undergo significant medical treatment at a great financial cost. For example, after a rear-end collision, the accident victim might need to visit an urgent care center, hospital emergency room, or primary care doctor for initial medical treatment and testing (e.g., MRI’s and x-rays of the affected body parts). The accident victim might then need to follow up with a specialist for treatment (such as an orthopedic doctor or chiropractor), undergo a medical procedure (such as surgery), receive one or more injections to affected body areas, and participate in physical therapy.

Given the significant costs associated with all of this treatment, medical bills can pile up very quickly. If you have suffered an injury in a car accident that was someone else’s fault, get a Phoenix rear-end collision lawyer on your side as soon as possible. An attorney can file the necessary claim to get the process started and promptly and efficiently pursue the compensation you need for the injuries you suffered in your accident.

Pursuing Compensation for Injuries Suffered in a Rear-end Accident

When pursuing monetary compensation for injuries suffered in a rear-end car collision, the accident victim has the burden of proof. The at-fault driver—and the driver’s insurance company—do not need to prove anything in the case. Rather, they will attempt to “poke holes” in the accident victim’s case and try to show that the accident victim was not all that seriously injured.

To successfully recover monetary compensation in a rear-end car accident claim, the accident victim must prove the legal elements of his or her personal injury case. First, the accident victim must demonstrate that the at-fault driver breached his or her duty to drive reasonably and carefully under the circumstances. Likewise, the accident victim must show that he or she suffered at least one injury in the collision—and that the injury or injuries resulted from the collision.

In some rear-end car collision cases, that at-fault driver’s insurance company might go ahead and stipulate (or agree) to fault for the accident. However, in that instance, the accident victim will still need to demonstrate that he or she was injured—and that the injury or injuries happened because of the accident.

The first step towards pursuing and recovering monetary compensation for injuries suffered in a rear-end collision is to file a claim with the at-fault driver’s motor vehicle insurance company. When you or your attorney file this claim, this will force the insurance company to look at the matter and determine whether or not to accept liability for the accident.

When making this decision, the insurance company adjuster whom the insurance company assigns to your case will typically review your medical records and bills, photographs of the accident scene, photographs of your injuries, any lost wage documentation, any reports the police filed, witness statements, and a victim impact statement.

If the insurance company accepts liability for the accident, the adjuster might make an initial monetary offer to try and resolve the case. However, in most instances, these offers need to be negotiated because they are extremely low. In other words, an insurance company’s first offer will not typically compensate you fully and fairly for the injuries you endured. A Phoenix rear-end car collision attorney can negotiate on your behalf and try to convince the adjuster to increase his or her initial offer. Ultimately, you will have the final say on whether to accept a pending settlement offer or litigate the case.

If the insurance company refuses to fully and fairly compensate you for your rear-end collision injuries, you can decide to litigate your case in the court system. This means that your attorney will file a complaint against the at-fault driver (and indirectly against his/her insurance company) in the state court system. Although the case can still settle at some point along the way, the case will move towards trial or alternative dispute resolution.

If the rear-end collision case ultimately goes to trial, a jury will decide what, if any, damages you are entitled to receive for your injuries. Alternative dispute resolution mechanisms, like mediation and arbitration, might also be available depending upon the facts and circumstances of your case. During mediation, a court-appointed mediator or a mediator selected by the parties will work to try and help facilitate a reasonable settlement. If the case goes to arbitration, a neutral, third-party arbitrator will evaluate the case and decide what, if any, damages to award the accident victim.

Types of Damages You Can Recover in Your Rear-end Collision Case

Assuming that you can satisfy all of the other legal elements of your rear-end car accident claim, you might be eligible to pursue various forms of compensation and damages for your injuries. The amounts and types of compensation for which you may be eligible will depend upon how seriously you were injured, the types of injuries you sustained in the collision, and whether or not any of those injuries are permanent.

A person suffers a permanent injury in an accident when a healthcare provider determines that the accident victim will suffer from the injury or condition for the remainder of his or her life to a reasonable degree of medical certainty.

Potential monetary compensation that Phoenix rear-end car collision victims can recover includes damages for medical expenses, lost wages, and out-of-pocket costs. Car accident victims may also pursue compensation for inconvenience, pain and suffering, loss of life enjoyment, loss of the ability to use a body part, and loss of family support or spousal companionship. These latter damages are known as non-economic damages.

An experienced Phoenix rear-end collision attorney will explain your eligibility for these different types of damages and can pursue the compensation you need.

Call a Knowledgeable Phoenix Car Collision Lawyer About Your Legal Matter Today

Phoenix Auto Injury Lawyer Dave Abels
Dave Abels, Phoenix Car Accident Lawyer

If you have suffered an injury in a rear-end collision that occurred in or around Phoenix, you should act right away. Having the right personal injury lawyer by your side can make all the difference when it comes to recovering both fair and full compensation for your injuries.

A knowledgeable Phoenix car accident attorney can forcefully negotiate with the at-fault driver’s insurance company on your behalf. If a favorable settlement offer is not forthcoming, your lawyer can negotiate the case to a favorable conclusion in the court system—or through alternative dispute resolution.

Phoenix Office
714 E Rose Ln
#200
Phoenix, AZ 85014

Toll Free: (855) 749-5299
Local: (602) 819-5191
Fax: (602) 819-4841

 

A Reckless Driver Hit Me in Phoenix, Now What?

Reckless driving in and around Phoenix, Arizona, means unreasonably operating a motor vehicle. When drivers operate their vehicles carelessly, they increase the chances of a serious accident with another motor vehicle or with a pedestrian. In fact, according to recent statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), reckless driving is one of the most common causes of serious traffic accidents that occur nationwide.

Reckless driving can occur on any roadway, but accidents caused by reckless drivers are especially common on busy highways, including I-40, I-410, I-510, and I-710, which are all located in the Phoenix area. This is because these interstate highways are extremely busy, and the more vehicles there are on a roadway, the greater your chances of being in a reckless driving collision.

If you or someone you care about has suffered an injury in an accident that occurred because of a reckless driver, you have legal options that are available to you. As soon as possible after your accident, you should seek medical care and treatment for your injuries. You should also speak with a knowledgeable Phoenix reckless driving attorney in your area as soon as possible.

A knowledgeable attorney will handle all of the legal aspects of your case while you focus your energies on recovering from your injuries and getting all of the medical treatment you need. A lawyer can also begin gathering all of your medical treatment records and other documentation.

Finally, once you have completed your medical treatment, your lawyer can help you pursue a favorable monetary settlement for the injuries you suffered in your reckless driving accident. If the reckless driver’s insurance company refuses to compensate you fairly for your injuries, your lawyer can then file a lawsuit and litigate the case in court.

What Is Reckless Driving?

Reckless driving occurs when a motor vehicle operator fails to operate his or her vehicle in a prudent, safe, and careful manner. Reckless driving can occur on a highway or other roadway and in a parking lot, parking garage, or another area where a driver operates his or her vehicle.

In some cases, the driver might be failing to give sufficient attention to the road while he or she is driving. At other times, reckless driving may involve disobeying a traffic law or regulation on the books, resulting in an accident. Some of the more common types of reckless driving that occur on Phoenix highways, roadways, parking lots, and parking garages include the following:

Disobeying the Rules of the Road

The purpose of having traffic laws on the books, including speed limits and right-of-way laws, is to keep motor vehicle drivers and their passengers safe. However, when motor vehicle drivers violate these road rules, they often increase the chances that they will cause a severe accident.

