What Are the Most Common Causes of Car Accidents in Los Angeles?633 West Fifth Street, Suite 2200
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What Are the Most Common Causes of Car Accidents in Los Angeles?
Driving in Los Angeles can be challenging, especially during peak hours, when traffic often comes to a standstill. However, despite being a city known for its slow-moving traffic, accidents with injuries still happen.
Severe crashes can have a devastating impact on victims and families, changing lives in the blink of an eye. If you or a loved one experienced a collision in Los Angeles, understanding common causes of car accidents can be vital for determining who is responsible for your damages.
Morgan & Morgan is here to help car crash victims recover what they deserve. Our tenacious and experienced Los Angeles car accident lawyers are waiting to hear from you.
Contact us today to learn about your legal rights in a free case evaluation.
Common Los Angeles Car Accident Causes
Whether you are a seasoned driver or new to the roads, being aware of common reasons for car accidents in Los Angeles can help you avoid them. If an accident has already happened, knowing what caused it could help you identify who is responsible and liable for your damages.
Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs
Drunk driving is a serious offense that puts the driver and other road users at risk. According to the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), 1,066 individuals died in alcohol-related crashes in the state in 2019.
Los Angeles drivers can be impatient and may try to make up time lost in traffic jams by speeding when the road is clear. However, driving too fast is one of the city’s most common causes of car accidents. Individuals driving above the speed limit have less time to react to unexpected situations on the road, such as cars suddenly stopping in front of them.
Distracted driving contributes to numerous car accidents in Los Angeles. Texting, talking on the phone, eating, and even changing the radio station are just a few distractions that can cause crashes.
Ignoring Traffic Signs and Signals
Running red lights or stop signs can lead to severe car accidents. In Los Angeles, intersections can be particularly hazardous, with many drivers rushing and trying to beat the light.
Poor Weather and Road Conditions
While Los Angeles usually benefits from fine and sunny weather, there are times when conditions can become hazardous for driving, such as heavy rain, fog, or strong winds. Accidents can occur when drivers fail to slow down and adjust their driving behavior to weather and road conditions.
Tailgating describes a driver following too closely behind the vehicle in front of them. Failing to leave the appropriate distance between cars is a dangerous driving behavior, which can lead to rear-end collisions, especially in heavy traffic.
Vehicle Maintenance Issues
Proper vehicle maintenance is critical for safe driving. Examples of vehicle defects that can cause accidents include:
- Worn tires
- Brake failure
- Broken headlights or taillights
- Steering malfunction
Sometimes, drivers who neglect the maintenance and repair of their cars can be responsible for accidents. In other cases, a manufacturer may be liable if a defective car part causes a collision.
If you were recently injured in a crash in Los Angeles, help is available. A car accident lawyer at Morgan & Morgan can inform you of your rights and help you determine what caused your crash and who is responsible for your damages.
Top Five Traffic Violations Causing Accidents in Los Angeles
According to the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), the top five traffic violations causing crashes in the city comprise:
- Following too Close
- Running red lights
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Improper Left Turns
If your crash was caused by a driver committing traffic violations, you could be entitled to damages in an insurance claim or lawsuit and should speak to an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible.
You Could Qualify for Compensation
No two car accidents are the same. Therefore, the compensation you could recover will depend on the facts of your accident, the extent of your injuries, and other circumstances. However, if you suffered injuries and property damage in a car crash in Los Angeles, you may be entitled to the following damages:
Healthcare costs can be steep when injured in a collision. If another is responsible, you could qualify for all necessary medical expenses due to the accident injury, including but not limited to:
- Hospital bills
- Doctor’s fees
- Prescription medications
- Physical therapy
- Medical devices
Keeping detailed records of all your medical expenses, such as receipts and bills, can be critical for a compensation claim.
If you had to miss work because of your car crash injuries in Los Angeles, you might be entitled to compensation for income loss. Damages could include lost wages and lost earning capacity if your injuries prevent you from returning to your previous job or earning the same income level.
Pain and Suffering
Severe car accidents can cause significant physical and emotional anguish. You could recover compensation for these damages, including physical pain, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life.
If your car was damaged in the crash, you could be entitled to the cost of repairs or the value of your vehicle if it was totaled. You may also qualify for compensation for other property damage, such as damaged personal items inside your car.
In rare cases, accident victims may recover punitive damages in addition to compensation. Punitive damages punish the person responsible for the car crash and deter others from engaging in similar behavior. Such damages are typically only available when the defendant showed egregious or malicious conduct.
