By Anders Blewett
The majority of Montana residents use their car on a daily basis. Most do not give much thought to the actual causes behind car accidents and what times of the year to be particularly wary on the road.
Car accidents are a leading cause of death in the United States. Approximately 10 million Americans are affected by car accidents each year. It is the leading cause of death for American teenagers according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For your safety, it is worth knowing the common causes of car accidents so that you can spot potentially dangerous situations.
There are a few common factors that contribute to car accidents:
1. Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is currently the most common cause of car accidents affecting Americans. The increase in the use of cell phones while driving has been linked to an increase in accidents. Drivers who use hand-held devices are 4 times more likely to have a car accident while drivers who sent text messages are 23 times more likely to have an accident. Other reasons for distractions include: eating, reading, grooming, and talking with other passengers.
Americans are typically very busy people, and driving in excess of the speed limit is the second most common reason for car accidents. According to a statistic provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation, speeding is a contributing factor in about one third of all U.S. car accidents.
3. Drunk Driving
Driving while under the influence of alcohol is one of the most dangerous driving behaviours. Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), a drunk driving awareness group, has stated that in 2010, over 1.41 million Americans were arrested on suspicions of driving while impaired. MADD has also stated that approximately 300,000 occurrences of drunk driving occur each day. According to The Century Council, Montana had 8 alcohol impaired driving deaths per 100,000 people in 2011.
Increase in Montana Car Accidents During the Super Bowl
It is well known that occurrences of drunken driving tend to increase during the Super Bowl. If you have been injured by a drunk driver, it is important that you contact a car accident lawyer in Montana to determine your rights and recourse. The Montana Highway Patrol has been taking precautions to reduce DUIs during holidays and special events, and Super Bowl Sunday is of particular concern to them. The number of arrests made for DUI charges was 137 between December 13, 2013 and January 5, 2014, which is down from 170 in the previous year. In preparation for this Super Bowl Sunday, the Montana Highway Patrol has planned to increase the number of patrols. Americans are becoming more wary on roads during special events, due in part to messages from law enforcement and country wide media campaigns. Montana law enforcement encourages residents to have a designated driver or make plans to stay overnight.
Our Firm’s Experience With Auto Accidents
Our firm has obtained numerous substantial jury verdicts for Montana residents injured in car accidents. Some car accident attorneys in Montana are not prepared to take an insurance company all the way to trial if the insurance company fails to make a fair offer. Before hiring a law firm to handle your case, it is important to investigate the types of jury verdicts the car accident attorneys have obtained in personal injury cases. In Messick/Bowman v. Patrol Helicopters our clients were severely injured while driving a car which collided with a truck that it attempted to pass. The operator of the truck made a left-hand turn without signaling, directly in front of our client’s car. The jury determined that the driver of the truck for Patrol Helicoptors was liable for causing the car accident since he failed to signal prior to turning and awarded $2.5 million in damages to our clients.
In Tucker v. Farmers Insurance our client’s daughter was fatally injured when a vehicle crossed the center line and crashed into our client’s vehicle. After a week-long trial, the jury awarded our clients $516,000 to compensate them for the damages they sustained in this fatal car accident.
Need Experienced Montana Auto Accident Lawyers?
Our firm has decades of experience representing individuals who have been hurt in car accidents in Montana. If you require legal assistance for yourself or a loved one, feel free to get in touch with our Montana car accident attorneys and we can provide a free consultation.