Violating the laws of the road includes:

  • Speeding.
  • Weaving in and out of traffic.
  • Failing to use a turn signal.
  • Failing to yield the right-of-way when it’s appropriate to do so.
  • Running a red light or stop sign.
  • Failing to use side-view and rearview mirrors (especially when backing out of a parking space in a parking garage or parking lot).
  • Tailgating other drivers.

All of these actions and inactions are road rule violations and constitute reckless driving.

Distracted Driving

A motor vehicle operator engages in distracted driving when he or she fails to give sufficient attention to the road when operating a vehicle. For example, the driver might make a phone call without using an approved hands-free Bluetooth device or using another electronic device like a tablet. The driver might also be listening to loud music in the car, roughhousing with other motor vehicle occupants, or disciplining a young child in the back seat of the car. Even when a driver diverts his or her attention away from the roadway for a second or two, that amounts to reckless driving—and a serious collision can happen as a result.

In addition to these common types of reckless driving, drunk or intoxicated driving can also result in a serious accident. The law considers motor vehicle operators who operate their vehicles with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher to be intoxicated per se.

However, even drivers with a lower BAC can be impaired. As a result, their reaction time might be slower, their vision might become blurry, or they can otherwise operate their vehicles recklessly or carelessly. All of these can lead to a serious accident in which one or more people suffer injuries.

If you have suffered an injury in an auto accident that resulted from reckless or careless driving, a knowledgeable Phoenix reckless driving attorney can assist. An experienced attorney can meet with you to discuss how the accident happened and exactly what occurred. Your lawyer can then file a claim or lawsuit on your behalf, seeking the monetary compensation that you need for your injuries.

Types of Accidents That Can Happen Due to Reckless Driving

When motor drivers operate their vehicles recklessly, many types of accidents can occur. One common type of accident that might result from reckless driving is a rear-end collision. These accidents occur when the front of one vehicle collides with the rear of another vehicle. Rear-end crashes typically happen when a driver is speeding or driving too fast for the traffic conditions and cannot stop in time to avoid colliding with another vehicle.

They also sometimes occur when a driver does not pay attention to the road.

Other accidents that result from reckless driving include T-bone accidents and head-on collisions. T-bone accidents, common at the many traffic intersections in Downtown Phoenix, occur when the front of one vehicle collides directly with the side of another vehicle. These accidents often occur when a driver is trying to beat a yellow or red traffic light to get through an intersection quickly.

Finally, a head-on collision—common on dual-lane highways or roadways—occurs when the front of one vehicle strikes another vehicle. These accidents often happen when a driver is distracted and looks away from the road for a short period. Consequently, the driver may drift over into the other travel lane (such as where traffic is traveling in the opposite direction), causing a serious and sometimes fatal accident.

If you have been in one of these types of accidents that resulted from reckless driving, a knowledgeable reckless driving attorney in Phoenix can assist. Your attorney can investigate how your accident happened, and if necessary, retain an accident reconstructionist or other expert to testify in your car accident case. Your lawyer can then explain your legal options for moving forward and pursuing monetary compensation for your injuries.

Common Injuries the Can Result From Reckless Driving Accidents

Whenever a motor vehicle driver operates his or her vehicle in an improper, reckless, or careless manner, the chances are good that a serious accident will result. These types of accidents, in turn, can lead to equally serious injuries. When a reckless driver injures another person, the accident victim might need to seek various types of medical treatment. For example, he or she may need to follow up at a hospital emergency room or urgent care center for examinations, tests, and X-rays or MRI scans.

Following the emergency room or urgent care visit, the accident victim may need to seek treatment with a family doctor or a specialist for his or her injuries. Depending upon the seriousness of the injury or injuries suffered in the reckless driving accident, the accident victim might need to undergo a medical procedure, such as surgery, to correct the problem. Finally, accident victims often need to attend physical and/or occupational therapy sessions to get themselves back to normal.

Some of the most common injuries that victims of reckless driving accidents sustain include whiplash, traumatic head or brain injuries,soft tissue contusions, and spinal cord injuries. If you have suffered one or more of these injuries in an accident that occurred because of reckless driving, you need a lawyer who is ready to represent you from the beginning to the end of your case.

A knowledgeable Phoenix car accident attorney will make it a priority to pursue a claim or lawsuit seeking the monetary benefits and compensation that you need. Your lawyer can do this by pursuing a favorable settlement on your behalf, and if necessary, filing a lawsuit and litigating the case in the Arizona state court system.

What Do I Need to Prove in a Phoenix Reckless Driving Accident Case?

To recover monetary compensation for the injuries you suffered in your reckless driving accident, you must satisfy the legal burden of proof. In other words, the accident victim is responsible for proving each element of the claim by a preponderance of the evidence (in other words, proving that it is more likely to be true than not true).

In terms of legal elements that you must prove in a motor vehicle accident case, the accident victim must first show that the other driver deviated from the standard of care by operating his or her vehicle unreasonably and recklessly under the circumstances. In other words, the driver must have violated a rule of the road, engaged in distracted driving, or done something else that deviated from the reasonableness standard of care.

In addition, the accident victim must demonstrate that the car accident occurred because the driver operated his or her vehicle recklessly. Finally, the accident victim must show that he or she suffered at least one injury in the accident and that the injury or injuries resulted from the accident.

To be successful and recover monetary compensation and damages in a car accident case, the accident victim must successfully satisfy all of these legal elements. A knowledgeable Phoenix car accident attorney near you can assist you with proving all of the legal elements of your case and fight to recover monetary compensation for the injuries you suffered.

Recoverable Damages in Reckless Driving Accident Cases

Suppose you can meet your legal burden of proof as an accident victim. In that case, you might be eligible to recover monetary compensation for the injuries you suffered in the form of damages. Not all personal injury accident cases are the same. Some accident victims suffer more serious injuries than others, and some accidents themselves are more serious than others.

The amount of compensation that you will be eligible to recover depends upon the exact injuries you sustained in your accident, the cost of your medical treatment, and whether or not you suffered a permanent injury in the accident.

Car accident victims commonly receive compensation for medical expenses, lost earnings, loss of earning capacity, pain and suffering, permanency, inconvenience, mental distress, loss of the ability to use a body part, and loss of enjoyment of life.

A knowledgeable Phoenix reckless driving lawyer will explain your eligibility for all of these types of damages and will pursue the compensation you deserve from the reckless driver’s insurance company. If the insurance company does not offer you fair and full compensation, your attorney can litigate the case in the court system by filing a lawsuit on your behalf.

Talk with a Knowledgeable Phoenix Reckless Driving Accident Lawyer Today

Phoenix Auto Injury Lawyer Dave Abels
Dave Abels, Phoenix Car Accident Lawyer

If you suffered an injury in a Phoenix car accident caused by a reckless driver, you should seek out legal assistance as fast as possible.

Your lawyer can immediately begin investigating your case and preparing it for settlement or litigation in the courts.

Reckless driving makes the city’s streets more dangerous for everyone, and such drivers should be fully accountable for the harm and losses they cause. Never hesitate to seek the legal help you need following a reckless driving crash.

