Articles Posted in Car Accidents

Typically, improper turn accidents occur at an intersection when one person drives into the side of another vehicle. The force of these “T-bone” collisions often leads to serious injury and property damage. If you have suffered injuries in an Indiana improper turn accident, it is important to understand how judges and juries in Indiana determine who is at fault.

For example, as a recent news article reported, an improper turn accident left one person dead and four injured in Pine Township, Indiana. The accident occurred as an antique firetruck was traveling west along the highway. A Toyota Highlander traveling southbound turned left, despite not having the right of way. As the Highlander turned into the firetruck’s lane, it was struck on the driver’s side, causing the Highlander to catch on fire. Four of the five people in the Highlander were transported to the hospital for their injuries. The firetruck driver did not require hospitalization. Sadly, one person in the Highlander died at the scene.

How Do Indiana Courts Determine Fault in Improper Turn Accident Cases?

Plaintiffs bringing a negligence lawsuit after an Indiana improper turn accident must prove the defendant is at fault for their injuries by a preponderance of the evidence. This legal term simply means it is more likely than not that the defendant’s negligence caused the plaintiff’s injuries. In the event of an improper turn accident, determining who is at fault may be more difficult than it seems. Typically, the driver who turns without the right of way is the cause of the accident. At an intersection, drivers may turn when they should have instead yielded to oncoming traffic, stopped at a stop sign, or waited for a green light. At the same time, drivers may not see an oncoming car if the vehicle fails to use headlights at night or approaches at an excessive speed. Consequently, the driver who turns at an intersection may not be 100% at fault for an improper turn accident.

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Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI) often leads to an accident on the road. DUI accidents are often as serious as they are completely preventable. When drivers choose to operate their vehicles under the influence, they often face legal consequences for the harm they caused. These can include both criminal punishment and a civil damages payout to the people who suffered harm from the driver’s actions.

Recently, an article released the details from a crash report in a high-profile Indiana DUI accident. State police received a call just after midnight about an apparent truck accident on the highway. According to witnesses, the truck veered off the road and hit a guardrail, pushing it into the opposite lane. The truck then continued to drive the wrong way before striking a median guardrail and crashing into an embankment. Police then found the truck’s owner, State Representative Jim Lucas, who allegedly smelled of alcohol. He was transported to the hospital for a blood draw. Representative Lucas faces preliminary charges of operating a vehicle while intoxicated, causing endangerment, and leaving the scene of a crash.

How Are Civil and Criminal DUI Cases Different?

When drivers commit a DUI offense, they may face criminal and civil penalties. In a criminal DUI case, the jury must find the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt to convict the defendant of a DUI offense. This standard means that the jury must be nearly certain that the defendant committed the crime. If convicted, the defendant can face jail time or significant fines. However, these penalties often fail to adequately compensate DUI accident victims for their harm, both physical and emotional. In that case, victims can bring a negligence lawsuit against the responsible driver to seek monetary damages for their injuries. Compared to criminal cases, civil cases carry a much lower burden of proof. To hold the defendant liable for damages, the judge or jury only needs to find it more likely than not that the defendant was responsible for the plaintiff’s harm. This standard is called the preponderance of the evidence.

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If you have lost a loved one in a fatal Indiana car accident, you may feel unsure of your next steps. Even though bringing a wrongful death lawsuit is likely the last thing on your mind, it could help address the expenses resulting from the accident, such as medical and funeral costs. Speaking with an Indiana personal injury attorney can allow you to understand your options after a fatal car accident.

As a recent news article tragically reported, one woman died, and two other people were injured following an accident in Laporte County, Indiana. A driver was speeding on I-94 and approached a curve at the same time as another vehicle. The driver veered into the other car’s lane, sideswiping the vehicle and throwing it off the road. As a result, the vehicle he struck crashed through a guardrail down an embankment. Three people were transported to the hospital, where one woman sadly died from her injuries. Following an investigation, local police arrested the driver for driving under the influence and for possession of marijuana.

Can You Bring a Wrongful Death Claim After an Indiana Fatal Accident?

Indiana only permits a wrongful death action from the personal representative of a deceased person’s estate. In practice, the deceased’s spouse and children would receive any damages resulting from the lawsuit as beneficiaries of the deceased’s estate. Additionally, Indiana law allows a party to bring a wrongful death suit up to two years after the fatal accident. After two years have passed, the party often cannot file a wrongful death lawsuit.

