Archive for the ‘Auto Accidents’ Category

Avoiding Risks of Buffalo Drunk Driving Collisions

17
Jul 2018
By:

Buffalo auto accident attorneyIt’s prime time for discussing the risks of drunk driving collisions as we enter the second half of summer and head toward the start of football and the upcoming holiday season.

The New York State Department of Health reported more than 1,000 New Yorkers are killed each year in traffic collisions. More than 136,000 injury victims are treated in hospital emergency rooms following crashes, and 13,000 suffer injuries requiring hospitalization. Nationwide, drunk drivers are blamed for at least one-third of all fatal traffic collisions, claiming more than 10,000 lives a year.

While Christmas and New Year’s grab most of the attention when it comes to drunk driving, an experienced Buffalo car accident lawyer knows the summer months are typically the most dangerous time of the year for drunk drivers. Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, and Labor Day bring increased risks for motorists, but travel, boating, barbecues and sporting events make the entire summer a dangerous time when it comes to drunk driving.

Reducing Risks of Alcohol-Involved Motor-Vehicle Collisions

A recent article by Driving Tests outlined steps motorists can take to reduce the risks of being involved in a motor vehicle collision with a drunk driver:

  • Wear your seat belt.
  • Leave plenty of following distance.
  • Use extra caution at intersections.
  • Avoid night driving.
  • Be highly aware during holiday travel.
  • Be a designated driver.
  • Support and cooperate with sobriety checkpoints.

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of injury-related death in Erie County, and a disproportionately high number of collisions are caused by drivers who have had too much to drink. In fact, Erie County reports more than 300 drunk driving collisions a year, more than anywhere else in upstate New York.

New York Injury Claims Against Drunk Drivers

A recent article by Buffalo News interviewed a Cheektowaga police officer who has made more than 300 drunk driving arrests. The officer estimated at least 25 percent of all traffic accidents he investigates involve a driver impaired by either drugs or alcohol. Tell-tale signs of a drunk driver read like a laundry list of poor driving behaviors: speeding, driving too slowly, driving aggressively or recklessly, weaving in and out of lanes, driving the wrong way and driving without headlights are all common signs of a drunk behind the wheel.

Drunk driving collisions are among the most complex personal injury and wrongful death cases a New York law firm can handle. While proof an at-fault driver was drunk at the wheel is often proof of negligence, your law firm must still work to identify all available insurance coverage. Determining the full extent of your compensable injuries is also critical to making a full financial recovery.

Multiple victims, serious injuries, and limited insurance coverage can also make timely filing of your claims vital to making a recovery. This may include pursuing your own insurer for uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage. New York auto insurance law mandates uninsured motorist coverage, which will protect you in a collision with a hit-and-run driver or a driver who lacks auto insurance. Underinsured motorist coverage can be just as important but is optional under New York law. It will protect you in the event an at-fault driver does not have enough insurance to pay the full extent of damages.

If you have been injured in an accident with a drunk driver, contact the Law Offices of James Morris for a free consultation.

Distracted Driving Dangers in Buffalo

3
May 2018
By:

Buffalo auto accident attorneyLike other cities across the United States, Buffalo has suffered from the effects of distracted driving. Distracted driving has become an even more pervasive problem in recent years as in-vehicle technology becomes more prevalent in new vehicles. Unfortunately, driver behavior has not been consistent with either the available accident data or public opinion surveys, all of which demonstrate that distracted driving leads to accidents.

It is important for Buffalo drivers to understand the risks of distracted driving and accept personal responsibility for keeping their attention on the road ahead.

The Disconnect Between Drivers’ Beliefs and Behaviors

Distracted driving dangers are a constant presence in the media. In addition to the reports of horrible injuries and deaths caused by distracted drivers, there are also ongoing efforts from advocacy groups and government traffic safety agencies. These efforts appear to be effectively spreading their message. According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, distracted driving surpassed other risky behaviors (such as aggressive or impaired driving) and was ranked number one in a survey of risky behaviors drivers believed to be on the rise.