Phoenix Office
714 E Rose Ln
#200
Phoenix, AZ 85014

Toll Free: (855) 749-5299
Local: (602) 819-5191
Fax: (602) 819-4841

 

Phoenix Car Accident Scenarios, Who’s at Fault?

Car accidents can happen at different places in the Valley metro area. In each place, the nature of the accident can be different. For example, you would not have stop signs or intersection accidents on the highway. You would be more likely to see accidents associated with speeding, following too closely, and illegal lane changes on a highway.

The car that makes the initial contact is not always the one that is responsible for the crash. Blame is only assigned after an investigation establishes the cause of the accident. This is why you need to contact a lawyer right after the crash to protect your legal interests.

Here are some areas where crashes occur in Phoenix and who may be to blame for them.

Urban Roads

Left-Hand Turn Crashes – Phoenix has its share of busy and dangerous intersections.

Some of the most treacherous intersections in Phoenix include:

  • 27th Avenue and Camelback Road
  • 67th Avenue and Indian School Road
  • 75th Avenue and Indian School Road
  • 67th Avenue and McDowell Road
  • 51st Avenue and McDowell Road

Either driver can be responsible for a left-hand turn accident. The driver who is making the turn must wait until the path is clear to make their turn. If they are trying to beat the light and get in the way of a car that is already in traffic, they will be to blame. On the other hand, if the driver making the turn has the right of way because of the traffic light, the car that hit them bears responsibility.

Running Red Lights – According to the American Automobile Association, Arizona has the highest rate of red light running-related accidents in the country. Over ten years, there were over 350 drivers in the state killed in accidents when drivers ran a red light. Half the time, the fatality occurs in the car that they hit. In accidents when drivers run a red light, liability for the crash is usually very clear. It is the driver who broke the traffic law and caused the crash.

Downtown Phoenix

Running Stop Signs – not every intersection in Downtown Phoenix has a traffic signal. Many intersections have stop signs instead. Four-way stop signs are particularly dangerous because the right of way is often unclear. However, some drivers do not even bother to try to figure that out, failing to stop at a stop sign. Statistics show that approximately 70 percent of drivers will consciously run stop signs when no other cars are around. This gets them in the habit of not stopping, even when there are other cars. When a driver runs a stop sign, they will be the one at fault for the car accident.

Nonetheless, you will need evidence to show which driver had the right of way if there was a two or four-way stop sign.

  • Distracted Driving – things like texting while driving are a danger everywhere, but they tend to cause even more accidents when there are other drivers in the immediate vicinity. Drivers who are looking down at their phones will miss things like stop signs and traffic lights. They will also not see other motorists stopped in front of them and can be involved in rear-end accidents. Usually, distracted driving manifests itself in the driver’s careless action. Even if you cannot prove that they were looking at their phone, they will have done something negligent to cause the accident.
  • T-bone crashes – these are common crashes that often occur when drivers run traffic signals or stop signs. This often happens in more congested urban areas like Downtown Phoenix, where there are plenty of traffic signals and stop signs. One car will hit the other vehicle on the side. If the accident happens on the driver’s side, the motorist may be seriously injured. Blame for this accident depends on who had the right of way because t-bone accidents do not happen unless one driver proceeds when they should not. It is not automatically the car that hits the other that is to blame for the crash. It is the driver who did not have the right of way who is responsible.
  • Rideshare Vehicles – while many portray rideshare drivers as the root of all dangers on Phoenix roads, many of them rigorously follow road safety rules. Responsibility for these accidents is determined the same as it is in any car accident. One common scenario is when the rideshare driver reenters traffic without signaling or when another driver has already established themselves in traffic. Illegal turns are common causes of these types of accidents, as rideshare drivers commonly pull over to pick up or drop off passengers. The Uber driver will be to blame for the accident if they failed to follow traffic laws. However, the other driver could be responsible if they were speeding or failed to respect the rideshare driver’s right of way.

Urban Freeways

Phoenix has one of the highest fatality rates on urban freeways in the entire country. It is more than 60 percent higher than the national average.

Surprisingly, many serious accidents happen on Phoenix highways outside of rush hours. I-17 is known as one of the most deadly roads in the United States.

Drunk driving – this is a common problem on Phoenix highways, especially on nights and weekends. Drunk drivers often do not see highway signs, and they cannot process traffic instructions. In some extreme cases, they may even travel the wrong way on the highway, causing head-on collisions. There are even signs on I-17 that warn drivers about wrong-way driving, in part because of the prevalence of drunk drivers on that road.

Reckless Driving – Phoenix does not have as much highway traffic as other major metropolitan areas. In part, this is because Phoenix is a newer city with wider urban highways. However, the many lanes often give motorists an incentive for reckless driving since they dangerously weave in and out of traffic. Drivers can sideswipe other cars or run them off the road when they enter the motorist’s space.

Rear-End Crashes on Highways – some distracted or speeding drivers do not allow for a safe following distance from the car in front of them. When that car slows down, they will hit the vehicle from the rear. This can cause serious head and neck injuries. When there is a rear-end car crash, there is a presumption that the tailing car is to blame for the accident unless there is strong evidence to the contrary.

Commercial Vehicle Accidents – truck drivers are not automatically to blame for all accidents in which they are involved. However, the fact that the truck is so large and difficult for the driver to control the vehicle means that the truck driver may be responsible for the accident more often than the other driver.

Truck drivers can cause an accident by:

  • Misjudging a corner on a turn
  • Changing lanes and hitting a car in their blindspot
  • Not allowing enough room to bring the truck to a stop (fully loaded 18-wheelers can take hundreds of feet to stop)
  • Speeding to try to make up time or maximize their allowable shift

Determining the cause of truck accidents often takes an extensive amount of investigation. For this reason, it’s in your best interest to retain a lawyer as soon as you can after a crash.

Speeding – Except for the height of rush hour, cars can usually move freely on Phoenix highways. Speeding causes rear-end crashes and incidents where drivers lose control of their cars. Speeding does not always mean traveling far more than the speed limit. It means that the driver was going too fast for the conditions. This is important because accidents can happen in rare Phoenix rainstorms because they tend to be short and intense.

Law enforcement may issue a ticket after the fact when they come to issue a police report. If a driver is guilty of speeding, or if witness testimony establishes that they were traveling unreasonably fast, they will be liable for the crash because that is acting unreasonably under the circumstances.

Parking Lots

Backing Out Accidents – Drivers must pay close attention when they are backing out of a parking space. Other drivers passing by (or pedestrians) have the right of way when they are already in traffic. The same goes when a driver is pulling out of a parking space in the city. They must signal and wait until it is safe to pull into traffic. The driver who is backing out or exiting a parking space will be responsible when they pull into the path of an oncoming car. The result may be different when two drivers back up at the same time and hit each other. Then, both may be equally to blame for the accident.

Knowing Whom to Blame for the Accident

Of course, we presented the above scenarios as established facts in terms of liability. This is not always the case with every car accident. Many crashes will require extensive investigation after the fact to discover what happened. Even though you have your story, the other driver may be telling a different tale. It is up to you to come up with the evidence that you need to prove your side of the story.

Doing so is not always easy for a car accident victim who is already dealing with serious injuries. They do not have the time or ability to investigate their car crash, especially when they are physically hurt. Further, the evidence they need to establish liability may be lost or destroyed. For this reason, you need to call a lawyer right after your accident. They will get right to work, and you can leave the details to them. Your lawyer can help establish who was at fault for the accident and present your case to the insurance company.