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Car accidents can involve a wide range of causes, from distracted driving to inclement weather. If a person chooses to bring a lawsuit after an Indiana car accident, they should be aware of the role fault can play in an ultimate damages award. Additionally, it is important to understand the types of damages available when bringing a negligence lawsuit in Indiana. Speaking with an Indiana personal injury attorney can help accident victims learn more about the types of damages Indiana law recognizes.

As a recent news article reported, a car accident in Columbus, Indiana, left one person dead and another injured. A driver was traveling southbound on the highway when he veered toward the left and struck a vehicle traveling northbound in the opposite lane. The driver, who was not wearing his seatbelt, died at the scene. The other driver was transported to the hospital for life-threatening injuries.

Can You Recover Damages if You Were at Fault in a Car Accident in Indiana?

Indiana allows plaintiffs to recover damages even if they were at fault for the accident. The state follows a system of fault known as modified comparative negligence. Under this scheme, plaintiffs can recover damages as long as they were less than 51% at fault for the accident. If a plaintiff’s proportion of fault is higher than the defendant, the plaintiff cannot recover any damages. Finally, Indiana reduces a plaintiff’s damages award by their proportion of fault for the accident. For example, if a plaintiff is 10% at fault for the accident, a court will reduce their award by 10%.

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Unfortunately, the road can be a dangerous place. Too often, car accidents result in serious injury or death. If you have lost a loved one in a fatal car accident, you may be unsure of your next steps. In addition to the grave emotional harm you have suffered, you may be overwhelmed by the financial consequences of a fatal accident. By filing a wrongful death lawsuit, you may be able to seek monetary compensation for your harm.

A recent Indiana car accident shows just how dangerous the road can be. As a local news article reported, a two-vehicle crash in Johnson County, Indiana, killed both drivers. The accident occurred on U.S. 31 when two vehicles collided in the northbound lane. According to local police, one driver was traveling in the wrong direction and collided head-on with the other vehicle, a Krispy Kreme truck. As a result of the collision, the vehicles caught fire. Both drivers were pronounced dead at the scene.

Can You Sue for Wrongful Death After a Fatal Indiana Accident?

Under Indiana law, a deceased victim’s loved ones can sue after a fatal accident for wrongful death. They can bring a claim as long as the deceased would have been able to sue if they had not died from the accident. The reason for this rule is to ensure that people who act negligently do not escape responsibility just because the deceased cannot personally sue them. When bringing a wrongful death lawsuit in Indiana, a deceased victim’s loved ones can recover damages to compensate for the financial and emotional harm they have suffered. Specifically, by filing a wrongful death claim, they can pursue medical and burial expenses, the deceased’s lost wages, and, for the deceased’s spouse, compensation for the emotional loss of the deceased’s companionship.

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Vehicle accidents can happen in a split second. One minute you may be driving down the road, and the next minute, you may find yourself at the scene of the crash. Accidents happen so quickly that it can be difficult to determine who caused the accident and if there may be more than one party responsible for the accident. In accidents involving multiple vehicles, it can be tricky to determine who is the at-fault driver responsible for the crash. Drivers have a duty of care to ensure that all road users remain safe on the roadways. When this duty of care is not met, it can lead to serious and devastating injuries, or even death, for the parties involved. Multiple vehicles involved in a car accident could be the result of a chain reaction, where one driver hits the vehicle of another driver, which then subsequently causes another accident between another vehicle. These accidents can be scary because they can be beyond the driver’s control after their vehicle is hit, causing one or more subsequent crashes.

According to a recent news report, a 41-year-old woman died following a three-vehicle crash in Cass County, Indiana. Four other victims were injured and taken to local hospitals. The 41-year-old woman stopped in the roadway of M-60 to turn onto Anderson Road when a 34-year-old who was riding with three passengers and traveling southwest crashed into the back of her vehicle. The vehicle of the 34-year-old continued off the roadway and rolled onto its side. The 41-year-old’s vehicle was pushed into the northeast lane of traffic. Unfortunately, a 72-year-old who was driving a semi-truck crashed into the woman’s vehicle. The 41-year-old woman was pronounced dead at the scene, and the 34-year-old driver and three passengers were taken to local hospitals for their injuries.

Determining Fault in Multi-Vehicle Crashes

It is not every day that you see a car going in the wrong direction, and when such is the case, it can lead to dangerous circumstances for all those nearby. Head-on collisions are considered the most harmful events in approximately 14 percent of all U.S. traffic fatalities each year, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Federal Highway Administration.

