Most people know when they have been in an auto accident they should contact personal injury lawyers to help them with their injury claim. Many people do not know that typically that same lawyer can help with other situations involving vehicles.
An auto law attorney can be your best advocate not only after a car accident but in other cases that involve vehicles. For example, in the case of manufacturers defects that cause an accident. Not every case that an auto law attorney takes on is within the realm of typical.
Cause and Effect
Vehicles accidents are typically pretty straight forward occurrences. There is a cause for the accident and then there are the effects of the accident. For example, you are driving along, you come to an intersection, and a driver blows right through a stop sign. That is the cause of the accident.
The injury and the property damage that you suffer is the effect of the accident, but what happens, when it is not another driver that causes the accident, but instead it is something in the roadway, or your vehicle simply does not respond? An auto law attorney is the professional that will help to establish the cause of the accident.
Not every auto collision is cut and dry when it comes to cause and effect. Somethings the situation that causes the accident can be unusual. Those types of accidents are hard to prove, and absolutely need the help of an accident lawyer with experience.
Strange Situations Involving Vehicle Accidents
A well-seasoned auto law attorney has seen a lot of strange situations that in some cases even defy physics when it comes to how an auto collision occurs, the damages that are sustained, and unfortunately the personal injuries that happen.
Insurance companies like cause and effect provability before they payout a claim. They want proof of the accident, they like to have someone to blame for the accident, and they like when things are nice and tidy. In cases of strange auto accidents that require auto repairs, you must have an attorney with experience in the weird ways accidents can happen.
Insurance companies put a lot of work into safety research, and risk assessment. They know that some cars like sports cars are more likely to get into accidents than other types of cars, not because of the cars, but because of the personality of the driver that is associated with driving that car.
Auto insurance companies do speed tests, collision tests, and more to get a better understanding of the level of damage that is associate with going a certain speed. They use dummy drivers that are outfitted with electronics to measure the effect of an impact on a human body.
They collect all this information to be able to determine how much a claim should payout under normal circumstances. When the strange happens, frankly, the insurance companies do not know how to respond.
Let’s look at some of the strange things that can happen when you are driving along, that has already happened to other people. These stories were ripped from the headlines:
- A woman winds up at the front of the line at a DMV office. Doesn’t sound too strange that someone finally made it to the front of the line at DMV? Unless of course, you consider she was in her car when she did it. A woman drove through the window at the DMV before her vehicle stopped right at the desk. She told the police that as she tried to pull into a parking spot near the front door her accelerator pedal took on a life of its own. After many months of investigation and fighting with the insurance company her auto law attorney was able to prove a manufacturer defect.
- A gentleman was driving along in his brand new SUV when suddenly it felt like the earth had opened up and swallowed the front end of his vehicle. Luckily according to his car accident law attorney his injuries were minimal, but his vehicle was beyond repair. A smallish sinkhole opened and he drove right into it.
- A vehicle on I-95 went up in flames. Motorists pulled to the side of the road to offer assistance and 89-year-old Joe McNamara stood on the side of the road in shock as his vehicle was consumed in flames.
There are countless cases where through no fault of their own drivers have been injured, suffered property damage, and had a fight ahead of them with the insurance companies, and vehicle manufacturers.
One client was trapped in their vehicle for hours waiting for a car locksmith to get them out of their car in the driveway because of a manufacturer defect. While they were not involved in an accident, the driver did say that they contemplated kicking out their windshield.
What if the driver did kick out their windshield who would cover the cost of windshield replacement on this high-end vehicle? An auto law attorney can answer that question and others regarding manufacturer defects.
Why Do You Not Hear More About Risky Defects?
There is always a lot of talk about what causes car accidents. There are lists, and studies that are done to help people realize what risky behaviors can cause auto accidents, but rarely do you find a list of manufacturer defects or roadway hazards that cause accidents.
The top three reasons for car accidents are distracted driving, drunk driving, and driver error, however, many, many car accidents are caused by a manufacturer defect. It is estimated that about 30,000 people every year are injured or die because of a manufacturer defect in a motor vehicle.
An auto law attorney can help if you suspect that your car accident was relative to the manufacture of your car. Personal injury lawyers are the one group that knows more about manufacturer defects, and other strange incidents of car accidents and they are the groups that fight for consumer rights, and personal injury claims protections.
