Learn about the most frequent types of car accident injuries and how our New Orleans car crash attorneys may be able to help.
When you are involved in an auto accident, your entire life changes. Most accident victims suffer severe injuries, which require extensive and expensive medical treatment. Many of them are left with permanent bodily injury and disabilities. In most cases, traffic accidents are caused by a negligent driver. Thus, the injured party has the right to seek financial compensation for their economic damages and non-economic damages. If you suffered injuries in a motor vehicle accident, the experienced New Orleans car crash attorneys at Wright & Gray law firm is ready to explain to you your legal rights and help you prepare and negotiate your automobile accident claim.
Apart from medical bills, you will most certainly sustain other types of financial losses that may get you in debt. Leaving aside your pain and worry of remaining with a permanent disability, this is yet another devastating outcome for many accident victims. With the help of accident attorneys with extensive experience, you can focus on your recovery, knowing that you have a strong ally fighting for your rights. Moreover, since our New Orleans car crash attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, you do not have to worry about paying advance fees.
Statistical Data on Motor Vehicle Accidents in Louisiana
Last year saw a worrisome increase in fatal crash victims in our state. According to the Louisiana Department of Transportation & Development, 997 people were killed in car accidents in 2021. This is only a preliminary number, as more data from fatal car accidents have to be processed. Yet, even this incomplete statistical number is significantly higher than the total number of car crash fatalities in the previous year – 828.
The most complete data available is for the year 2020 and it offers detailed information about traffic accidents in New Orleans. Thus, during the year, there were 5,134 serious accidents in our city, resulting in 8,447 injured victims. Also, 51 people lost their lives in 49 fatal crashes.
The facts and data collected by state and local authorities show that Louisiana roads are dangerous places and anyone may become a victim due to a negligent driver.
Most Common Causes of Car Accidents
Let us now look at the reasons for most traffic accidents. In the experience of New Orleans car crash attorneys, these are the most frequent causes of accidents:
Distracted driving is any kind of action that prevents the driver from focusing their entire attention on driving. Texting and driving, fiddling with the entertainment system of the car, talking to passengers in the car, and eating are common examples of driving. You may think that it is not a big issue, but any moment of not paying attention can lead to a fatal accident.
Driving under influence of alcohol is both illegal and dangerous. A drunk driver is an impaired driver who is not fully in control of the vehicle, and may cause a serious crash. Drunk driving accidents claim thousands of lives across the United States each year.
Aggressive driving examples include tailgating, changing lanes frequently, cutting in front of other vehicles, and blocking other cars attempting to pass or change lanes. This type of reckless driving can easily lead to a crash, especially if the aggressive driver is also speeding.
In some cases, the at-fault driver could not prevent the accident, because his brakes or tires failed. In the case of defective vehicles, your New Orleans car crash attorney will identify all the liable parties, such as:
- the manufacturer of the defective part
- the distributor who sold it
- the car repair shop that failed to identify the malfunction and replace the damaged part.
Although in this case the strict liability principle is applicable, it does not mean that your case is easier to win. You are not filing a claim against an individual driver, but against one or several businesses. Experienced personal injury lawyers can win your fair settlement because they know how to collect evidence and what arguments to use during negotiations.
What Are the Most Common Types of Injuries You Can Suffer in a Car Crash?
A traffic accident is an extremely traumatic event for any person. The impact between two or more vehicles can cause severe to catastrophic injuries, such as:
1. Bruising and Contusions
Although you may dismiss the bruises and contusions you suffered in a car crash, they still cause you discomfort and pain. You may have to take pain medication and miss a few days from work after the accident.
However, in some cases, the bruises persist beyond the regular healing period and are accompanied by constant pain, it may be the sign of more serious internal injuries. This is why you need an immediate medical evaluation after the crash. Legal advice best practices say that the sooner you receive medical care, the easier it will be for your lawyer to win a fair settlement in your personal injury claim.
2. Soft Tissue Damage
Soft tissue injuries are damage to the soft tissues of your body such as muscles, ligaments, and tendons. The most common result of these injuries is pain, bruising, and swelling. Here are some examples of soft tissue injuries:
- Sprains and strains
This is the most common type of car crash injury, provoked by the sudden jerking movement of the head forwards and backward. Although it is not a life-threatening injury, it can leave the victim with a wide range of unpleasant symptoms, such as:
- neck pain and stiffness
- tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
- numbness in hands
- blurred vision
- memory problems
Whiplash is diagnosed by various tests, such as X-ray, MRI, or CT scan. This means that the accident victim will accumulate hospital bills, as well as other medical care expenses for treatment and physical therapy to recover.
