Motor Vehicle Accidents
The high incidence of car accidents in the U.S. means that most people will be involved in one at some point in their lives. A car accident can be devastating to you and your entire family. Many victims are left with serious injuries, large medical bills and extensive damage to their car as the result of another person’s negligence. We can help obtain the compensation you need and deserve by taking care of each step of the legal process. We thoroughly research each case and draw on our extensive experience to help us in each car accident lawsuit. Our Connecticut car accident lawyers prepare each case as if it will go to trial even though we are often able to achieve settlements before a lawsuit is even filed.
In Connecticut car accident cases in which another driver is at fault, injured victims may be entitled to monetary compensation to help pay for medical bills, lost wages, damaged property and pain and suffering. If you have been injured or lost a loved one in a car accident, you may need the help of the experienced car accident attorneys at Ouellette, Deganis, Gallagher, & Grippe, LLC.
Our firm handles personal injury claims throughout the State of Connecticut including the following accident cases.
Rear End Collision
A rear-end collision occurs when one automobile is driven into the car in front of it. Usually, this type of auto accident is caused when the driver of the rear vehicle is traveling too closely to the rear of the vehicle in front of it or the driver of the rear vehicle is not paying attention. In most rear end collisions the driver of the rear vehicle is found to be at fault for the accident.
Injuries sustained by occupants of the front vehicle are usually much more serious than those of the rear vehicle because they are struck from behind unexpectedly and unable to brace for the accident.
Head-on collisions can be very serious accidents causing significant injuries and damages. Head on collisions usually occur when one of the vehicles cross the center line and enters the opposite lane of travel. These accidents can be caused by one of the driver’s not paying attention, improperly trying to pass another vehicle, traveling too fast, losing control, due to drug or alcohol use.
T-Bone or side impact
Side impact collisions usually occur at intersections and can be very serious accidents. A T-Bone collision occurs when the side of an automobile is hit by the front of another automobile directly in the side. T-Bone collisions can be caused by a driver failing to stop a stop light or stop sign.
Alcohol use by an operator of a vehicle increases the risk for an accident. Every year, thousands of accidents can be attributed to the consumption of alcohol. Alcohol can impair coordination and the ability to make decisions when driving. Drinking and driving increases the chances of causing serious accidents which can lead to other people being injured or even killed.
A motorcycle accident will tend to result in more serious injuries than a regular auto accident because unlike a regular passenger car, there is no compartment to protect the rider or bike passenger. Although some motorcycle accidents are caused by the motorcycle operator’s error, others are caused by the negligence of other operators. If you have been injured in a negligently caused motorcycle accident, you should contact our office to discuss the facts with one of our Connecticut motorcycle accident attorneys.
More than a hundred thousand pedestrians are injured in motor vehicle accidents each year in the United States. Most injuries are caused by negligent drivers. Pedestrian accidents can be caused by a driver not paying attention, traveling too fast, making an improper turn or driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Unfortunately, pedestrians involved in accidents often suffer serious and catastrophic injuries.
Much like pedestrians, bicyclists are too often ignored by motor vehicle operators, and sustain injury in auto accidents . Bicyclists involved in accidents can suffer severe and sometimes catastrophic injuries. With more people riding bicycles the number of bicycle accidents is likely to increase.
Some causes for these types of car crashes include the following:
- Driving too slow
- Reckless driving
- Drugs and/or alcohol
- Failure to obey traffic signs
- Falling asleep at the wheel
- Failure to utilize turn signals
- Aggressive driving
- Distracted Driving- Drivers who are changing the radio station, talking on their cell phones, talking to a passenger, texting or using an app on their mobile device, may take their eyes off the road or fail to concentrate sufficiently on operating the car. They are all more likely to get into a car accident than those who keep their attention on the road. Using a mobile device without hands free device is often a violation of Connecticut law.
- Excessive speed – Speed limits are the maximum speed at which it is safe for a car to drive on a particular stretch of road. They are set for a reason, and drivers who ignore these rules put themselves and others at risk. At times travel at speeds within the speed limit may also be unsafe if the road or weather conditions require slower speeds for safe operation.
Hit and Run Accidents
Getting into an auto accident is bad enough, but when someone is hit by an uninsured motorist, there can be undue financial burdens to bear. Sometimes an uninsured motorist will leave the scene of an accident, thus committing yet another violation of state laws. If you are injured as the result of a hit and run driver, our attorneys can determine if they can bring an uninsured claim for you.
Connecticut requires an owner of an automobile to carry a minimum of $20,000 per person and 40,000 per accident of liability insurance. Unfortunately not all drivers follow this law and continue to drive vehicles without insurance. Even if a driver follows the law and obtains the minimum coverage, often this is not enough to cover all of the damages, medical bills and expenses in an automobile accident. . If a driver causes more damage than they have insurance, they are called “under-insured”. Our attorneys can determine if this situation exists and can assist you through this process. Like many areas of our law, this area of the law is often convoluted and has been said to be a “a trap of the unwary.” Our attorneys are experienced in bringing uninsured and under-insured claims and we will work to obtain any benefits available to you. Additionally, we will conduct an investigation to determine if there is any additional insurance that may provide coverage for your injuries and damages.
If you’ve been involved in an accident, it is crucial that you do the right thing…
WHAT TO DO AFTER AN AUTO ACCIDENT
- Immediately call 911 for medical help if someone is injured. Medical care within the first hour after an injury is critical
- Call the police. They will document the accident and gather facts for legal purposes. If you don’t call the police, it is your word against the other person’s.
- Report the accident to your insurance agent as soon as possible.
- Exchange information with the other parties involved. Get the names, addresses, and phone numbers. If it is a car accident, get the plate number, make, model and year of the car, driver’s license number and insurance information and car registration number.
- Get the name, address and phone numbers of any witnesses.
- Keep a disposable camera handy, or use your cell phone camera to take photos of the accident, damage to the cars, and the area around the accident.
- Collect any physical evidence that could have caused the accident.
- Gather details from the accident: draw a diagram of the accident, note the date and time, weather conditions, location of the accident, including any landmarks.
- Call an attorney. Our office can send out an investigator, photographer, or an accident reconstruction expert, if necessary.
If you’ve been involved in an accident, don’t make the following mistakes:
- Do not panic. Remain calm and call for help.
- Do not leave the scene of the accident. Connecticut law requires you to remain at the scene whenever there is physical injury or property damage.
- Do not discuss the accident with anyone or blame anyone, including you.
- Do not forget to document and take pictures of all damages, especially your vehicle.
- Do not wait to get legal advice. The longer you wait, the harder it may be to prove your case.
- Do not speak to anybody from the at-fault person’s insurance company before consulting a lawyer.
- If you give a statement, it may be used against you in the future.
- Do not give a written or recorded statement to anyone before speaking with your lawyer!
- Do not sign any papers give to you by an insurance company or agree to a settlement of your case until you get legal advice.
- Contact the Connecticut personal injury attorneys at Ouellette, Deganis, Gallagher, & Grippe LLC immediately following an accident. We can guide you through the process and protect your rights.