Attorneys can use a legal process known as discovery to compel the production of evidence in preparation for a case.

Some examples of evidence your lawyer may seek while investigating your case include:

  • Surveillance footage that may have captured the accident
  • Onboard vehicle computer data
  • The other driver’s medical records
  • Cell phone records

In addition to collecting evidence that may help prove your case, your lawyer may also seek information from the other party through the use of interrogatories or depositions. Furthermore, your lawyer may seek the opinions of experts such as accident reconstructionists. The more evidence you have, the stronger your case – and the more likely it is that you will obtain a fair settlement from the other driver’s insurance company.

Why You Need a Lawyer After a Phoenix Car Accident

The fact that so much is at stake is why you should always see a lawyer after a Phoenix car accident, no matter what happened. Your lawyer could investigate the accident and help you pursue a claim if the other driver was even partially to blame. You should never make any assumptions about the cause of an accident until you have had a lawyer investigate. Do not be quick to take the blame for a crash. In fact, never take responsibility at all because that can hurt you during the claims process.

Furthermore, you should retain a lawyer after an accident even if the other driver’s insurance company accepts liability. An attorney can ensure that you get the compensation you deserve.

There are many reasons to hire an attorney after your car accident. The primary one is that you need someone to look after your interests when others are out to harm them to put a few extra coins in their pocket. You need a legal team with a long track record of fighting for their clients to the fullest extent possible under the law.

The insurance company that you deal with handles claims just like yours every day and will do everything it can to settle your case for less than you deserve.

Phoenix Car Driver Fatigue

Fatigued driving is a problem in Phoenix and across the country. Nationally, there are nearly 100,000 crashes each year where fatigued driving is a factor. This takes between 700 to 800 lives each year. In Arizona, there are an average of roughly 1,000 fatigued driving accidents each year, but in all likelihood, not all fatigue-related crashes get reported. These accidents tend to be serious, given the absolute lack of control that the other driver had over their car and the fact that you were not expecting the second car to act that unpredictably.

Here are some of the reasons why fatigued driving is a particular problem in Phoenix.

Long Isolated Desert Roads

The area outside Phoenix has long stretches of road that do help drivers stay awake. It is often difficult to focus in the desert when there are few other cars in the area. If a driver is already tired, poorly lit roads with long straightaway stretches will make the problem even worse. There are few stimuli in the desert to help keep a driver awake. While drivers should pull off the road to rest, there are not many opportunities to do so on a desert road.

In general, darker areas will mean that it is easier for an already tired driver to fall asleep. Their reflexes may dull when there is less on the road to get their attention. The further one gets outside of Phoenix, the more the road is conducive to driver fatigue. This is especially true as one travels towards the more sparsely populated areas between Phoenix and Tucson.

The Hot Phoenix Weather

In addition, the hot weather in Phoenix can wear drivers down, even when they have gotten enough sleep. The problem can be even worse when drivers do not have enough rest, and it can make fatigued driving risks worse.

In fact, one study showed that the rate of car accidents goes up by three percent on extremely hot days, and we have plenty of those in Phoenix. The risk of a driver’s performance error that can cause an accident increases by seven percent on days that are scorchers. For every degree Celsius that the temperature increases, the risk of a crash caused by driver mistake increased by 1.1 percent. Bad weather causing car accidents is not just limited to rain and snow.

Hot days can take a lot out of a driver. They find it harder to focus when their body is tired. Fatigue is more likely to get to a driver when they are hot and thirsty. They can drift out of their lanes due to heat-induced fatigue and fail to react in enough time to avoid an accident.

Longer Drives Because of the Expansive Environs of Phoenix

The Phoenix area is one of the more spread out metropolitan areas in the entire country. In the city itself, there are 4,850 miles of roadway, and this doesn’t even account for the massive surrounding areas. It can take well over an hour to travel from one end of the city to the other. Driving longer distances will lead to more motorist fatigue. When car journeys take an hour instead of ten minutes, drivers are more likely to get tired.

Phoenix motorists will commute an average of 23 miles each day for work. When they live far outside the city, they may drive long distances to and from the area for sporting and cultural events. This means that they have more opportunities to drive more later at night. The spread-out nature of the city means that people will be on the more at all hours of the night.

Rideshare Drivers

Rideshare companies do big business in Phoenix. While the rideshare companies do not release their number of annual riders in the Valley area, they do brag about the economic impact that they have in Phoenix. In a recent year, Lyft claimed that it had $59 million worth of economic impact on the Phoenix area. Uber said that on New Year’s Eve one year (before rideshare numbers even took off), there were 625 people in Uber cars at the stroke of midnight.

The large majority of Uber and Lyft rides do not happen during the day. Instead, people use these companies to get around at night, after they have been drinking or coming from a sporting event. This means that many rideshare drivers work the night shift. These can be people who worked a full day and are now trying to earn a second income at night. They are often tired at night on the road, not having gotten sleep beforehand during the day. This means that drivers are “deadheading” at night, driving around looking for rides when they are fatigued.

Difficult Mass Transit

The mass transit network in Phoenix is newer and less extensive than it is in other large cities. Unlike New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles, people do not get onto a Valley Light Rail train or bus at night to get where they are going. If they are not calling an Uber, they are getting in their own car. People who want to stay on the road have fewer options, and Phoenix does not have a mass transit culture like other large cities. The light rail system does not even run past 11 p.m., forcing drivers onto the road at the time when they may be the most tired.

Heavy Truck Traffic

Even though there are federal rules that forbid drivers from driving too many hours, it does little to prevent fatigued truck driving. To cover the most ground possible, drivers will travel late at night, when there is the least traffic on the road. This is when they will be the most tired, as there are no assurances that they took advantage of off time to sleep.

Phoenix has its share of truck traffic due to its location as a hub in the Southwest. Further, many drivers are coming through the city on their way to the rest of the country from the ports in Southern California. The higher truck traffic means that there are more drivers on Phoenix highways late at night, increasing the chance that a fatigued truck driver can cause an accident.

Why Fatigued Driving Is So Dangerous

Fatigued driving is every bit as dangerous as drunk driving. Many police officers may pull over a fatigued driver for suspicion of drunk driving because they may be driving a similar way. They have difficulty staying in their lane, and they may be drifting all over the roadway.

After officers make the traffic stop and perhaps administer a Breathalyzer test, they realize that the driver is not drunk but is tired. Even still, an officer can ticket a fatigued driver for reckless driving. However, this only works when an officer sees the conduct and stops the driver. Many tired motorists cause accidents before a police officer can spot them.

The statistics on the actual effects of fatigued driving are alarming. The longer drivers go without sleep, the worse they perform behind the wheel. At 20 hours without sleep, it is the same ad driving with a .08 blood alcohol content. This is the legal limit for drunk driving in Arizona. When they hit 24 hours without sleeping, it increases to the equivalent of a .10 BAC. This is the same thing as being legally drunk.

Mistakes That Fatigued Drivers Make

Fatigued drivers are likely to:

  • Nod off for brief periods (microsleep)
  • Forget to do something simple, such as signal when turning
  • Drive the wrong way down a one-way street because they cannot see a sign
  • Be less alert behind the wheel
  • Speed to make it home in time before falling asleep
  • Drive aggressively because they cannot control their emotions
  • Make poor decisions because being tired affects their judgment

All of these increase the accident risk and endangers drivers around them. As much as we recommend that drivers properly rest before they get behind the wheel, there will always be people who think that they can make it, and falling asleep will not happen to them. These are the people who end up becoming a statistic. The problem is that well-rested drivers around them also become a statistic, simply by being in the wrong place at the wrong time around the wrong driver.

