Car accidents are unfortunately, a common occurrence in the United States. The number of cars on the road is growing at a significant rate and as new distractions are introduced daily, it can lead to a dangerous situation. Car accident severity can range from a minor fender bender to a severe multi-car incident with exceedingly high damages.
When you factor in the property damages, medical bills, lost wages, and insurance costs that are often a part of car accidents; they have a significant impact on both the parties involved and the economy.
Rate of Car Accidents
The United States roadways are a crucial part of our transportation system. Approximately 95% of Americans own a car. About 85% of U.S. residents rely on personal transportation to get to and from work. Many households have more than car. With the majority of the country owning a car and using it on a regular basis, we also see a shocking number of car accidents.
Research estimates that there are approximately six million auto accidents every year. Even more shocking is the fact that about 90 people die every day from a car accident. An additional two million people are injured and two million are left with permanent life-changing injuries.
Cause of Car Accidents
Car crashes have been around for as long as cars have. However, the primary cause of car accidents has changed over the years. Drinking and driving still remains one of the most common causes of car accidents on today’s roads. Ignoring local road laws and signs can also contribute to dangerous driving including speeding, running through red lights, and reckless driving.
Distracted driving is a newer car accident cause that has become a real problem, contributing to the overall car accident costs. As technology evolves, distracted driving rates increase. Even with campaigns against distracted driving, approximately one in five car accidents today involve distracted driving of some type. Distracted driving takes the attention away from the driver, resulting in an increased chance of being in a car accident and often resulting in more severe of damages. Additionally, a high percentage of auto accidents fall between ages 16 and 19. Pairing driver inexperience with distracted driving can result in a potentially fatal outcome.
The True Cost of Car Accidents
When calculating the true cost of auto accidents, it is important to include all of the costs associated. A individual that is involved in a minor car accident might only pay a few hundred dollars out of pocket. They will likely submit a claim to their auto insurance to cover the cost to repair. it is likely that the insurance company will pay much more than a few hundred dollars. Additionally, if they suffer any injuries that require medical care, their health insurance will also pay.
A major auto accident will cost much more than that. Major auto accidents include things like extensive medical costs, time off work, diminished earning capacity, vehicle damages, disability, and in some cases; pain and suffering. In total, it is estimated that the annual cost of car accidents is $230.6 billion.
When Legal Representation is Needed
Minor fender benders rarely require lawsuits or legal representation. They consist of each party alerting their insurance company, filing a claim, and then arranging for any necessary repairs. However, the car accidents that result in extensive costs may require the representation of a car accident lawyer.
Most insurance companies have limits on how much they will pay. Because a severe car accident can quickly exceed those limits, it may be necessary to seek compensation from the responsible party through a third-party lawsuit. Discussing your auto accident case with a lawyer will help you determine the best legal steps.
Unfortunately, some car crashes can also include disabling injuries or fatalities. A fatal crash has not only a significant impact on the economy, but on the victim’s family and friends. There may be concerns around the insurance policy and what it covers. Motor vehicle accidents with severe outcomes will often require the representation of personal injury attorneys.
The true cost of car accidents can be difficult to calculate. Auto accidents are costly leaving the involved parties with medical expenses, bodily injuries, and lasting injuries. If you are left with complicated insurance claims or expensive damages, contact Peter Johnson today at (602) 910-4952 .