Unfortunately, motor vehicle collisions are an everyday occurrence in Gainesville. No matter how much you focus on safe and attentive driving, you can’t control the actions of others.
While the circumstances surrounding each accident are different, a majority of them can be attributed to negligence on the part of one party or another. The team at Fine, Farkash & Parlapiano P.A. works to help injury victims in the aftermath of a collision. We know just how devastating an injury can be, both physically and financially, and our dedicated attorneys help fight for the resources that victims and their families need to heal.
If you need a Gainesville car accident lawyer, please give us a call today at (352) 275-5974.
Understanding the Common Causes of Car Accidents
Drivers have a responsibility to operate their vehicles in a safe, responsible manner. Failure to do so could result in a collision that can have a lasting impact on everyone involved. Some of the most common causes of car accidents are:
Distracted driving – Over the past 10 years, smartphones and the distractions they pose have increasingly become a significant cause of collisions. This has forced city and state governments around the U.S. to crack down and create laws against using handheld devices while driving. Texting while driving is illegal in Florida. Distracted driving is not limited to cellphone use, however. Any activity that takes your eyes or attention away from the road, such as fiddling with the radio, talking to passengers, eating, and applying makeup, can cause collisions.
Driving too fast for conditions – While driving above the speed limit is always dangerous, sometimes even driving at the speed limit is reckless. If inclement weather is causing traffic to slow, drivers need to give themselves ample time to brake and avoid quick acceleration. Additionally, when caught in traffic, drivers need to follow the flow of traffic and not attempt to rush other vehicles.
Ignoring traffic signals – Stoplights, road signs, speed limit markers, and temporary signage are all important tools used to organize traffic and keep drivers informed. When someone disregards these signals, it could easily disrupt the greater flow of traffic, causing a collision.
Drunk driving or driving under the influence of drugs – When a driver’s reaction time and decision making are compromised by drugs and alcohol, that person is a threat to everyone on and around the road.
Wrong-way driving – Wrong-way driving accidents often manifest as head-on collisions, which are particularly deadly. Driving the wrong way can be caused by inattention, intoxication, or recklessness.
Road rage or aggressive driving – Aggressive drivers who weave in and out of traffic, speed, tailgate, change lanes without signaling, and otherwise let anger affect their decision making can be extremely difficult to predict, easily leading to serious accidents.
Tailgating – Rear-end accidents are often caused by tailgating. When drivers fail to leave enough space between their car and the vehicle in front of them, they are less equipped to react and make quick maneuvers when necessary. Drivers should leave one car length of space between their car and the car in front of them for every 10 mph of speed. This means that when traveling at 70 miles an hour, you’ll leave a gap roughly equal to the length of seven cars.
Reckless driving – Reckless drivers completely disregard their duty to consider the safety of others when they drive. Their poor choices, like speeding, running red lights, and driving in the wrong direction, can cause deadly accidents.
Medical conditions – Medical conditions like vision issues, epilepsy, heart conditions, and others can put the driver and others on the road at risk of a severe injury accident. Someone with a medical condition or who is taking medication that may affect their ability to drive should take this into consideration before getting on the road.
Weather conditions – In Gainesville, the intense rain that we often get can put drivers at heightened risk for accidents. In addition to making the roadways slick and obstructing visibility, intense rains can often be accompanied by heavy winds. When inclement weather is a factor, drivers need to operate their vehicles accordingly. Failure to do so puts them at risk of hydroplaning and causing an accident.
Poor road conditions – Poorly maintained roads can lead to accidents. If you are involved in an accident caused by a road defect, the responsibility of the collision may fall to the local municipality, or whichever entity is responsible for maintaining the road.
Dangerous or defective auto parts – Car manufacturers have a duty to provide customers with products that were safely designed, manufactured, and tested. If even one part of a vehicle is defective, it could set off a chain of events causing the entire car to malfunction.
These are just a few of the countless reasons that car accidents occur. If you were involved in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence or recklessness, you should learn about your right to hold them financially accountable.
Proving the Cause of a Motor Vehicle Accident
In the aftermath of an accident, if someone else’s actions or inaction has caused you harm, you may be able to hold the at-fault party accountable for your resulting expenses and suffering. To hold the responsible party accountable, you have to be able to prove that their actions caused the accident. Doing so many require gathering:
- Evidence from the scene – Photographs from the scene of the accident can tell a lot about how the collision occurred. If these are not available, your lawyer may be able to employ an accident reconstructionist to help shed light on what caused the crash.
- Police report – A report must be filed for any accident that causes injury or significant property damage. The report from your accident can be a valuable record to prove certain facts about the accident.
- Witness statements – Bystanders or other drivers who witnessed the accident can provide testimony to corroborate your version of events.
Additional evidence such as driving records, blood alcohol levels, repair status of the vehicles involved, and more can all come into play. Your car accident lawyer will be able to identify what further evidence might be relevant in your case.
What to Do If You Have Been Hurt in a Crash
The moments following an accident are often a blur for victims. No matter the specifics of your case, taking the following steps will put you in a better position to hold the responsible party accountable for the pain they have caused:
- Seek help immediately. When accidents are serious, a police officer needs to be called to the scene to take a report. Additionally, it is important that you seek medical attention as soon as possible. Even if you do not want to take an ambulance to the hospital, you should know that some serious injuries involve delayed symptoms, and delaying treatment can make them worse.
- Keep all records related to the crash and your injuries. These records include hospital receipts, medical insurance statements, car insurance information, and any other paperwork you receive as a result of your accident and injury. Your lawyer will be able to sort through this information and use what is relevant to strengthen your case.
- Take photographs. If you are able to, document the accident scene from different angles and distances. Take pictures of everything, including skid marks, vehicle damage, vehicle positioning, injuries, weather conditions, and more.
- Call a lawyer as soon as possible. Though it can feel overwhelming to seek legal help after an accident, a lawyer can act as a source of support for injury victims and their families. Ultimately, a skilled attorney can help families seek the financial relief that they need following a serious accident.
If you are coping with catastrophic injuries after the accident, you may not be able to do all of these steps right away or at all. If this is your situation, contact a lawyer immediately. A trusted attorney can advise you of your legal options no matter what status your case is in.
How a Gainesville Car Accident Attorney Can Help You
Especially if you have never needed to hire a lawyer before, making the decision to do so can be overwhelming. A Gainesville personal injury attorney’s objective is to listen to you, understand what happened, investigate potential causes, calculate the damages, and help you pursue the compensation that you need.
When someone else’s carelessness threatens your physical health, financial stability, future prospects, and enjoyment of life, you deserve quality legal representation. The lawyers at Fine, Farkash & Parlapiano P.A. fight for justice on behalf of Gainesville accident victims.
Call our law office today at (352) 275-5974 to schedule a free consultation with a knowledgeable car accident lawyer. You will never pay anything upfront, and you will not owe us anything unless we secure compensation for your case.