Brief Microsleep Can Prove Fatal

Even nodding off behind the wheel for a brief few seconds is incredibly dangerous. When you are traveling on the highway, all it takes is a few seconds for your car to travel the length of a football field. By the time that you come back to full consciousness, you may miss the car stopped in front of you or a curve in the road. Even a brief period of nodding off is enough to cause a severe accident, especially when you are going at a high speed. All it takes is one wrong move or one missed stimuli to cause a major accident.

Of course, fatigued drivers are usually also negligent drivers. Anytime that they make a mistake, they are likely to do something that would be unreasonable under the circumstances. It does not matter whether anyone discovers after the fact that they did not have enough sleep. The mere fact that they did something like drift out of a lane or rear-end another driver is enough for a negligence verdict. The ultimate proof of their fatigue is in their actions. If they veer off into your lane and run you off the road, the cause of the accident does not necessarily matter. They will be found negligent.

Fatigued Driving Crashes with Trucks

If a truck driver caused the accident because of fatigue, the stakes of your case may increase. Federal rules prevent them from driving too much at one time, and they impose mandatory rest periods. Fatigued truck drivers may have violated the rules. Drivers must keep mandatory logs of their driving time, but companies or drivers can falsify them.

One of the first things that a truck accident attorney will ask for is the driving logs and the truck’s black box. If the driver has deliberately violated a federal rule, and there is a pattern of it, you may even have a case for punitive damages, although these are very rare.

In the meantime, the trucking company would be responsible for their driver’s actions. Their insurance policy would need to cover the damages. If their insurance policy was not large enough to cover your injuries, you may go after the trucking company’s assets. This is something that the trucking company will want to avoid at all costs because it can put them out of business.

Why You Need a Lawyer in a Phoenix Fatigued Driving Case

Fatigued driving crashes tend to be more severe than the average crash because the driver has likely lost control of their vehicle or hit another car at a high speed. This usually means that you are dealing with higher numbers in a claim or lawsuit because the injuries are more serious. Accordingly, you need a lawyer to help make sure that you recover what you legally deserve, as opposed to being shortchanged by the insurance company.

If you were in an accident with a fatigued driver, your issues will more likely revolve around obtaining the right amount of damages as opposed to proving liability because the other driver’s negligence will be more clear-cut. Being offered a settlement does not necessarily equal a win for you because it can be for pennies on the dollar.

Getting enough money may take some work through negotiations with the insurance company. They likely recognize that they have a large check to write, especially when the accident was serious. This is why you need a lawyer to protect your legal rights. This is what experienced Phoenix car accident attorneys do every day.

Phoenix Causes of Car Accidents

If you have suffered injuries in a car accident, finding out the cause is crucial to your efforts to obtain financial compensation. Phoenix has some of its unique factors that add up to hazards for drivers. Some of them involve the nature of the roads in the area, while others result from the fact that drivers in the area can be impatient and angry. Here are some of the common reasons why car accidents happen in Phoenix.

Weather Conditions

You may be wondering how a city without snow or much rain can pose difficulty for drivers because of its weather. Heat itself does not cause accidents, but it does make drivers worse. When they are fatigued from extreme heat, motorists will not have the same skills and reflexes as they would in more temperate conditions.

If Phoenix has a lot of anything, it is extremely hot days. One study showed a 3 percent increase in car accidents on days that are scorchers, which are basically six months out of the year in Phoenix. Drivers are seven percent more likely to make an error that can cause a car accident on extremely hot days. Sweltering weather can affect their concentration.

In addition, extreme heat can negatively impact your car’s performance, meaning that it may not be there for you when you need to take a sudden action to avoid an accident. The hot days can cause tire blowouts, and that may cause drivers to lose control of their vehicles. Finally, the desert heat can cause some drivers to get aggravated and lose their tempers, leading to road rage incidents that we describe below.

Finally, while Phoenix does not get much rain, the precipitation that it does have can make things worse in a hurry for drivers. Roads are subject to flooding when sudden rainstorms occur.

Aggressive and Rageful Drivers

Phoenix, and Arizona drivers in general, have a problem controlling their emotions. Road rage incidents are dramatically on the rise in the state and the Valley area. While many of these incidents involve drivers committing acts of physical violence against other drivers after things that happen on the road, it does reveal that many Phoenix drivers have short tempers.

This can manifest itself in hyper-aggressive driving that can put everyone at risk. Aggressive driving means tailgating or making other hostile moves as part of a dispute. Not only does this endanger the driver who is the target, but it puts everyone in the surrounding area at risk.

Aggressive drivers who are running on emotion make poor choices. They are not thinking about safety when their sole focus is on settling a score. Even worse, they can lose control of their own car when they perform dangerous moves, and they can collect other cars in an accident.

Phoenix Is One Big Construction Zone

Phoenix has reached the point where its infrastructure is beginning to show its age. While the city is on the newer side, its roads are not in the best shape. Perhaps this is because Phoenix is still a car city, and the combination of tens of thousands of cars and the desert heat can prematurely age roads. Poor road conditions alone are enough to cause accidents.

Now, Phoenix is committed to doing something about the state of its roads. However, fixing roads means that they become construction zones. Work zones, whether they are on the highway or city streets, can challenge drivers.

Construction means slower speeds and narrower lanes. It also means sudden changes in road conditions that pose challenges even for drivers who are paying attention. When motorists do not exercise the appropriate amount of caution, it causes work zone accidents. Now, they can expect even more construction in Phoenix, as the city has announced plans to fix even more roads.

One study even found that Phoenix was tied with Detroit for the worst roads in the county out of 20 large urban areas analyzed.

Urban Highways Can Be Dangerous

Phoenix has hundreds of miles of urban highways. There are interstates, such as I-10 and I-17, that carry tens of thousands of drivers each day. In Phoenix, the problem is not so much heavy traffic. The city has enough highways and roads to carry all of the cars traveling. However, this is a double-edged sword. When the roads are wide and multi-laned, it also encourages bad behavior among drivers. They have more room and the ability to drive dangerously.

The statistics about Phoenix highway fatalities back this up. More than half of highway fatalities in the area occur from Friday to Sunday. This means that drivers are riskier when they have more wide-open roads. In addition, the fact that there are so many lanes on Phoenix highways allows drivers to weave in and out of traffic, and they may do so recklessly.

In fact, some observers rank I-17 as the fourth-deadliest highway in the entire country. From 2011-2015, there were 49 deaths just on the part of the highway within Phoenix city limits. Between Phoenix and Flagstaff, there were 123 deaths in that time. One of the common issues on I-17 is drunk drivers. In addition, the highway has a significant amount of truck traffic and commercial accidents.

According to the Arizona Republic, there was a fatal freeway accident in the Valley area once every five days from 2013-2015. This is 61 percent higher than the national average of highway fatalities. This is part of why Phoenix has one of the highest car accident fatality rates of any big city in the country.

Truck Traffic

Even though Phoenix is not at the center of the country, it is still in a prime position for truck traffic. Because it is located on I-10, trucks will pass through Phoenix on their way to the rest of the country from the ports in Southern California.

