Investigators say bad weather, particularly blowing snow, contributed to a fifty-car pile-up collision on the Ohio Turnpike.
Emergency responders rushed injured victims to local hospitals and took uninjured participants to a warm place in buses. Ohio State Highway Patrol Sgt. Ryan Purpura urged drivers who must travel in bad weather “to take some precautions: take it slow, be patient, increase your following distance, and always buckle up.”
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine echoed those sentiments. “Please continue to remain home if at all possible and be vigilant with these extremely dangerous road conditions,” he said in a statement.
Kinds of Negligence
Driver error, not an outside force, causes about 98 percent of the vehicle collisions in Ohio. Usually, this error is negligence, or a lack of care. The three types of negligence our Columbus car accident lawyers deal with most frequently are:
Environmental: Media reports often say that blowing snow or other bad weather “caused” a wreck. As mentioned, bad weather almost never causes wrecks. Sudden lightning strikes are about the only exception. The duty of reasonable care requires drivers to slow down and be extra careful if environmental conditions are less than ideal.
Behavioral: Some car crashes happen before the tortfeasor (negligent driver) slides behind the wheel. Common kinds of driver impairment include fatigue, a mild illness that affects concentration, a serious illness that causes blackouts, substance abuse, and distracted driving.
Operational: Speeding is the most common form of operational negligence. Speed increases the risk of a wreck and the force in a collision. Other forms of operational negligence and aggressive driving include ignoring a traffic control device and making an unsafe turn or lane change.
Attorneys file legal claims so these victims can obtain the compensation they need and deserve. Furthermore, and perhaps more importantly, injury claims force tortfeasors (negligent drivers) to accept responsibility for the mistakes they make. In a perfect world, we’d all voluntarily face the music when we make mistakes. But we don’t live in a perfect world.
How Car Crash Investigations Affect Your Case
Compensation and justice are available if a Columbus personal injury lawyer proves negligence by a preponderance of the evidence, or more likely than not. Therefore, evidence is the critical element of an injury claim. The evidence collection process begins with emergency department investigations. Not all these investigations are created equally.
Massive wrecks, like the one in the above story, usually involve multi-agency investigations and large budgets. These investigators have the resources to turn over every stone and closely examine wrecks. The accident reports these investigators generate are therefore excellent starting points for successful civil claims.
Smaller wrecks are a much different story. Usually, a single agency handles the entire matter. Officers who arrive at accident scenes must secure the area and attend to injured victims. They generate reports almost as an afterthought. Furthermore, even the most experienced first responder is by no means an accident reconstruction professional.
Therefore, in many cases, attorneys must look elsewhere for the evidence they need to successfully resolve claims. Electronic evidence, like a vehicle’s Event Data Recorder, is critical in these situations. Most EDRs measure and record information like vehicle speed, steering angle, and brake application.
This evidence is much more compelling and useful than eyewitness data. If the gadget was working right, a computer is never incorrect or biased.
By submitting this form I acknowledge that contacting Oliver Law Office through this website does not create an attorney-client relationship, and any information I send is not protected by attorney-client privilege.