A chain-reaction car accident is a car accident that involves 3 or more cars that collide with each other in a chain of interactions that stem from the first collision of cars. A chain reaction accident is just what it sounds like: a single instance causes a multi-car accident. Pileups on highways are a good example of a chain-reaction accident.
Since chain reaction accidents often involve multiple drives, many of which may have been behaving negligently, it is particularly difficult to determine fault in cases of multi-car accidents. For instance, Driver A may slide into Driver B, who was following too closely and hits C, who was not property signaling and further rear-ends D.
Who Is at Fault?
Determining fault is hard in these cases because it is hard to determine causation from a factual perspective. In some cases, liability may clearly lie with the first driver. For example, say that A was texting while driving when they smashed into B and started the whole chain reaction In that case, A would likely be held entirely liable for the accident.
Most of the time though, the issue won’t be as clear cut as that. Weather conditions, multiple instances of negligence, and other factors can contribute to a car accident.
The general way that cases such as these are handled is based on contributory/comparative negligence rules. Most juries will take a look at all the evidence and assign partial responsibility to all parties involved. The degree of responsibility each person bears is directly proportional to how negligent they were.
If you live in a comparative negligence state each victim’s entitlement to damages will be reduced based on the percentage by which they were responsible for the accident.
How Are These Kinds of Cases Handled?
Whenever you file a claim against a company after a multi-car accident, the insurance companies will start investigating. Insurance companies try to gather as much evidence as they can before determining liability. investigators will account for weather, witnesses, police reports, and more to reconstruct the crash and determine who is at fault.
Insurance companies will try to interpret things in a way that preserves their bottom line, rather than in a way that helps victims.
If you are in a multi-car accident and you want to file a suit, you need to gather enough evidence to make your case. Your actions immediately after an accident can affect whether your later claims are successful/
- Stay in your car and call the police immediately
- Do not say anything implying that you are “fine” or “ok.”
- Don’t refuse medical help. Refusing help can be used to deny your injury claim
- Take photos and videos of the accident scene
- Get other drivers’ contact info
Recently injured in a car accident and sorting through what to do about your personal injury case? Contact Hurst Limontes LLC to get a free consultation today!