Car Accident Lawyer in Wheeling, West Virginia
Car accidents can range from stressful inconveniences to extremely devastating life events. If you have been the victim of any type of car accident in the state of West Virginia, you may be entitled to financial compensation to cover things like medical bills, property damage, pain and suffering, and so forth.
Our auto accident attorneys at Kaufman & McPherson Law Firm are here to help you in the aftermath of a crash and ensure that you get the compensation you deserve.
How Can a Wheeling Car Accident Attorney Help?
Hiring a car accident attorney is the best possible thing you can do to help ensure the success of your personal injury claim. A qualified personal injury lawyer will investigate the crash and gather useful evidence to help your claim and win you the settlement that you deserve.
Why Choose Kaufman & McPherson?
At Kaufman & McPherson PLLC, we specialize in car accident personal injury cases in Wheeling. We have taken on insurance companies, vehicle manufacturers, government entities, commercial trucking outfits, and other opponents, no matter how formidable. We have many decades of combined experience as a firm and we are proud of our strong winning record in auto accident cases.
Our attorneys are experts in West Virginia law and experienced in all types of motor vehicle accidents, from car crashes to motorcycle accidents, and tractor-trailer collisions to single-vehicle accidents.
We know that dealing with the aftermath of a car crash can be overwhelming – there are medical bills, insurance companies, property damage, missed work, and other factors to think about. That’s why our attorneys offer real-time assistance and legal advice to help you get through those first traumatic days and weeks after a crash.
Wheeling Auto Accident Statistics
Fortunately, Wheeling has a relatively low number of fatal car crashes each year, with only six occurring between 2013 and 2017. Spring months see the most accidents in Wheeling according to data compiled from 1975 to 2017. Many accidents occur on I-70.
Most Common Crash Types in West Virginia
The most common types of car accidents in West Virginia include head-on collisions, rear-end accidents, T-bone collisions, sideswipe crashes, and chain reaction crashes. Head-on collisions are generally the most deadly since the forces of two vehicles moving in opposite directions compound. However, T-bone crashes can be just as deadly, especially for passengers who were seated on the side of the car that is struck by another vehicle.
Any type of car crash can become a chain reaction crash if it happens on a busy roadway and following drivers are not able to stop in time to avoid hitting the crashed cars, whether they weren’t paying attention or they just couldn’t hit the brakes fast enough. Chain reaction crashes can be very bad in icy conditions especially, and they can involve anywhere between three and hundreds of cars.
The 7 Most Common Causes of Car Accidents in West Virginia
The 7 most common causes of car accidents are:
Speeding doesn’t only mean exceeding the posted speed limit – a driver can be speeding even if they are driving under the posted limit but still too fast for the road conditions. For example, if the road is icy or visibility is drastically reduced, it may not even be safe to go 25 miles per hour.
Plus, the faster a driver is going, the less time they have to react to their surroundings. This reduced reaction time can lead to an accident if there is debris in the road, other drivers behaving unpredictably, or changing environmental conditions like snow and ice.
2. Distracted Driving
There are three types of driving distractions: visual distractions that take your eyes from the road, cognitive distractions that take your mind off the task of driving, and manual distractions that take your hands off the steering wheel. Texting is one of the most egregious distractions since it combines all three types – you take your hand off the wheel to hold the phone, look down to read the message and get distracted by the contents of the message.
3. Alcohol Impairment
Drinking alcohol in excess impairs a driver’s response time, their ability to visually track moving objects, and their steering and braking capability. Obviously, all of these functions are critical for safe driving.
4. Fatigued Driving
Fatigue can lead to the same impairments as drunk driving, rendering it equally dangerous.
5. Confusion or Getting Lost
Drivers who make a navigational or driving error are more likely to become flustered and either make more subsequent errors or attempt to correct their original error in an unsafe manner, which can cause accidents.
6. Defective Car Parts
Sometimes car parts are defective. If the faulty part has not been recalled and replaced, it can cause an accident or increase the severity of an unrelated accident. For instance, if you get into a head-on collision and your seatbelt breaks, you are more likely to get seriously injured.
7. Lack of Maintenance
Unmaintained vehicles are more likely to be involved in accidents. This can be because of a tire blowout, brake pads that are worn too thin, signal lights that are burnt out, or windshield wipers that don’t adequately clear the rain away.
Driver Error and Vehicle Crashes
Six out of the seven most common reasons for crashes can essentially be boiled down to driver error or poor judgment. This means that if you get into a car crash, it will more than likely be pinned to the actions of one or more individuals involved. The at-fault party’s insurance company is therefore responsible for paying out compensation to victims of the crash.
Wheeling Auto Accident Damages
There are all sorts of damages that you may be able to claim if you are the victim of a car accident, such as medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, lost wages and diminished capacity to earn, pain and suffering, and the cost to repair and replace damaged property. If you have lost a loved one in an accident, you may be able to file a wrongful death suit on their behalf and receive damages for loss of companionship, funeral fees, and other end-of-life expenses.
Our attorneys are experienced with investigating car crashes and gathering pertinent evidence that helps build your case and determine who is at fault. If you are ever in a car accident, you can set yourself up for a successful personal injury case by documenting the scene with photos if you are able, getting medical attention immediately, not speaking to any insurance adjusters until you have legal representation, and saving the bills and receipts for everything that is related to the crash.
West Virginia follows comparative negligence law, which means that even if the accident was partially your fault, you can still be compensated for a portion of the damages. For example, if the court determines that you were 25% responsible for the accident, you can still receive 75% of the total damages amount. Don’t let the fear that you are partially responsible for an accident stop you from pursuing a personal injury case after a crash.
Free Legal Advice and Case Evaluation
If you or a loved one has been in a car crash recently, contact us at Kaufman & McPherson today. We will start with a free initial consultation and case evaluation in which we will help you determine if you have a solid case and whether it’s worth your time to pursue it. Our office works on a contingency fee basis, so you will not pay us anything unless we win the case for you.