Yet in spite of this, smartphone usage while driving appears to be on the rise. The AAA survey found that the number of drivers who report regularly making cell phone calls while driving jumped 46 percent between 2013 and 2018. A Zendrive study reported by Bloomberg found that almost every state experienced an increase in the percentage of time drivers spent on the phone over a yearlong period. Drastic increases were found in Rhode Island (38.7 percent), Oregon (42 percent) and California (54.2 percent).

Here in New York, drivers were found to have a 16.8 percent increase in the portion of their driving time spent on the phone. The Governor’s Office also announced an increase in the number of tickets issued for texting while driving between 2011 and 2016.

The Consequences of Distracted Driving in New York State

These studies suggest that drivers are, indeed, aware of the problem of distracted driving. Yet this knowledge is not enough to help drivers resist the temptation to divert their attention to smartphones, navigation systems, or in-vehicle entertainment systems. There are many consequences to such distraction. The Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee reports that using a portable electronic device now carries increased penalties of five violation points against the driver’s license in addition to a fine. These sanctions apply to all prohibited activities, including texting, emailing, browsing the internet, making phone calls, playing games and using mobile applications.

In addition to fines and points, distracted drivers can also face the unpleasant experience of a civil lawsuit. Injury victims have the legal right to be compensated for their losses by a negligent driver. A driver who negligently causes an accident while distracted can be liable for property damage, medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other costs related to the accident. It is important for injury victims to hold distracted drivers accountable through a personal injury claim or lawsuit. This is an important deterrent to preventing future accidents.

A Buffalo car accident attorney can help injury victims protect their legal right to be compensated by a distracted driver’s insurance company while helping to make the roads safer for everyone.

Tips to Keep Buffalo Drivers Safe

Buffalo auto accident attorney

Buffalo car accidents happen for many reasons. Distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding, and many other unsafe driving habits can increase the chances of causing a car accident. Buffalo’s infamous winter weather can linger well into April and also increase the likelihood of being injured in a car accident.

By understanding the common causes of auto accidents and addressing one’s own driving habits, vehicle operators can help keep the roads of Buffalo safe for everyone.

The Recommendations from the Experts

CTV News offers tips for safe driving. One driving instructor reminded drivers to go back to the basic skills that prepared them for their test. Use signals on every turn, make a full and complete stop at every stop sign, turn into the nearest lane of traffic, and follow other basic rules of the road. Many drivers have spent decades since their driving tests developing bad habits. Make an honest assessment of your driving skills and identify any areas which have become sloppy over years.

The driving instructor also discouraged drivers from practicing “target fixation” –  a visual technique in which the driver focuses solely on the road ahead. The safer practice is to scan all areas around your vehicle in order to ascertain traffic conditions on all sides. Perform regular checks of your vehicle’s rear-view and side mirrors. This is a technique borrowed from pilots, who must regularly inspect many different instruments. Monitor traffic and road hazards in the nearby roadway – even those which are not directly in your path of travel. This can help drivers plan an “exit route” in the event of a sudden obstruction in the roadway.

Many drivers do not leave adequate space between their vehicles and vehicles in front of them (an average of only .8 seconds). While two car lengths may be sufficient while driving in fair weather conditions, ice and snow can cause a vehicle to require a greater stopping distance. A safer rule to follow is four seconds of space between your vehicle and the one in front of you. This can be measured by allowing the vehicle ahead of yours to pass a fixed point (such as a building or sign), then timing how long it takes your vehicle to reach the same point. If the time was less than four seconds, slow down and create more space between your vehicle and those ahead of you. Buffalo’s cold climate often causes hazardous driving conditions (such as rain, hail, sleet, snow, and ice). Slow down and exercise particular caution in these circumstances.