According to a recent news report, a fatal accident occurred in Northwest Indiana on I-65 about one mile from the exit ramp at U.S. 231. A driver was killed when he was heading northbound in a southbound lane and crashed head-on with another vehicle as he attempted to flee a crash at a convenience store in Crown Point, Indiana, The other driver involved in the head-on collision also was pronounced dead on the scene. The driver of a third vehicle that was hit as a result of the crash suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

It is important to follow roadway signs and markers, as well as local laws, including speed limits, in order to ensure the safety of all drivers and pedestrians. If you are on a road and approach a wrong-way sign, the DOT advises drivers to stop immediately, pull over to the side of the road, and turn around when it is safe to do so. If you are driving and encounter a wrong-way driver, the DOT advises you to use caution, reduce your speed, pull over and call 911 to report. If your loved one has been killed in a head-on collision or wrong-way collision, you may consider filing a wrongful death lawsuit to receive compensation for your loss.

In 2020, 29% of 808 fatal collisions in Indiana involved dangerous driving, a category that includes speeding. 72% of all dangerous driving collisions included speeding as at least one factor, and speeding was involved in 9% of all collisions regardless of the ultimate cause. While speeding instances have decreased from 2016 to 2020, they remain a significant cause for loss of life while driving—and the cause is almost entirely controllable. And preliminary data unfortunately shows that traffic fatalities in Indiana are up year over year.

According to recent reports, a young woman has died at the scene of a 6-car crash in Indiana. A Cadillac SUV was speeding when it rear-ended the GMC SUV driven by the woman, who was stopped at a red light. The GMC was pushed into the rear of a third vehicle and all three cars were shoved through the intersection. Three other cars were involved in secondary crashes stemming from the accident. The woman has been identified as a local middle school teacher and is mourned by her students and fellow faculty, as well as her husband of just four months.

Two others were taken to the hospital with injuries from the accident, and many others involved in the crash suffered pain but did not go to the hospital. One person sustained a minor head injury and is expected to recover. The second person taken to the hospital was trapped in their vehicle unconscious and was taken to the hospital via helicopter for severe head and internal injuries. An investigation is ongoing.

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While many road accidents can result in serious injury, head-on collisions are particularly dangerous. These collisions occur when a driver crosses a dividing line between lanes, veering into oncoming traffic. When the front of two vehicles strike one another, the force of the collision can often result in serious injury or even death.

For example, a recent news article reported that two drivers died following a head-on collision in Fortville, Indiana. According to the article, the driver of one vehicle traveled to the left, crossing the center dividing line between lanes. She then collided with a driver in the opposite lane head-on. Both drivers died from their injuries.

What Are the Causes of a Head-On Collision?

There are many situations on the road that can lead to a head-on collision, but two contributing factors may be distracted driving and speeding. Drivers who do not keep their eyes on the road may veer into another lane and collide head-on with another vehicle. Distracted driving can often take the form of “multi-tasking,” such as talking on the phone, eating, or applying makeup while operating a vehicle. Unfortunately, multi-tasking can cause drivers to pay too little attention to the road in front of them, leading to a tragic and avoidable accident. To avoid a head-on collision, avoid performing activities that distract you from the road.

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From July 2020—July 2021, U.S. drivers reported 2.1 million animal collision insurance claims, according to the Insurance Information Institute. During deer season, which lasts from October through December, a significant increase occurs in the movement of the deer population. As they move to a new location, many deer end up on highways and local roads. Consequently, more car accidents involving deer occur during deer season than any other time of year. In addition to deer-vehicle collisions, multi-vehicle collisions can also result from deer crossing the road. When drivers see a deer approaching the road, their natural instinct may be to swerve out of the way. Unfortunately, swerving into another lane can lead to a collision with another vehicle, which may be fatal.

As a recent news article reported, a multi-vehicle accident involving a deer left three people dead and two injured in St. Joseph County, Indiana. As an SUV traveled westbound at nighttime, the driver struck a deer. To avoid the deer, the SUV driver crossed over the center median of the road. The SUV then collided with a pickup truck driving eastbound. Both the driver and passenger of the SUV died at the scene of the crash, along with the front seat passenger of the pickup truck. The pickup truck driver and back seat passenger suffered serious injuries and were transported to the hospital.

How Do I Avoid Collisions with a Deer or Another Vehicle?

If you see a deer ahead of you on the road, avoid the urge to swerve into the opposite lane. Otherwise, you may be at risk of colliding with another vehicle or losing control of your car. If there is a shoulder on the highway, try to pull over instead. This way, you can avoid hitting the deer without placing yourself and other drivers at risk of injury or death. Additionally, if you notice a deer on the road before you approach, you may have more time to stop and pull over. To spot deer on the road as early as possible, make sure to pay attention to the road and avoid distracted driving. If you are driving at night, use your headlights to ensure you can see the road in front of you.

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