4. Bone Fractures
A broken bone is a severe injury causing intense pain and the need for a cast. Depending on the severity of the fracture, the patient has to spend between several weeks and over a month in the cast. Some fractures never heal completely, leaving the victim with an impairment, chronic pain, and other recurring health issues.
In some cases, the accident victim may also require surgery to restore the broken bone. This means that the total medical costs will be significantly higher. With the assistance of skilled car wreck lawyers in New Orleans, you can recover these expenses and other losses from the responsible party (or the parties responsible if there are several vehicles involved).
5. Head Injuries
Head injuries are extremely serious. Even a concussion requires medical attention. However, in severe cases, we are talking about skull fractures, which require specialized surgery and treatment and a long-term stay under observation in a hospital.
Many persons are left with long-term symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, or blurry vision. These are amplified by the emotional distress suffered as a result of the accident. Thus, these people may not be able to enjoy life to the fullest and return to their job and their hobbies after the car crash. This is why your attorney will include significant non-economic damages in your accident injury claim.
The most severe type of head injury is a traumatic brain injury. TBI victims may never make a full recovery and remain with serious disabilities. For this type of bodily injury, the associated economic damages are significant, because the person may need nursing care or assistance with activities of daily living for the rest of their life.
6. Internal Organ Damage
Internal organ damage and internal bleeding may not show symptoms immediately. This is why many accident victims walk away from the crash and are taken to the hospital a few days later in a serious condition. This is why New Orleans car crash attorneys will advise someone to accept the ambulance ride to the hospital even if they feel that they are doing better after the first shock.
This decision may save your life and also help your personal injury case. In our legal experience, the insurance company for the driver responsible will most likely challenge your claim. They will state that you cannot prove that you were injured in the respective accident, since you did not go to the hospital immediately. Although experienced New Orleans car crash attorneys can finally prove your case, the claim process will be longer and more complex.
7. Spine Injuries
Spine injuries are life-threatening, especially if the injury is to the upper part of the spine. A significant proportion of persons with spine injuries are left with temporary or permanent paralysis, requiring the use of a wheelchair and modifications to their home.
Experienced New Orleans car crash attorneys will pursue all the involved drivers who share responsibility for your accident injuries and strive to win the largest possible compensation for you, either in settlement negotiations or at the end of a personal injury lawsuit.
How New Orleans Car Crash Attorneys Win Your Case
Any personal injury matter is based on four principles:
- the existence of a duty of care towards the victim
- the breach of duty by the careless driver
- the fact that the breach of duty caused the accident
- the fact that you suffered bodily injury and economic damages as a result of the accident
Also, it is important to remember that the state of Ohio uses the comparative fault principle in personal injury cases. This principle states that each party’s degree of fault for the accident will be calculated, and their actual damages will be reduced by their own percentage of fault. There is an exception to this doctrine – if the other party acted with malicious intent in causing the accident, the victim’s compensation amount shall not be reduced, even if they were partly at fault for the accident.
The role of New Orleans car crash attorneys is to:
1. Determine the Circumstances of the Accident and the Liabilities of the Parties
New Orleans car crash attorneys rely on police reports, eyewitness statements, photos, videos, and even expert witnesses to understand how your accident occurred and who is liable for your injuries and property damages. An experienced attorney will look beyond the crash report and seek any other type of evidence, especially in the case of a hit-and-run accident.
2. Determine the Types of Compensation You Are Entitled to Demand
Injury accident lawyers will tell you that in all cases you may seek economic damages and non-economic damages. Economic damages include all your financial losses and expenses, such as:
- medical care costs
- lost wages
- loss of earning capacity
- rehabilitation, physical therapy, and counseling costs
Non-economic damages compensate you for:
- pain and suffering
- mental anguish
- emotional trauma
- loss of quality of life
- loss of consortium
In special cases, when the fault driver acted with gross negligence or intention to harm, at the end of a personal injury lawsuit the court may award punitive damages (also known as exemplary damages). This type of compensation is meant as a supplementary form of punishment for the at-fault party.
3. Negotiate Your Settlement or Win Your Personal Injury Lawsuit
A New Orleans car crash attorney knows how long to conduct negotiations in civil claims and when it is more beneficial for the client to file a personal injury lawsuit. It is important to file your lawsuit before the expiration of the statute of limitations. This time frame starts on the date of your accident and lasts for only 1 (one) year.
At Wright & Gray, your case will be treated with the utmost professionalism and dedication. If you were injured in a car crash, we are here to help you recover the compensatory amount you are entitled to, so schedule a free case review now: 888-912-4944!