Trucks coming to and from the Mexican border may also transit through the Valley area. In addition, there is a massive Walmart distribution facility south of Phoenix that has increased truck traffic in the area. In general, the move towards online shopping means that you will see multiple Amazon and Walmart trucks every time you get on a highway in Phoenix.

The presence of large trucks on Valley area roads makes life more difficult for all other drivers. Trucking has become far more dangerous these days as companies struggle to get enough qualified drivers on the road. Rookie drivers can make errors when trying to handle a vehicle that can weigh 80,000 pounds fully loaded. This far outweighs other vehicles on the roads. As a result, most drivers do not walk away from truck accidents unharmed.

They also press to meet delivery deadlines in the face of federal restrictions on how much drivers can operate their vehicles. Limits on shifts mean that truck drivers may speed to cover as much ground as they can before they need to take a mandatory break.

Uber and Lyft Vehicles

Like any city, the prevalence of rideshare vehicles on the road makes things more dangerous for other Phoenix drivers. Until the pandemic took many of these drivers off the road, the car accident rate in the area was increasing. Uber drivers in Phoenix have the 14th-highest hourly earnings in the country, so it follows that there will be plenty of them on the road.

Rideshare drivers often drive in parts of the Valley with which they are unfamiliar. Further, they are focused on the app and picking up new rides to increase their earnings. They may be driving in circles in a practice known as “deadheading” to stay within the area where ride requests are prevalent. Then, they may race to pick up the ride, so they can maintain their high driver rating. In some ways, the ride-sharing system can incentivize drivers to engage in dangerous practices like distracted driving and speeding.

In general, the sprawling road network in Phoenix increases the chance of lost drivers who are unfamiliar with the terrain and roads. Lost drivers will look to their smartphones for directions, taking one or both of their eyes off the road.

Crowded Intersections

The long multi-lane urban roads heading out to the suburbs present difficulties for drivers who are trying to make a left turn. Some of Phoenix’s urban roads, like Camelback and McDowell, can carry up to 80,000 cars per day. Even with perfectly timed lights and traffic control, these intersections will still be dangerous. Some intersections, such as along McDowell and Camelback Roads, will have an accident every few days as cars try to beat the lights to make their turns. Other drivers are not paying attention, and they will run red lights or not see cars in the intersection. Accidents while cars turn are often extremely dangerous because one car will hit the other head-on or slam into the side of the other vehicle. These kinds of accidents can cause serious injuries for drivers.

Tourists and Part-Year Residents

Many people will flock to Phoenix in the winter and fall for more temperate weather when the thermometer readings are not as high in the Valley. Tourists and snowbirds contribute to car accidents because they are not familiar with local roads.

Like the Uber drivers mentioned above, they struggle to navigate when they are lost, and they may get distracted when they are lost. Their timid driving would lead them to make illegal lane changes when they are trying to get over to make a turn. They may be driving very slowly on highways or can stop without warning in front of you. What’s worse is that many out-of-state drivers travel in rental cars, so it is hard to know when you need to take extra care.

Drunk Driving

Arizona has a higher than average rate of drunk driving fatalities. This is why there are more traffic fatalities on state roads over the weekends. Drunk drivers can drive aggressively or lose control of their cars, impacting other motorists in the area. They can cause horrific collisions by falling asleep at the wheel or driving into head-on traffic. This is exactly why I-17 is one of the country’s most dangerous roads. Local authorities have had to put up signs warning motorists about wrong-way driving.

Alcohol reduces drivers’ natural aversion to risk because it lowers their inhibitions. It also keeps them from being able to process and follow traffic signs and signals.

Distracted Driving

Like everyone else, Phoenix drivers are increasingly more distracted behind the wheel. Their mobile device competes for their attention when they are driving, despite the tough traffic laws that prohibit the use of handheld devices while operating a motor vehicle. Texting and emailing while driving are particularly serious problems.

Looking at your phone often makes crashes far worse because drivers hit objects without any attempts to evade the hazard or slow down. In addition, these drivers miss opportunities to avoid crashes because they lose valuable time to slow down or move their car out of harm’s way.

Reckless Drivers

Phoenix drivers are often in a hurry, even when there is nobody else on the roads. They think that it is worth the risk to themselves and other drivers to get there a few minutes faster. This is why many accidents happen outside of peak travel hours. Speeding drivers are more likely to lose control of their car or fail to stop at a red light or stop sign. They have worse reflexes and less of an ability to avoid a crash.

Reckless driving means that these drivers have little regard for anyone else’s safety. This is not a problem local to Phoenix, but the city does rank 35th out of 183 cities in the U.S. in terms of dangerous roads. This is partly due to the high fatality rate associated with reckless driving.

Different Trucks Pose Different Dangers (Tankers, Cargo, Garbage, Dump)

The Dangers of Different Types of Commercial Trucks

Every day we are surrounded by various kinds of commercial trucks on the road. As consumers, there are countless products we use in our daily lives that may have not noticed were transported by so many different types of commercial trucks. We also rely on trucks to dispose of our trash, to deliver fuel to gas stations, and to stock our grocery stores.

But as a regular car driver, these massive vehicles can pose a serious risk to our safety. Different types of commercial trucks have their own unique sets of potential hazards. Getting into an accident with any one of these large vehicles can be devastating, both physically and financially.

Common Types of Trucks on Illinois Roads

There are hundreds of different types of commercial trucks which can all cause serious accidents. These range from common semi trucks carrying new TVs to dump trucks hauling materials for a new house. The following is a breakdown of the most common types of commercial trucks and the unique hazards they pose.

Semi Trucks and Trailers

Semi truck is the common term used for large trucks with attached cabins that tow enclosed boxed trailers. These trucks transport over 70% of the goods we use in the United States each year.

Semi trucks can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds and be 70 feet long. When compared to an average car that is 3,000 pound and 15 feet, it’s clear that accidents between semi trucks and standard vehicles can be particularly devastating for the car passengers.

A semi truck’s massive size also makes it more difficult to control. At 55 miles per hour, a semi truck driver needs 450 feet to come to a complete stop. That’s 1.5 times the length of a football field. Compare that to a passenger car which needs 120 feet to fully brake at 60 miles per hour.

Because of their size, semi trucks also have large blindspots and a wide turning radius, which is another factor that makes driving near them dangerous.

Flatbed Trailers

Flatbed trucks routinely transport cargo that won’t fit into a typical box trailer. These items can be difficult to secure which can cause cargo to shift or even to fall off the truck.

The unusual shape of a flatbed truck’s cargo can also cause it to be unbalanced which may make it difficult for a driver to maintain control.

If a flatbed is involved in a collision, it’s not uncommon for their cargo to come loose, which can create further hazards for those who are involved in the accident and other drivers on the road.

Wideload Trucks

Wideload trucks have cargo that exceeds the weight and/or dimensions of what is allowed on the road. Illinois requires permits for oversize loads but they are still a common sight on highways or backroads.

Wide load trucks have difficulty turning corners, adjusting to downward and upward slopes, and seeing other vehicles. The heavy cargo also puts additional strain on the truck’s engine, tires, and other parts which may cause the vehicle to become a hazard for those around it.

Box Trucks and Delivery Trucks

Box trucks and delivery trucks are large commercial trucks in which the cargo area is attached to the chassis rather than towed.

