ClickCease How Is Fault Determined in a Multi-Vehicle Car Accident?

How Is Fault Determined in a Multi-Vehicle Car Accident?

You Need a DC Car Accident Lawyer to Help With Your Claim

If you or your loved one were injured in a multi-vehicle accident, contact a car accident lawyer at Regan Zambri Long. We can help you determine who the at-fault driver is and hold them accountable for their negligence. We have secured millions in compensation for our past clients. We are confident we can do the same for you. Call today for a free consultation with an expert car accident attorney to get the claims process started.

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When multiple vehicles are involved in an accident, it is difficult to determine fault. When you are dealing with serious injuries and property damage, the last thing on your mind is a personal injury case. However, medical expenses can pile up quickly and cause extreme financial distress. If you were not responsible for the multi-vehicle accident you were involved in, then you should not be the one to pay the bill.

Common Multi-Vehicle Collision Scenarios

Let’s first break down the difference between the type of car accidents you can be involved in. The first type of accident is a single-party accident. In this type of crash, only one driver and one car are involved. Two-party accidents are when there are two drivers and two cars involved in the crash. Finally, a multi-vehicle accident is when three or more cars are involved in a wreck.

In 2020 alone, there were over 600 fatalities from multi-car accidents in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC combined. These accidents are particularly dangerous because victims may be stuck by more than one driver. One car can get trapped in between two other vehicles. Multi-car accidents can also start car fires.

The two different kinds of multiple car accidents are:

Chain Reaction Accident

multiple vehicle car accident daylightA chain reaction accident is a type of rear-end collision. A simple example involves three drivers: Driver A, Driver B, and Driver C. Driver A is traveling behind Driver B. Driver A is speeding and recklessly driving. Traffic comes to a stop ahead, but Driver A cannot stop in time and crashes into the rear end of Driver B. Driver B does not react in time, or does not leave enough space between him and Driver C. Because of the force of the impact of the crash, Driver B’s car is pushed forward and ends up crashing into the rear end of Driver C.

Chain Reaction Pileup

A chain reaction pileup is different than a basic chain reaction crash. These accidents are highly dangerous and cause severe injuries. A typical chain reaction crash usually occurs in a line – Driver A, behind Driver B, behind Driver C. However, in a pileup, cars can crash into each other from multiple directions. Let’s break down a simple example that involves the same three drivers: Driver A, Driver B, and Driver C.

Driver A is driving toward a green traffic light, meaning he can go through the intersection without stopping. As he approaches the intersection, Driver B runs through the red light and T-bones Driver A. The impact force causes Driver A’s car to swerve into oncoming traffic, where Driver C is traveling in the opposite direction. Unable to stop in time, Driver C crashes into Driver A in a head-on collision.

Multi-Car Accident Injuries

Car accident victims can sustain life-threatening and potentially permanently debilitating injuries. These injuries will not only change a victim’s life, but they will also cause financial strain on the victim and their families. Since no one can predict when they will get into a car accident, few people are financially prepared.

Injuries car accident victims can suffer are:

  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries (paralysis)
  • Broken/fractured bones
  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Amputation
  • Burns
  • Lacerations
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Back and neck injuries (including whiplash)

If you suffered any of these injuries, contact a Regan Zambri Long personal injury attorney today for a free legal consultation. We will help you recover monetary compensation that will offset all your medical bills from the car accident.

Who Is at Fault in a Multi-Car Crash?

Every car accident is unique and there is no single assigned fault in a multi-vehicle accident. Generally speaking, the driver that caused the initial collision will be liable for the multi-vehicle accident. However, there can be multiple drivers that be held accountable.

Comparative Negligence vs. Contributory Negligence

Christopher ReganA very important part of your personal injury claim will be the contributory negligence law that is practiced in Maryland, Virginia, and DC. Contributory negligence states that if you had any responsibility in the accident, then you cannot claim compensation for your injuries.

This is contrasted with comparative negligence law, which allows you to recover some compensation even if you are liable for the accident. So, if you were rear-ended by a driver, but were tailgating the driver in front of you and crashed into them, you could be found partially liable for the accident. The Regan Zambri Long car accident lawyers are well-versed in contributory and comparative negligence laws. We will build a case that proves you bear no responsibility for the multiple car accident.

How does the insurance company determine who was at fault?

Once the insurance company is involved, insurance adjusters will be assigned to your case. You should note: adjusters are not on your side. Their job is to save money for the insurance company. They will use the following to prove fault in a multi-vehicle car accident:

  • Police report
  • Pictures
  • Video surveillance
  • Eyewitnesses
  • Medical reports

Adjusters are notorious for manipulating facts and speaking with you at your most vulnerable time to get you to accept a lowball offer. Before you speak with an adjuster, talk to a Regan Zambri Long personal injury attorney first. We will handle the correspondence with the insurance companies and take care of compensation negotiation.

Compensation you may receive

Once your Regan Zambri Long attorney determines the party or parties at fault for the multi-vehicle car accident, they will decide what damages to pursue. There are no set amount of damages you can receive for a car accident – it all depends on the severity of your injuries.

However, when you work with Regan Zambri Long, you will be working with a passionate personal injury lawyer who will fiercely protect your rights. We work tirelessly to recover the damages you deserve. The damages your lawyer will pursue may include:

  • Current and future medical costs
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of future earning capacity
  • Emotional trauma
  • Pain and suffering
  • Wrongful death

Our practice extends throughout Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC. Reach out today for your free case evaluation.

How Do I Protect Myself from a Multi-Vehicle Accident?

Not every accident can be prevented, but there are certain measures you can take to be as safe as possible during your travels. The following tips can help you avoid a collision with multiple vehicles:

Don’t tailgate

This is crucial. Create space between your car and the vehicle in front of you. This way, if an accident happens, you will have enough time to slow down and move out your car out of the way.

Check your rearview mirror

You should create the same space with the vehicle behind you. If there is enough space between your cars, then if you stop short, the car behind you will have enough time to stop without hitting you.

Stay focused

Don’t allow yourself to be distracted by your cell phone, passengers, the radio, etc. Keep your eyes focused on the road. Pay attention to your surroundings and the other drivers on the road. This way, if you see a pileup happening ahead of you, you will know to slow down and move your car out of the way of the accident.

Don’t make sudden moves

Do not drive recklessly. As much as possible, travel in a single lane and avoid swerving in and out of traffic. Pay attention to and obey traffic laws. Finally, practice patience: we are all just trying to get to our destinations safely.

Schedule a Free Consultation

Have you or your loved one sustained injuries in Washington DC, Maryland or Virginia? Regan Zambri Long PLLC has the best lawyers in the country to analyze your case and answer the questions you may have.

Call 202-960-4596

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