Chain Reaction Car Accidents
Car accidents frequently involve two vehicles that have collided into one another. Determining fault for a two-car accident should be pretty straightforward, but it rarely is. When three or more vehicles are involved in a crash, it becomes even more complex. Chain reaction car accidents can result in injuries and damages for multiple parties, so it is important to determine who is at-fault, which isn’t always easy.
Car accident lawyers at Chanfrau & Chanfrau work with injury victims in Daytona Beach, FL, Palm Coast, FL, and surrounding areas to gather evidence to demonstrate accident liability and pursue appropriate compensation for injury losses. Here, we go over the process of assigning accident liability in a chain reaction car accident.
What Is a Chain Reaction Car Accident?
A chain reaction car accident starts out as a crash between two vehicles. However, once the first car is struck, the force of the impact sends it into another vehicle. Sometimes a chain reaction car accident ends with three vehicles, but it is possible for the third vehicle to be pushed into another car and so on.
Most often, chain reaction car accidents are the result of a rear end collision. When vehicles are at a stop or reducing their speed, they do not always have a great deal of distance between their vehicle and others, so it is easy for them to get pushed into the vehicle in front of them if they are struck from behind. Although not as common, a chain reaction car accident can also be the result of a wrong-way driver or a pileup caused by poor road conditions.
Injuries in Chain Reaction Car Accidents
Anyone involved in a chain reaction car accident may sustain injuries. But in most cases, the people who sustain the greatest injuries are those involved in the initial collision. When the first vehicle strikes another, the impact is likely to be great. As subsequent vehicles are hit, the energy and the force of the collision should lessen, so that individuals hit later in the chain may not suffer injuries and damages as severe as the initial vehicles.
Who Is At-fault?
Most times, when someone is struck by another vehicle (especially from behind), they assume that person is at-fault for the accident. That is often correct, but not necessarily in a chain reaction accident. Usually, liability for a chain reaction crash falls on the person who caused the first collision.
Chain Reaction Car Accidents and Shared Liability
Although a single driver error can lead to an entire chain reaction of crashes, liability does not always fall on one individual. It is important for accident investigators to study the details of a crash to determine if more than one party shares liability. If another driver was following a vehicle too closely, if someone stopped suddenly without reason, or if someone had faulty brake lights, they may share liability for a chain reaction car accident.
Can I Pursue Compensation if I Am Partially Liable?
The state of Florida follows the rule of comparative fault, which means that even if someone is found partially liable for a car accident, they may still be able to pursue compensation for accident damages. In the case of shared liability, any compensation awarded by a judge or jury would be reduced by the percentage of fault assigned to that driver. For example, if someone is awarded $100,000, but they are 20 percent at-fault for a collision, they would only collect $80,000.
Contact Our Law Firm
Victims of chain reaction car accidents can work with the car accident lawyers at Chanfrau & Chanfrau to determine who is liable for accident damages, and how much compensation they may be due for losses. To discuss your accident with our legal team, contact us online, or call our Daytona Beach law firm at (386) 258-7313.