Wrong Way Crashes in San Diego County
The United States Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that motor vehicle crashes have been on the decline for the last several years. That, unfortunately, cannot be said for wrong-way driving accidents. Approximately 300 people die from wrong-way crashes every year. In San Diego county last year there were several tragic wrong-way collisions.
To prevent these types of accidents, CalTrans launched a two-year pilot program in San Diego and Sacramento which included technology to alert authorities if a vehicle is traveling in the wrong direction. There is no data available yet on the effectiveness of the program, but if you or someone you know is involved in a wrong-way crash, then here are some things you need to know:
Reporting A Wrong Way Car Accident in San Diego
Dozens of car accidents happen in San Diego every day. How do you know if your wrong-way crash is something you must report? According to California law, you must report any car accident resulting in:
- death or
- property damage over $1,000
How do you report an incident?
You must report such an accident within ten days from the time it happened by submitting a Form SR-1. You can complete the form by yourself or ask your attorney or insurance company to do it. This form serves as the basis for any insurance claim submitted about your accident. It contains all the essential details of your accident such as:
- Your name and address
- Your insurance information
- The name and address of other drivers involved
- The insurance information of the drivers involved
- The time, date and location of the accident
- Any information about property damage
- Any information about the injuries sustained from the accident
Settling the Accident Privately
You can choose to take care of the accident privately, and it will be entirely up to you how it goes. However, if there is property damage exceeding $1,000, injury or death, then you are legally obligated to report it. Failure to do so can result in grave consequences such as hefty fines and the suspension of your driver’s license.
Why Report the Accident
The law only requires you to report the accident if it results in injury, death, or considerable property damage. However, it might be best to report your accident even if it doesn’t fall under those conditions.
Ten days may be too short of a time to assess the damage from the accident. If you think that there may be more people or parties responsible for the accident than what appears at first glance, include that information with your initial report. File a supplemental report upon discovering any further facts or information. Disclosing the accident and reporting it to law enforcement can strengthen your case. If you don’t fully and completely report the accident, the more vulnerable your case could become. Some parties may suddenly “remember” things that never really happened and that can confuse the outcome. Your case report will help support your situation and your compensation claim.
What happens when you discover your injuries later?
Sometimes, it may take time to discover injuries from an accident. If you learn about them later, then you should report them at that time. You should always be checked by a medical doctor if you think you were injured, at the time of the crash or later on. It will be difficult to back up your compensation claim if you don’t have medical records or other documentation to prove that the accident caused your injury. Causation is an essential component of any car accident injury claim. To your benefit, the expiration for your personal injury claim may be extended based on the discovery of your injury. But you need to document and report that injury if any extension is hoped for.
If you want to make sure that your case gets handled as smoothly as possible then hire an attorney. He or she can help you create a solid case to get the compensation you deserve. The payment received by a claim or a case will help cover:
- your medical expenses
- your rehabilitation
- your mental suffering
- any property damages
Personal injury claims may get you enough money to cover your future medical costs and a possible loss or change in employment. If you or someone you know has been seriously injured in a wrong way crash in San Diego, then contact us for a free consultation.
Robert Hamparyan is one of California’s most accomplished personal injury lawyers. Hamparyan Personal Injury Lawyers San Diego was founded so that Robert could bring more of his skill and knowledge to personal injury victims in all types of cases. Robert and his team have dealt with semi truck accidents, wrongful death cases, brain & spine injuries, and many other types of personal injury cases with soaring success.
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