Finally, drivers should be careful not to rely too heavily upon vehicle safety features, which can lull them into a false sense of security. Anti-lock brakes will not shorten the distance required for the vehicle to stop. Backup cameras cannot see all obstructions. Lane drift alerts may not be activated in time to avoid a collision. Drivers must not become so reliant on such features that they fail to exercise basic caution.

When drivers fail to act in a safe manner, innocent victims can be injured as a result. The legal advocacy a car accident attorney provides can help encourage Buffalo road users to become safer drivers. Filing personal injury claims with a negligent driver’s insurance company not only helps injury victims access the compensation to which the law entitles them, but also holds drivers accountable for dangerous behavior.

Buffalo Drivers Can Prevent Accidents With Tire Safety

8
Mar 2018
By:

Buffalo auto accident attorneyTires are vital pieces of vehicle safety equipment that are easy to take for granted. Many drivers run their vehicles for thousands of miles without considering the inflation and tread of their tires. It can be easy to forget about the extensive wear and tear to which tires are subjected – at least until there is a problem.

Proper maintenance can help drivers identify tire problems and address them before they can cause an auto accident. When accidents do occur, a Buffalo car accident attorney can help victims protect their legal right to compensation.

Buffalo Roads Are Hard on Tires

Like other cold-weather cities, Buffalo has often-icy roadways, which can seriously damage tires. Ice, snow, and road salt can all lead to uneven roadway surfaces, and the damage done to tires lingers long after winter’s end. Temperature fluctuations can expand small chips or cracks in roadway asphalt or gravel. This can cause larger obstructions, such as potholes, to develop in the roadway. Such obstructions can seriously damage tires.

Many Buffalo residents have been seriously injured or even killed in car accidents caused by damaged tires. In 2016, the Buffalo News reported that a small child, only three years old, was struck by a runaway car tire while waiting at a bus stop. She was transported to a local hospital with unknown injuries. The tire had flown off a passenger vehicle passing by the bus stop. It is not known whether a manufacturing defect or negligence on the part of the owner was responsible for the tire coming loose.

In nearby Cheektowaga, a man caused a pileup of several vehicles after one of his tires blew out while driving on Route 33. According to WIVB, the man lost control of his vehicle after the tire blew out, and ended up striking a light pole in the center median. The pole then fell across lanes in the opposite direction. Drivers swerving to avoid the pole ended up rear-ending one another, flipping over, and even becoming airborne. Several were transported to nearby hospitals. In addition to injuries, the tire blowout also caused heavy delays during rush hour traffic.

What Buffalo Drivers Can Do to Prevent Tire-Related Accidents

Buffalo drivers must take responsibility for maintaining their tires in a safe condition. Failure to do so may cause an insurance company or jury to find the driver negligent. The negligent driver can, in turn, be held legally responsible for compensating the victims of a resulting accident for their injuries and financial losses.

While there is no clear rule for avoiding liability due to negligent tire maintenance, drivers can take simple steps to reduce the likelihood of being found negligent. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has published maintenance schedule suggestions for standard tires. Vehicle owners should also be sure to inspect their tires regularly before setting out on the road. Look for debris which might puncture the tire, under- or over-inflation, and worn treads.

After a tire-related car accident, a Buffalo car accident attorney can help injury victims determine who was liable for causing the accident and how they can best access compensation for their injuries.

Buffalo Car Accidents Caused By Black Ice

12
Feb 2018
By:

Buffalo auto accident attorneyWhen it comes to winter driving in New York, motorists in Buffalo are old pros. But even pros are no match for the dangers posed by black ice.

What may look like clear wet pavement might actually be a thin sheet of ice. Unlike snow and slush, where usually at least one tire will maintain some traction or steering ability, black ice can leave a vehicle uncontrollable and unstoppable. Even four-wheel drives are no match for this serious winter threat.

We reported last month on the dangers of intersection collisions during winter weather. While black ice may be present at intersections or on surfaces  where moisture is present in below-freezing temperatures, it is most common on bridges and overpasses.

