Determining fault in a car crash can be complex. It depends on the type of accident, as fault may be in dispute between two or more drivers.
For this reason, it can be difficult to differentiate which driver is at fault in the event that the police receive different stories from the people involved in the accident.
Crashes involving multiple vehicles can be more complicated than a standard two-car collision, as several different factors may come into play when determining which driver (or drivers) are at fault.
These types of collisions are known as chain-reaction car crashes because they involve more than two vehicles. They may also take the form of multiple rear-end accidents in quick succession.
In any case, the legal liability for a chain-reaction car crash is more complex than a direct collision involving only two vehicles.
Common causes of a chain-reaction car crash
If you or a family member were involved in a chain-reaction crash, the first thing you should do is identify the at-fault driver or party who caused a chain-reaction car crash in Texas. Often, these events require careful investigation.
Here are the most common causes of chain-reaction accidents:
- Distracted driving
- Using a cell phone while driving
- Drowsy driving
- Being under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Driving the wrong way on a one-way road
- Ignoring signals and right-of-way signs
The causes above occur more frequently on congested roads, as the at-fault driver may not be paying enough attention. This may result in a multi-vehicle crash.
Steps to take after a chain-reaction accident in Texas
Once a collision occurs, it can be difficult to know what to do next. However, you should be sure to take these specific steps after an accident, especially if you plan to file a lawsuit and take your case to court under Texas law.
- Call the paramedics: Multi-vehicle accidents can be fatal, especially on busy Texas roadways. After a crash, be sure to request medical services for any injured driver. Police officers arriving on the scene may also be able to help.
- Gather evidence: Take photos and videos of the scene showing each car involved in the accident and the damage to their vehicles, as well as any debris or road clutter that may have caused the incident.
- Take witness testimonies: If there are bystanders near the road at the time of the collision, talk to them and collect their contact information. Their statement may be useful in court and will help distinguish the actual events of the crash.
- Report the accident to your insurance company: Chain-reaction accidents are dangerous and can cause serious damage to property and your vehicle. After the accident, be sure to notify your insurance company and provide them with any photos, videos or official reports that you may have of the incident.
The most important rule after a collision involving multiple vehicles is to remain calm. You may be concerned about the condition of your car or frustrated with the person who caused the accident, but panicking and getting angry with any of the other drivers can make the situation worse.
How is fault determined in a chain-reaction car crash?
All car accident cases begin with an in-depth investigation into the cause of the accident.
An investigation may involve analyzing police reports, talking to witnesses and returning to the scene of the incident.
The reality is that more complicated car accident cases may require accident reconstruction performed by some accident experts.
In every chain-reaction car crash, the order of impact matters, as one of the objectives of the investigation is to determine which vehicle made the initial impact that triggered the rest of the accident.
Similarly, if a chain-reaction accident is a series of rear-end collisions, the last vehicle that caused the initial crash will most likely be at fault.
Understanding who is at fault isn’t always clear after a Texas chain-reaction accident. Although circumstances can vary, generally there are a few different scenarios for determining fault:
- Breach of duty of care: Drivers have a responsibility to be mindful of their surroundings and other vehicles while on the road. Violating this duty of care, whether by action or inaction, can make a person legally at fault for an accident.
- Causation: If a lawyer can prove that a driver’s direct actions are the cause of the accident, he/she will be found at fault.
- Proximate cause: If the injuries sustained during the accident were preventable or foreseeable, a person may be at fault.
Being at fault means that you’re responsible for paying the damages of others involved in the accident, including the costs of medical bills, injuries, lost wages and more.
Contact an experienced chain-reaction accident attorney
Chain-reaction accidents are challenging, especially if you or someone you love has been injured. If you’re seeking compensation for damages, you need a trusted attorney by your side to ensure your rights are protected.
At the Law Offices of George Salinas, we can help build your chain-reaction accident claim to negotiate the best possible compensation settlement. Legal expenses can be costly, so you won’t pay us unless we win your case.
Get in touch with our team and schedule your free consultation!
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