Reno Car Accident Lawyer
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As the leading cause of accidental injury in the U.S., car accidents have become a part of daily life for many Americans. When passing these accidents on city streets and highways, we may not fully realize what consequences victims can suffer. When injured in an auto accidents ourselves, however, we realize just how seriously a car accident can impact a person physically, emotionally and financially.
At Shook & Stone, a large part of our practice is focused on providing car accident victims in Reno and Carson City with the support and legal counsel they need to protect their rights. When an accident is caused by the negligence of another driver, injured victims have the right to file personal injury claims to secure compensation for their losses.
Types of Car Accidents
There are numerous types of car accidents, all of which have the potential to cause serious injuries. In some cases, especially in truck accidents, catastrophic injuries and wrongful death can result. Auto accidents can be classified by the type of collision, such as:
This type of accident occurs when the front end of one vehicle collides with the rear end of another vehicle. These accidents can often be attributed to situations where one driver was following too closely behind another driver, leaving insufficient space to brake if the driver in front slows down or stops.
Side Impact Accidents
Side impact collisions may include incidents where vehicles sideswipe one another or where the front end of one vehicle collides with the side of another vehicle (T-bone collision). In either scenario, the injuries sustained by any vehicle occupant on the side of the car that is struck may be more likely to sustain serious injuries.
One of the most serious types of car accidents, head-on collisions occur when the front ends of two vehicles collide. When vehicles collide in this way, the force of impact is far greater because it equals the combined force of both vehicles. In a head-on accident where each vehicle is traveling 35 mph, for example, the force of impact would be equivalent to a car hitting a fixed object at 70 mph.
In some collisions, a vehicle may roll over. These "rollover accidents" can cause catastrophic injuries, particularly if the roof caves in on the occupants of the vehicle. Some rollover injuries can be attributed to poorly designed or manufactured vehicles or defective auto parts, in which case our attorneys may seek to hold the at-fault manufacturer accountable.
When two or more motor vehicles are involved in an accident, this is considered a multi-vehicle accident. Virtually any party involved in a multi-vehicle accident may be injured, but those in smaller vehicles or on motorcycles are more likely to sustain serious injuries than occupants of larger vehicles.
Single Vehicle Accidents
Many single vehicle accidents occur when a car, SUV or other motor vehicle collides with a fixed object. Though some drivers involved single vehicle accidents may worry that they are the only party to be held to blame, this is not always the case. The crash may have occurred due to a hazardous roadway, defective auto part or other external factor.
Hit and Run Accidents
A hit and run accident occurs when a party involved in the collision flees the scene without offering aid or exchanging insurance and contact information. Even in these accidents, a Reno car accident lawyer may be able to offer counsel to help a victim locate the at-fault party or at the very least recover fair compensation from his or her own insurance policy.
If another person is at fault for causing an accident, he or she may be held liable for compensating injured victims. Although certain types of car accidents may have a higher potential for resulting in injuries, such as multi-vehicle accidents and head-on collisions, any type of motor vehicle collision can cause physical damage. Some common car accident injuries include: whiplash, brain injuries, bone breaks, neck, back and spinal cord injuries, burns, paralysis and others.
Causes of Auto Accidents
Driver error is the most common cause of motor vehicle accidents in Reno and throughout the nation. By law, drivers are obligated to act with reasonable care on roads and highways. Their negligence can result in devastating consequences. Some of the common causes of car accidents include:
One of the most important parts of safe driving is paying attention to the road, other vehicles and the task at hand. Distracted driving occurs when a driver takes his or her manual, physical or cognitive attention from driving. Common culprits include texting, talking on the phone, eating, drinking, smoking, talking to passengers and tending to in-vehicle navigation or entertainment systems.
Texting While Driving
This is one of the most dangerous types of distracted driving. When a person sends and receives text messages while driving, his or her eyes will be drawn from the road, one or both hands taken from the steering wheel and mental attention given to the text instead of driving. This creates the perfect recipe for disaster.
Alcohol is known to impair vision, judgment and motor skills. It can also affect reaction time. When a driver gets behind the wheel after drinking, this places everyone on the road at risk. Driving with a blood alcohol concentration of .08% or while one's abilities are impaired is also illegal. Our attorneys are committed to seeking justice for those injured by drunk drivers.
Driving above the posted speed limit or too fast for current road, weather or traffic conditions can increase one's chances of being involved in a car accident. It also increases the likelihood of injury. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), about one-third of traffic fatalities occur in speeding-related accidents.
Reckless or Aggressive Driving
Drivers that weave in and out of traffic, speed and race on public roadways place themselves and everyone in the area in danger of being involved in serious collisions. If you were involved in an accident caused by an aggressive or reckless driver, one of our lawyers may be able to help you hold that driver responsible for his or her behavior.
Failing to Obey Traffic Signs, Signals and Laws
Traffic laws are in place to keep traffic moving and to reduce the likelihood of collisions. When stop signs, traffic lights and traffic laws are ignored or willfully violated, accidents are more likely to occur. Our team handles car accident claims involving failures to yield the right of way, tailgating, running red lights, stop sign violations and more.
Poorly Maintained Roadways
Negligent drivers do not cause all auto accidents. Some collisions can be attributed to external factors, such as hazardous roads. If roadways are not properly designed and maintained, they may cause collisions. Potholes, debris, missing traffic signs and defective guardrails are examples of dangerous conditions on roads.
Defective Auto Parts
Some motor vehicle accidents may result from poorly designed or improperly manufactured auto parts. Brakes, tires, steering systems, airbags and other parts of motor vehicles need to function properly if a driver is drive safely and avoid serious injury in a collision. At Shook & Stone, we hold auto manufacturers accountable if their products cause car accidents.
Compensation for Car Accident Victims in Nevada
Successful car accident claims are hinged on proving fault. Once liability has been determined, negligent drivers will be responsible for compensating victims. Courts will award victims financial compensation for their damages in three categories: economic damages, non-economic damages and punitive damages.
Economic damages are awarded to victims to cover the financial burdens their injuries created. Costly medical bills from any procedure or treatment that were required can be recovered. In addition, victims can also recover lost wages that resulted from their inability to work.
Victims can also recover compensation non-economic losses. Emotional damages such as pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment or quality of life will be considered when awarding victims non-economic damages. In cases involving wrongful death claims, families can be compensated for their emotional distress, grief, sorrow and loss of companionship.
In certain cases, courts will award punitive damages to further punish extreme acts of negligence. Cases involving drunk driving accidents may involve punitive damages.
Schedule a Free Case Review with a Reno Car Accident Attorney
At Shook & Stone, our Reno personal injury attorneys have been representing the injured since 1997. We have extensive knowledge of personal injury law and are experienced in dealing with insurance companies, and always fight for a favorable resolution. Having successfully secured more than $100 million in compensation for clients in both settlements and verdicts, you can be confident that our legal team can help you obtain the best compensation possible. If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident in Reno or Carson City, contact Shook & Stone.