Icy Conditions Are a Common Threat on New York Roads

Your only clue may be that the pavement will appear slightly darker and duller than the rest of the road surface, according to a recent report in the New York Times.

Experienced auto accident attorneys in Buffalo know the safest course of action is to just assume that black ice is present whenever traveling in freezing temperatures, especially at night.

Authorities advise those who do hit black ice to keep their foot off the gas. Hitting the brakes or turning the steering wheel can make matters worse.

Determining Fault in Winter Traffic Collisions

While winter weather can be a factor in many traffic collisions, it doesn’t alleviate a driver’s responsibility to use due care and maintain control of their vehicle. This can mean reducing speed, not following too closely, taking extra time to slow down when approaching turns or intersections, and otherwise making allowances for road and weather conditions.

New York Civil Law, Article 14-A-(1411-1413), follows a comparative negligence model. What this means is even if you are found partially at fault for a collision, you may still be able to make a recovery against the at-fault party. While this may make recovery possible, it can also make such cases more complex.

Damages can also be a tricky element to prove, especially if you don’t seek immediate medical attention. Defendants may have room to argue that your injury was not causally related to the crash or not as serious as you claim. Obtaining prompt medical treatment is important to help you document your injuries.

Consulting with an experienced auto accident attorney in Buffalo is important whenever a serious collision occurs, and especially so when weather is being blamed as a factor in a traffic accident. Quickly and carefully documenting conditions will be important as the evidence can literally melt away.

Because black ice can render a vehicle uncontrollable, a car may veer off the road, increasing the risk of serious injury. Such incidents may also result in collisions involving private property and property damage.

Leaving yourself a little extra time and using a little extra care can help keep you safe. Fortunately, spring is just around the corner.

Buffalo Intersections a Primary Winter Accident Threat

15
Jan 2018
By:

Buffalo auto accident attorneysIntersections are natural points of conflict on the roads. They are the place where traffic risks comes to meet.

A dangerous intersection in Amherst, NY, nicknamed “death corner,” is receiving special attention from the local traffic safety board, according to ABC7. Neighbors report numerous serious collisions, including rollover and entrapment accidents.

But when you add winter weather to the mix, traveling through intersections is the most dangerous thing most of us will do over the next few months. Most winter accidents in Buffalo can still be prevented, but extra vigilance will be critical.

Winter accidents in Buffalo – Safety and Liability

Poor weather only complicates the job of determining fault after an intersection collision in Buffalo. Intersection accidents are often already complex cases. Failure to yield, following too closely, running red lights, speeding and distracted driving are all common causes. Bicyclists and pedestrians are frequently involved. And involved motorists are sometimes entering or exiting private drives or parking lots.

Following an accident, there are many actions you can take to help your claim. Carefully documenting the scene with cell phone photographs is a good first step. But when winter weather is a factor in a serious or fatal collision, consulting an experienced Buffalo injury lawyer in a timely manner becomes even more critical.

Documenting weather conditions before they disappear is challenging. But the critical need to determine causation and identify all at-fault parties does not change just because of ice and snow. In fact, proving an at-fault party failed to use reasonable care can be even more critical when poor weather is partially to blame.

For instance, something as simple as clearing ice and snow from your hood and windshield can have a significant impact on accident risks, both for you and for other motorists on the road.

New York law is in flux on the issue of a motorist’s responsibility to clear ice and snow from their vehicle, with lawmakers having introduced several pieces of legislation in recent years. As of the start of 2018, the trucking industry is opposing a measure that would apply specifically to tractor trailers and other large commercial vehicles.

Resolving to be a safe driver will not only improve your odds of avoiding a weather related collision, but also reduce the chances you will be found at fault if a crash does happen.

Tips for safe driving this winter

Plan to stop well before reaching an intersection and remain alert for pedestrians or other points of potential conflict. Always be prepared to yield the right of way. Don’t assume an approaching motorist can or will stop even if you have the legal right to proceed.