Box trucks have a lot of blind spots, are more difficult to stop, and have a much wider turning radius than passenger vehicles.

Box trucks are a common choice for moving companies and rental agencies, like Uhaul. This means they’re often rented and driven by people who don’t have experience handling a larger vehicle which can be a serious hazard for other drivers.

Tankers

Tanker trucks are semi trucks that tow large cylindrical tanks on their trailers. As the name suggests, tankers transport liquids. Tanker trucks require a very specific type of training because of the way that liquid shifts while the vehicle is moving.

These tanks also commonly carry hazardous contents like alcohol, gasoline, or industrial chemicals. These highly-flammable can be extremely dangerous when they are involved in a collision.

Car Transporters

A typical car transporter carries between five and nine cars at a time. If the vehicles being towed aren’t properly secured, they can shift or roll off into traffic unsuspectingly.

The weight of car transporters varies depending on how many vehicles they’re transporting during a certain trip. Drivers have to adjust to the varying weight of these trucks, which is one reason they’re more difficult to control.

Dump Trucks

Dump trucks haul and release loads of heavy materials such as sand, gravel, and concrete. They commonly weigh several tons and can be very heavy when filled with material like rocks.

Standard-sized cars and SUVs are no match for dump trucks in the event of a collision. These trucks are often built like tanks to handle the beating they take on construction sites on a daily basis.

Dump trucks can also pose a hazard when their exposed cargo flies out of the back. It is not uncommon to hear sand or small gravel hitting your vehicle when you are behind a dump truck, but if that material is larger it can cause a serious issue.

Hazmat Trucks

Hazmat trucks transport sensitive materials such as gasses, explosives, and dangerous chemicals. These trucks can obviously cause major issues for everyone involved if the materials are leaked during a collision.

City Busses

The final common type of commercial truck on this list is a city bus. Most people do not think about busses as being dangerous but they can be as much of a hazard as any other large truck. A Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) bus accident happens every 1.5 days. Busses frequently stop and move in and out of traffic which can make them unpredictable to drive around. To make matters worse, bus drivers have significant blindspots that make it difficult to safely re-enter traffic after each stop.

Contact an Experienced Chicago Truck Accident Attorney

If you were involved in an accident with any type of truck, hiring an experienced attorney can make all the difference in getting the proper amount of compensation you need.

Abels & Annes has decades of experience handling truck accident claims and we can help you to get the maximum amount of compensation so you can rebuild your life.

Abels & Annes can help you with your truck accident case by:

  • Investigate your accident and collect important evidence.
  • Handle the paperwork and filing.
  • Explore the multiple different parties that could be responsible.
  • Negotiate with the insurance companies on your behalf.
  • File a lawsuit if necessary.

When you choose our truck accident attorneys you get a law firm with a successful track record in handling truck accident cases, personal attention so you know what is going on, and our reputation with the insurance companies for taking our client’s cases seriously.

If you’ve been injured in a truck accident, having the right attorney can help you recover the compensation you deserve. There’s no fee unless you recover money for your claim. Contact Abels & Annes to set up a free consultation by calling (312) 924-7575 or filling out our online form.

 

10 Most Dangerous Intersections in Chicago for Car Accidents (With Map)

Why are some Chicago intersections more dangerous than others?

Intersections are inherently dangerous for drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians. But not all Chicago intersections are created equally. Some intersections are more dangerous than others. Some don’t get proper maintenance, some intersections are too small for the growing amount of traffic, and others are lacking certain features that keep people safe.

Before we look at the most dangerous intersections in Chicago, let’s examine some factors that make intersections particularly dangerous.

Confusing or Unclear Lanes

Driving lanes that are not clearly marked, are too short, or are oddly arranged is a serious cause of car accidents. Every year, more than 250,000 car accidents happen due to improper lane changing. This can be caused by issues like not enough turning lanes or too few lanes to accommodate the amount of traffic. Too many lanes can also be a problem. The more lanes there are on an intersection, the more opportunities there are for a collision. Drivers have to get across a greater stretch to move to the side of the intersection they need to be in.

Unclear Directions for Making Turns

Unclear directions for making turns can cause even the most careful drivers to get into an accident. Drivers coming from opposite directions could collide while turning into the same lane. Drivers going straight risk running into drivers making left turns. When an intersection is not clear about how turning works, it can cause confusion and more accidents on the road.

Traffic Signals That Aren’t Properly Timed to Handle Heavy Traffic

When traffic signals aren’t properly timed for the amount of traffic, all kinds of issues can arise. Aggressive and impatient drivers may move too far up to anticipate a green light or risk running a red light to prevent a longer wait. When a signal only stays green for a short time, aggressive drivers speed or change lanes to beat the light.

Poor Lighting

Intersections that aren’t properly lit hinder drivers’ ability to see oncoming traffic, pedestrians, and street signs. By the time they’re close enough to see, it’s often too late to brake. This is especially a problem for cyclists and pedestrians who need drivers to clearly see them in order to stay safe.

Street Signs That Are Missing

Street signs that are missing or faded cause a lot of confusion at intersections. A missing sign might cause one driver to not stop where they should. Meanwhile, another driver who takes that route regularly doesn’t expect the other driver to continue forward. Fortunately, you can report missing or damaged signs to the city.

No Crosswalks

For many drivers, the presence of a crosswalk reminds them to slow down to look out for people on foot. They are often less vigilant when there isn’t one. The lack of crosswalks also creates uncertainty about who has the right of way. As Chicago’s population has boomed and more people walk and bike to work, this is increasingly important.

No Bicycle Lanes

When an intersection doesn’t have bicycle lanes, cyclists sometimes have no choice but to share the road with much larger vehicles. What might be a little fender bender between two vehicles is a severe accident between a bicycle and car. Bicycles are also much less visible to drivers; cyclists disappear in blindspots and during turns. New and improved bike lanes have been proven to save lives, especially in urban areas.

Construction Projects

Ongoing construction in an intersection adds another layer of unpredictability. Drivers who’ve taken a familiar route a hundred times can be thrown off by detours. Sudden lane changes or braking doesn’t give surrounding drivers much time to adjust. Additionally, obstacles like debris and construction cones can lead to swerving. Construction zones are always dangerous, but they can be especially so at intersections.

10 Most Dangerous Intersections in the Chicago Area

As a Chicago driver, you probably travel through several of the most dangerous intersections on a regular basis. Knowing which intersections are dangerous can give you a heads-up and hopefully make you more aware at any busy Chicago intersection.

1. Stony Island Avenue at S South Chicago Avenue

The first dangerous intersection on our list is where Stony Island Avenue’s six lanes intersect with S South Chicago Ave and E 79th St. This diagonal intersection is both complicated and busy. In 2010, the intersection was responsible for a record 63 crashes, more than any other in the region. Additionally, the area is further complicated by the rush of traffic heading for the Chicago Skyway.

Stony Island Avenue and S South Chicago Avenue are located between the neighborhoods of South Chicago and South Shore.

2. Western Avenue at Peterson Avenue

With so many busy lanes, old infrastructure, and a lack of sufficient traffic signals, it’s no surprise that the W Peterson Ave & N Western Ave intersection sees about 50 crashes a year.

W Peterson Ave & N Western Ave is located in North Chicago in the neighborhood of West Ridge.

