Personal Injury Lawyers • Portland and Waterville, ME

Stopped Vehicles Often Involved In Serious Car Accidents, Study Finds

woman on cell phone beside stopped vehicle with rear damage

Maine car accident lawyers explain why these accidents often happen

Stopped vehicles alongside the road are involved in numerous car accidents, resulting in hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries nationwide each year, according to a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

“This study identifies a part of the road safety equation that doesn’t get much attention, despite the size of the problem,” David Zuby, executive vice president and chief research officer of IIHS, said in a statement.

Each year, 14,371 injuries and 566 fatalities occur on average nationwide due to collisions involving stopped or disabled vehicles, according to the IIHS study. Many of the stopped vehicles include road maintenance vehicles and cars driven by emergency personnel, such as ambulances and police cruisers.

In addition, many of these injuries (more than 20 percent) and fatalities (more than 50 percent) also involve people walking to or from a stopped vehicle. Each year, an estimated 300 pedestrians are killed in such accidents. What’s more, that figure has increased by 25 percent since 2014, according to the IIHS study.

How do stopped vehicle accidents happen?

In many cases, drivers who crash into a stopped vehicle claim they did not see the vehicle, according to the IIHS study. Specifically, the study’s authors wrote that many of these accidents happen “because the stationary vehicle wasn’t conspicuous enough.”

As a result, researchers believe many stopped-vehicle accidents could be prevented if such vehicles were more visible on the road. That’s why researchers recommended that vehicle manufacturers install brighter hazard lights and take other preventative measures.

But poor visibility isn’t the only reason why such accidents happen. Often, driver error plays a role, according to similar, previous studies. Specifically, distracted driving (including texting while driving) and speeding are common causes of collisions involving stopped vehicles.

How much is my injury claim worth?

The financial impact of collisions involving stopped vehicles adds up to more than $8.8 billion per year, according to the IIHS study. That dollar figure includes money for medical bills, replacement income, repairing or replacing a damaged vehicle, as well as “the less easily quantified costs of death or disability.”

However, that's an aggregate figure. There's no formula for the exact value of a particular claim. Depending on the severity of your injury, what type of medical care you receive and the length of your recovery, your claim could be worth thousands of dollars or significantly more. That’s why it’s important to talk with an attorney as soon as possible after your accident.

Why should I hire a lawyer?

An experienced attorney can provide you with an accurate estimate of how much your stopped vehicle injury claim could be worth. Your lawyer can then work with you to build the strongest possible legal case and fight for the financial compensation you rightfully deserve.

The experienced Maine car accident lawyers at Jabar LaLiberty, LLC know how to handle such complex legal cases. That’s because we’ve been working with injury victims and their families for years. When you have our legal team on your side, you can take an aggressive approach after your accident. Instead of insurance companies telling you what to do, you can decide what happens after your accident.

Learn more about how we can help you after your stopped vehicle accident. Contact our law firm and schedule your free consultation with a Maine car accident attorney you can count on after your crash. We have two offices conveniently located in Portland and Waterville, Maine.

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