Obey all traffic control devices and signals. Running yellow lights becomes particularly dangerous during bad weather, especially when visibility is reduced, because motorists require more stopping distance.

Overall, safe winter driving starts with planning. Lake effect snow can be particularly dangerous in Buffalo, where the weather is known to deteriorate rapidly. Buffalo News and AAA provide winter-driving safety tips.

Planning includes having your vehicle properly serviced. Nothing is more basic than appropriate tires and a good battery. During the first cold spell of the year, AAA reported more than 2,600 calls from motorists stranded in Central or Western New York because of a dead battery.

Travel with an emergency kit, a charged cell phone and at least half a tank of gas.

Beware of the dangers of black ice. Roads that appear clear, particularly bridges and highway exit ramps, may be covered in ice. Contact an experienced Buffalo auto accident attorney if you have been injured in a winter weather crash.

Speeding as a Major Factor in Buffalo Accidents

30
Oct 2017
By:

Speeding is a Major Factor in Buffalo Auto Accident Fatalities

With so much media attention on drunk driving, it can be easy to forget that one of the greatest dangers faced on the roads is simple speeding.

Speeding increases the force generated by a collision, which in turn increases the severity of injuries sustained, and also increases the likelihood that those injuries will be fatal. The World Health Organization reports that an injury victim is twenty times more likely to die in an impact at 80 kilometers per hour (49 mph) than impact at 30 kilometers per hour (19 mph).

After any auto accident, an experienced Buffalo car accident attorney will help injury victims identify all contributing factors and all parties responsible for causing their injuries, to secure the fair legal compensation to which they are entitled. At The Law Offices of James Morris, we work tirelessly to ensure each victim gets the maximum compensation that they deserve.

Speeding Fatalities Are on the Rise

After the economic crash of 2008, fewer vehicles were on the road, and traffic fatalities experienced a corresponding drop. The Washington Post reports that United State traffic fatalities hit an all-time low in 2011. Unfortunately, traffic fatalities have been steadily climbing ever since. Now, in 2017, more than eighteen thousand people died on the road between January 1 and June 31. Another 2.1 million people were seriously injured in car accidents during that same time. Despite some improvements in safety, hundreds of injury victims die on the roads of America every day. According to the National Transportation Safety Board, speeding accidents caused more than one hundred thousand deaths in the United States between 2005 and 2014.

Speeding and speeding-related accidents are more likely to occur in areas which do not use photo enforcement programs. The National Center for Biotechnology Information published a longitudinal review of studies which measured the efficacy of automated enforcement technology programs. Of twenty-eight studies reviewed, every single one reported a lower number of crashes after implementation of a speed enforcement technology program. Bloomberg reports that such technologies are widely acknowledged to be an effective deterrent to speeding, but that they are currently only used in fourteen states and the District of Columbia. Their efficiency has caused the National Transportation Safety Board to recommend that states remove laws which prohibit the use of such technologies.

What You Can Do to Avoid Speeding-Related Accidents

The reason photo enforcement technologies are so effective is that they hold drivers accountable for their driving behaviors with definitive, visual proof of their actions. Until an individual driver accepts personal responsibility for safe driving habits, no amount of enforcement will reduce speeding accidents.

Friends and family members should speak up when a driver’s speed is not safe, especially when it becomes a habit. While this can be an uncomfortable discussion, it is one that can save lives. There are also immediate benefits to eliminating speeding in your personal driving behaviors. Section 1180 of the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law prohibits driving a vehicle at a speed greater than is reasonable and prudent under the current conditions and hazards.

Violation of this law can not only result in a traffic citation, but it can also make the driver legally responsible for causing any accident which occurs as a result. If you or a loved one has been injured by a negligent driver, contact an experienced Buffalo car accident attorney as soon as possible. You have the right to be compensated for your injuries. Contact us today.