What You Should Know About Manufacturer Defects And the Law
You may hear about recall announcements every once in a while, but you should know that there are a lot of bad things that happen before that notice every goes out. Recalls for manufacturer defects are a process, a process that is not necessarily fair to consumers that are at risk.
On average about 10 million cars have been recalled. Getting a vehicle recalled does not happen after one accident, or even after two accidents, or even after 100 accidents. The NHTSA is the governing body that investigates manufacturer defect complaints. The process can take up to 16 months or more to complete.
There is no specific number of complaints that have to be filed to open an investigation. The NHTSA uses a formula that compares the number of complaints to the number of vehicles manufactured. For example, if 500 owners have filed complaints about a faulty braking system but there were 5 million cars manufactured, that investigation may take some time to get underway, even if there have been car accidents linked to the problem. In other words, if only a small percentage of vehicles are showing signs of a manufactured defective while it may have affected you, it is not considered to be a huge problem by the safety agency that is supposed to be protecting the consumer.
An auto law attorney, is often tasked with taking the helm in cases where it is a defect that causes a car accident. They will fight for the consumer’s rights with both the insurance company and the car manufacturer. They are also the people that often force the investigations into defects.
What do you do if you suspect that your accident was a direct result of a manufacturer’s defect? You start by contacting an automobile accidents attorney that will listen to your claim. An auto law attorney that is familiar with the strange reasons accidents occur from manufacturer defects, will have a network of investigators, and know-how to determine if your vehicle was at fault in your accident.
Typically it is a tough fight to get a manufacturer to take responsibility for their mistakes. Consider the amount of money they lose when a recall is forced and they have to make repairs, or repair design flaws. The cost can be astronomical.
The NHTSA is tasked with ensuring safety on the highways but the process of getting vehicles off the road that are unsafe can take a long time. During that time, owners, are usually not aware that there is an investigation happening. They continue to drive their vehicles, and put themselves, their passengers, and other drivers at risk. Even if there is a current investigation into a safety malfunction, typically that news does not trickle down to the insurance companies.
When an accident occurs and the driver has what sounds to be an outlandish excuse for the accident, it can red-flag their claim with the insurance company, and make it very difficult to navigate the claim. Does that sound fair? No, it does not, but it happens all the time.
An auto law attorney is the best solution if you find yourself in a situation where you know that your vehicle is defective, even when no one else seems to recognize that. Protecting yourself and your rights have to be a priority. An auto law attorney is one of the few people that will know what to do in this situation.
Auto defects are a big issue when it comes to vehicle accidents, but it is not the only issue that can cause some strange accidents to occur. An auto law attorney is the professional that can help you get through even the strangest accident situations.
While auto defects are a tremendous issue, road hazards or poor road management is another problem that no one is talking about. They cause about 22000 injuries each year. What happens when your accident is due to a road hazard?
Getting a municipality to take responsibility for an accident that was caused by a road hazard can be very difficult. An auto law attorney can help you to protect your rights when your car accident has been caused by a road hazard that was caused by poor maintenance.
Some examples of road hazards that should be addressed by municipalities are:
- Pot holes in the asphalt. Deep holes and cracks can disrupt how you are able to drive on the road.
- Signage. There have been cases where signage has fallen and caused road hazards.
- Other structures on the road. Delineators, barriers, and other road structures that are crumbling or in disrepair can become a road hazard.
Road hazards can easily disrupt your ability to control your vehicle and avoid other cars. When there is an accident that occurs because of poor road maintenance one of the best things you can do for your claim is to connect with an auto law attorney.
You may have a fight ahead of you and you will need the expertise of an auto law attorney that has fought these types of fights before. Negligence on the part of a municipality is a real cause of accidents but typically the governing bodies do not like to take responsibility for these situations.
Unfortunately, if you have been in an accident that was caused by unusual circumstances you may have a problem convincing the authorities and the insurance company that you were not at fault. Often drivers are looked at as being dishonest when they blame their car for an accident or road hazard.
If you have been in a vehicle accident that was caused by a manufacturer defect or a road hazard, or some other strange out of the norm incident, the best way to protect yourself is to hire an auto law attorney that can fight for your rights.
When your accident is outside the norm it takes expertise to prove the cause of the accident, get your claim through, and ensure that your rights are being protected. All of the entities like car manufacturers and municipalities, have teams of lawyers to defend their product or their negligence. You need to be sure that you have someone on your side to fight back.