Wrongful Death Compensation
If you lost a loved one in a car crash, you could file a wrongful death lawsuit and receive compensation such as:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Medical bills
- Lost wages and benefits from the deceased
- Loss of companionship
Since wrongful death claims can be complex, working with an experienced car accident lawyer can be essential to recovering what you deserve.
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Should I Hire a Car Accident Lawyer After a Collision in Los Angeles?
A severe car accident injury can negatively affect your life for years. Our Los Angeles car accident lawyers can help you recover emotionally, physically, and financially and fight for the compensation you deserve. When deciding whether to hire a lawyer or go it alone, bear in mind the following issues:
Insurance Companies Are Not Your Friend
Insurers are typically more interested in their bottom line than in providing a fair payout for your injuries and expenses. An insurance company may contact you after your crash and offer a quick settlement. However, this is usually a tactic to get away as cheaply as possible, and you could miss out on the compensation you need to rebuild your life. A Morgan & Morgan car accident lawyer can protect you from manipulative insurance companies.
The Legal Process Is Complex
Handling a car accident claim alone can feel overwhelming and exhausting, especially if you have to file a lawsuit to receive a fair payout. Our car accident lawyers can navigate the rules and regulations that apply to your case. While you are recovering, they can file the necessary paperwork and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf. We can also provide the advocacy and emotional support you need during this challenging time.
Proving Another’s Fault and Liability
Not all car accidents are straightforward, and determining responsibility can be challenging, especially if multiple cars are involved in a crash. A car accident lawyer at Morgan & Morgan can strengthen your case by:
- Analyzing the accident with professional crash investigators
- Gathering evidence, such as photographs, witness statements, and police reports
- Collecting and organizing proof of your damages
Our attorneys know the ins and outs of the legal system, understand how insurance companies work and can use their expertise to your advantage. Hiring Morgan & Morgan can give you peace of mind during a difficult time.
What Is the Time Limit for Car Accident Lawsuits in Los Angeles?
In Los Angeles, according to the California Code of Civil Procedure section 335.1, you generally have two years to file a personal injury claim. This means that you have two years from the day of the accident to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver, car manufacturer, or any other party responsible for your damages.
However, the statute of limitations can vary depending on the circumstances of your case. For example, if your accident involved a government entity or employee, the time to file a claim may be much shorter. On the other hand, you may have more time if you were a minor at the time of the accident or if your injury was discovered later.
Since your timeline for filing a lawsuit depends on the facts of your accident, it is crucial to consult a seasoned car accident lawyer as soon as possible. They can help you understand the specific time limits that apply to your case and guide you through the legal process. Don’t make the mistake of waiting until it’s too late to pursue the compensation you deserve.
What Are My Next Best Steps After a Car Crash in Los Angeles?
Car accidents can be overwhelming and frightening. If you or a loved one experienced a collision in Los Angeles, here are some steps you can take to protect your legal rights and ensure your well-being:
Check for injuries: If you or anyone else at the crash scene suffered injuries, call 911 for medical help and law enforcement immediately.
Move to a safe location: If possible, move your car out of traffic to prevent further accidents and injuries.
Exchange information: Exchange contact details and insurance information with the other driver(s) involved in the accident. If there are witnesses, get their contact information as well.
Document the scene: Take pictures of the accident scene, including car damage and any injuries you suffered.
Notify your insurance company: Call your insurer promptly to report the accident. They can guide you on the next steps and help you file a claim.
Seek medical attention: If you declined medical help at the scene, see your doctor immediately to ensure you do not suffer from any underlying injuries.
Consult an attorney: An experienced car accident lawyer at Morgan & Morgan can clarify your legal rights and options, negotiate with insurance companies, and help you receive fair compensation.
Keep records: Record all medical bills, car repair costs, and any other expenses related to the accident for your insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit.
If you were recently involved in a car crash in Los Angeles, Morgan & Morgan could help you prioritize your health and take the necessary steps to get the compensation you need to recover from the accident and get your life back on track.
Start the Process of Getting Justice Today
The most common causes of car crashes involve driver negligence or recklessness. If you suffered injuries in an accident caused by speeding, drunk driving, or other negligent conduct, you should not have to carry the financial burden alone. Morgan & Morgan is here to help. We have been fighting for the rights of car accident victims for decades, helping individuals and families receive the compensation they need to go on with their lives.
Our Los Angeles car accident lawyers can work tirelessly for the best possible outcome of your case. You don’t pay a dime unless we win and you receive compensation. Get help today and contact us for a free, no-obligation case review.