3. N Kedzie Avenue at W Belmont Avenue

North Kedzie Avenue at West Belmont Avenue can be just as confusing for locals as it is for visitors. This dangerous intersection with diagonal crossroads on both sides of the underpass and connections to the Kennedy Expressway is responsible for dozens of accidents each year.

N Kedzie Ave & W Belmont Ave is located in the neighborhood of Avondale.

  1. North Lincoln Park W and North Clark Street

It always seems like rush hour at Lincoln and Clark. This dangerous intersection is not equipped to handle the heavy traffic that goes through it each day, which causes its fair share of accidents. Matters are worse for cyclists since there are no bike lanes, which forces them to intermingle with vehicle traffic.

N Lincoln Park W & N Clark St is located in the neighborhood of Lincoln Park.

5. Milwaukee Avenue and North Ave/Damen Ave

Milwaukee Avenue is part of the most dangerous junction for Chicago pedestrians. Milwaukee Avenue is no better for cyclists. While the stretch between North and Division is just .07 miles, the cracking infrastructure and worn-out paint contributes to the danger.

Milwaukee Avenue and North Ave/Damen Ave is located in the neighborhood of Wicker Park.

6. South Cicero Avenue and West 127th Street

On-ramps and off-ramps are a well-known feature of Chicago roads. The merging and unpredictable changes in speed make this road design dangerous. Cicero Avenue and 127th Street are no exception.

S Cicero Ave & W 127th St is located in the neighborhood of Crestwood.

7. La Grange Road at I-80 Westbound Ramp

Too many drivers who use La Grange Road Westbound Ramp aren’t aware of the traffic laws regarding the two right turning lanes. This intersection’s congestion and confusion often cause back-ups that get even worse when this chaos causes an accident.

La Grange Road at I-80 Westbound Ramp is located in the neighborhood of Orland Park.

8. Illinois Route 59 and Ogden Ave

The excessive number of crashes at Ogden Avenue at Illinois Route 59 has not scared away many drivers. With over 40 crashes per year, the area is as busy as ever.

Illinois Rte 59 & Ogden Ave is located in Naperville.

9. 22nd Street and Kingery Highway

The intersection at 22nd Street and Kingery Highway is a massive intersection with thousands of cars traveling through it each day. This volume of cars attracts a significant number of accidents. Reports show some 50 accidents occur at this intersection each year.

22nd St & Kingery Hwy is located in Oak Brook.

10. Bolingbrook Drive at the Southbound Ramp to I-55

The ramps onto I-55 from Bolingbrook are always congested and require extra attention. With over 40 car accidents per year, Bolingbrook Drive and I-55 is one of the greater Chicago area’s most dangerous intersections.

Bolingbrook Drive and I-55 is located in Bolingbrook.

Contact an Experienced Chicago Car Accident Attorney

If you have been injured in a car accident and need help, request a free consultation or call (312) 924-7575 to speak with an experienced Chicago auto injury lawyer today.

 

7 Ways to Lower Your Medical Bills After a Motor Vehicle Accident

If you have recently been in a car accident, you’re probably starting to realize that you are going to have some serious medical expenses.

Nobody plans to be involved in a car accident. We take precautions, like buying auto insurance, avoiding distractions behind the wheel, and wearing a seatbelt at all times. But these steps can’t stop every accident from occurring, especially when it’s caused by a negligent driver. If you are injured in an unexpected car accident, the damages you sustain will be inevitable.

Now that you are starting to see some of these bills, it’s time to think about how you will pay your medical expenses and any ways that you can lower them.

Before we move on, we should mention that if you were injured in a car accident and have not spoken to an attorney, you should do that now.

Car accidents—and everything that comes along with them—are very complicated. And small mishaps you make on your own may damage the integrity of your case, which will harm your likelihood of receiving maximum compensation for your injuries. You should, at the very least, take advantage of a free consultation with a lawyer before you proceed down this path alone.

Hire an Attorney to Negotiate on Your Behalf

After a car accident or other personal injury incident, it’s important to have an experienced attorney on your side, advocating for your financial interest.

Most people imagine lawyers working in courtrooms, researching complicated legal issues, or investigating accidents. But personal injury lawyers also work with the insurance companies and medical providers to try to reduce a client’s medical bills.

An injury lawyer’s goal is to get their client the most money possible to rebuild their life after an injury. One of the ways they do that is by making sure that their client is not getting ripped off, paying too much, or getting charged for unnecessary things.

Once your lawyer has compiled and helped reduce all of your medical bills, they can then begin settlement negotiations to get you the compensation you need to cover all your current and future medical costs.

Get to Know Your Health Insurance Coverage

One of the easiest ways to have your medical expenses reduced is simply by having an understanding of your health insurance policy. If you are familiar with the coverage that is outlined in your policy, you will be able to know what all you are entitled to.

Once you recognize that you have been incorrectly charged for something that your policy should cover, you will be able to dispute the charges and have them taken care of.

Those who never take the time to get familiar with their coverage and simply take things at their face value can lose out on thousands of dollars as a result.

Use Generic Prescriptions Instead of Name Brands

Generic versions of prescriptions are often much less expensive than their name-brand counterparts. And the generic option is just as effective as the name brand. By taking advantage of generic options, users are able to effectively save thousands of dollars a year.

Ask for Itemized Medical Bills

The bill you receive in the mail after receiving medical treatment will not show a detailed breakdown of all the services you received. By asking for an itemized breakdown of services (also called an Explanation of Benefits), you’ll see exactly what care you were given as well as the exact prices of each individual treatment. This can act as a safeguard to prevent unnecessary payments, allowing you to save money on your medical bills.

Review Bills for Errors

Taking a closer look at the medical bills you receive can potentially save you thousands of dollars. It is possible for the dollar amount on your medical bill to be incorrect. Calculating medical bills is complicated, mistakes are bound to happen from time to time. Double checking your medical bills for mistakes can save you thousands of dollars.

In some instances, people have seen duplicate charges on their account, which adds to the bill’s total. You may have even been charged for treatments and medications that you never received.

It never hurts to ask questions about your medical bills. If you believe there are discrepancies, or even that the dollar amount seems too high for any reason, it can greatly benefit you to speak up and ask questions about your bill.

Negotiate All Your Medical Bills

A lot of people do not realize that they can negotiate to lower their medical bills with the hospital, their doctors, and other healthcare providers. The negotiated rate is a discounted price for medical services and is usually equivalent to what the provider would charge the insurance companies. If you’re uninsured, you can get the same negotiated rate.

Sometimes all it takes for you to have your medical costs reduced is simply by asking for a reduction in cost. If your medical provider is unwilling to negotiate your costs there is always the option to shop around for a different provider who will be more flexible.

Since you’ll be working with an attorney, your attorney will negotiate the cost of your medical expenses on your behalf.

Contact Abels & Annes For a Free Case Evaluation

After you are injured in a car accident, it won’t be long before you start noticing just how much damage they can cause. Medical expenses, lost wages, and other costs will start adding up fast. Luckily, Illinois law allows injured victims to seek compensation for their losses through a personal injury claim.

In order to make sure that your claim is handled correctly and that you get the proper amount of money that you need, you should consider hiring an experienced car accident lawyer.

At Abels and Annes, we work to protect the rights of our clients and to get them maximum compensation for their injuries. To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation, contact us online or call us at 312-924-7575. We look forward to speaking with you.