New York State Considers Measures to Curb Distracted Driving

27
Sep 2017
By:

Distracted driving has become an increasingly pervasive threat to public safety in recent years. Now, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is taking measures to make it easier for law enforcement officers to cite drivers who have violated laws banning mobile device use while driving.

The hope is that this measure will drive down the number of distracted driving accidents in NewTextalyzers considered for New York State York. Given that distraction is cited as the primary reason for the uptick in traffic accidents nationally, addressing it is paramount.

Know also that following a distracted driving crash, those injured have legal rights which must be protected. At James Morris Law, we provide just that.

How to Test for Distracted Driving: the Textalyzer Test

Business Insider reports that Governor Cuomo’s order directs the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee to examine a new device which allows officers to quickly check for recent mobile device use after an auto accident. This technology is known as the “textalyzer”, and in many ways, it is legally similar to the use of a breathalyzer to check for impairment after an auto accident. The Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee has been tasked with reporting on the technology, civil liberties issues surrounding its use, and the privacy implications of such a device.

Mobile phone manufacturers are also attempting to address this problem by improving and enhancing “do not disturb” features on smartphones. As usual, Apple has been at the head of this trend. Business Insider reports that the iOS 11 operating system for iPhone – due for release in late 2017 – will include a comprehensive “do not disturb while driving” function. This function will automatically detect when a user is driving and engage itself. The user receives no notifications and cannot access the home screen until he or she stops driving. The user can override this setting by following a series of prompts. While this override feature is necessary in the event that a user is the passenger (not driver) of a vehicle, it leaves open the concerning possibility that users can override the feature and use a fully accessible smartphone while driving.

How Motorists Can Curb Distracted Driving

Do Not Disturb features raise a broader discussion into the issue of distracted driving. Distracted driving is responsible for thousands of deaths and injuries every year. In fact, Apple’s move to introduce the comprehensive function for iOS 11 comes after it was sued for failing to include such features in earlier versions. According to the Guardian, Bethany and James Modisette sued Apple for the wrongful death of their five-year-old daughter, who was killed in a car accident by a driver using FaceTime while driving. The Modisettes alleged that Apple held patents on technology to lock out iPhone functions while driving, but had failed to implement them in their products, thus contributing to their daughter’s death.

While the improvement and expansion of Do Not Disturb features can certainly help target the problem, it falls to each individual driver to accept personal responsibility for implementing safe driving habits. No technology can completely eradicate the dangers of distracted driving. No Do Not Disturb feature can be forcefully implemented in every driving situation. Only a personal commitment to avoiding distractions can prevent a driver from becoming distracted. Passengers should speak up when they notice their driver is becoming distracted. Parents should implement and enforce specific guidelines for their teen drivers, whose inexperience makes distracted driving particularly dangerous for them.

 

Older Cars Four Times More Deadly Than Newer Models, Study Says

23
Jun 2017
By:

Buying your teen an older car? A new study may give you reason to reassess.

Researchers in Australia looked at how older-model cars (those made before 2000) stand up to the newer ones. Of course it stands to reason that even all else identical, any newer car would be safer than an older one with more miles an wear. But beyond that, newer models come with the benefit of years of engineering technology advancement and increased safety features like forward collision warning and rearview cameras.

But even beyond that, researchers say, there is structural integrity. In a test between a 1998 Toyota Corolla and its 2015 counterpart, the results weren’t even close. The ANCAP showed how the older vehicle was quickly reduced to a crumpled heap, the front wheel smashed inside the front cabin, the door frame collapsed and the roof buckled. Meanwhile, the front cabin of the newer vehicle was largely intact. The door could still be opened.

While the newer model occupant would likely have survived unscathed, the driver of the older car would have either died or suffered severe traumatic injuries to the brain, chest and legs. It should be noted the older vehicle didn’t have airbags (which were mandated standard in the U.S. by that time, but not in Australia or New Zealand), though researchers concluded in this particular case, that wouldn’t have made a huge difference.

By today’s standards, that older model car – just 17 years older than the newer one –  would receive a zero-star safety rating, with the 2015 model would get 5 out of 5 stars.

Older Cars Overrepresented in Fatal Crashes

The data underscores what we already know about fatal car accidents in Buffalo and elsewhere: The older the car, the more likely it is to be involved in a fatal crash. This is especially concerning when we consider that older cars are more likely to be driven by two of the most vulnerable motorists: Teenagers and elderly drivers.

Research published in a 2014 issue of the journal Injury Prevention revealed more than half of teens killed in crashes between 2008 and 2012 were in vehicles that were 11 years or older. Eighty-two percent of those who died were in vehicles that were at least 6-years-old.

The Australian researchers found that while older cars represented roughly 20 percent of cars on the road, they account for 33 percent of fatal crashes. In comparison, newer model cars account for 31 percent of cars on the road, yet are involved in 13 percent of fatal crashes.

Recovering Damages

Because older cars are more likely to be involved in crashes that are fatal or life-threatening, it’s imperative that drivers keep them well-maintained and properly insured. Although maintenance isn’t likely to improve the structural integrity of your older car, it can likely help to make sure your risk isn’t higher. Consider too that if some improper vehicle maintenance plays a role in the crash, you could be deemed liable, or at least comparatively negligent. (In New York, N.Y. C.P.L.R. § 1411 holds that comparative negligence won’t bar recovery for damages, but it can proportionately diminish the amount to which you are entitled).

You may also want to consider higher-than-average UM/ UIM (uninsured/ underinsured) motorist coverage. Such coverage isn’t required under New York law, but especially for drivers of older cars, it’s recommended.

If you or your teen driver suffer injury Buffalo car accident, our injury lawyers will work to help you identify every viable avenue for compensation.

Why Seek Medical Attention after a Rear-End Crash in Buffalo

26
Jan 2016
By:

When a rear-end car accident happens, victims of the collision could be hurt as a result of the crash impact. It is imperative for everyone involved in the accident to seek medical attention. You should get an exam performed even if you believe your injuries are relatively minor and will go away on their own. drive-time-676275-m

Why Seek Medical Attention After a Rear-End Crash in Buffalo?

New York is a no fault insurance state, and every driver has to buy personal injury protection (PIP) insurance coverage. This means no matter how a rear-end crash happened, all victims can make a claim with their own insurance provider to have certain post-crash losses covered. Covered losses can include medical bills.

Getting an auto insurer to pay for your injury treatment can save you a significant amount of money, especially as Auto Insurance Center warns the average cost of a personal injury protection (PIP) claim was $8,017 as of 2013. If you cannot make a successful injury claim, you will have to cover costs of necessary treatment and bear other expenses of the rear-end accident on your own.

To make a successful injury claim, you have to be able to provide proof of injuries sustained in the accident. You must both show the crash caused the injuries and also show the extent of the injuries.  You can do this only if you go and see a doctor and the doctor conducts a comprehensive exam. The doctor should carefully document all of the damage sustained in the crash as well as how badly each injury affects your health over the short-term and long-term.

When you make an injury claim, the medical records from after the accident will be used to determine if you are entitled to compensation and the amount of damages. You do not want to be left without medical records due to skipping the doctor, as this could mean you are not able to make your claim.

Medical records showing the extent of injuries will also be useful if you suffered serious injuries and are able to make a personal injury claim against the other driver in the crash. Drivers have to buy liability insurance in New York, and crash victims get to sue when their injuries are more serious than no fault policies cover.

Victims have to prove the other driver was liable, which is usually easy for drivers in lead vehicles in rear-end crash cases since there is a presumption the rear driver is responsible for hitting the other vehicle from behind.  Victims also have to prove how badly they were hurt, which medical records will do.  The case may settle outside of court or be resolved through injury litigation, but the medical records can help convince either an insurer or a jury regarding the payment of appropriate crash damages.