When most people in Bozeman hear about a fatal car accident, they may likely envision high-speed collisions on a road or freeway. However, given the size that most vehicles possess compared to their drivers, it may come as little surprise to learn that many fatal accidents happen while in the perceived safety and security of a driveway. Most would likely attribute such accidents to human error, such as forgetting to ensure that a vehicle’s engine was off or that it was securely elevated before getting underneath it to make repairs. However, recent news shows that to not always be the case.
If you happen to be involved in a car accident involving a drunk driver in Bozeman, some solace may come from seeing that driver face criminal penalties due to his or her reckless decision-making. However, that solace may mean little of your left dealing with inordinate accident expenses. Getting added compensation to cover these costs from the driver may be difficult, especially if he or she is also facing legal troubles. What the about the parties or that establishment that help the driver that hit you to become impaired?
Most on Bozeman may tend to believe that the potential for major injuries only exists with car accidents that occur at high speeds and/or involve extensive damage. If one is involved in a simple “fender-bender,” he or she may think that the only thing to worry about is the minor vehicle damage that may have occurred. In many cases, however, that assumption is proven to be wrong. Whiplash is one of the more common injuries that can occur in a car accident, and those who suffer from it may discover it to be just as debilitating as seemingly more serious injuries.
If you have been in a car accident, you may wonder what the laws state about continuing to use a child safety seat that was involved in the crash. In Montana, there are no laws in place that dictate whether or not you must replace a car seat at any given time prior to its expiration date. However, the law does indicate that all children who are six years old or younger and who weigh less than 60 pounds must be in a car seat or booster seat while a vehicle is in motion.
According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving, in 2015 alone 92 people were killed in drunk driving accidents in Montana. This totals 40.2 percent of all traffic deaths in the state that year. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that in some categories like age and gender, Montana has fatality rates three to four times higher than the national average. Despite these higher than normal numbers, MADD reports that Montana has few laws that are designed to reduce the occurrence of these accidents. Until the state updates its DUI laws, Montana residents may be able to use new technology to stay safer while on the state's roadways.
Car accidents are one of the leading causes of injury in the United States, and Montana residents are constantly affected by this issue. According to the Montana Department of Transportation, 176 people died in fatal collisions in the state in 2014 alone. That same year, anther 791 people sustained serious injuries and 4,528 people were mildly or moderately injured in these accidents. Collisions like these are often avoidable. Some drivers may fail to yield the right of way to other drivers, ignore safety signs and traffic lights or engage in distracting behaviors like texting when they should be paying attention to the roads. All of these actions can lead to devastating accidents that can claim lives or lead to serious injury.
Bozeman, Montana, roads are no strangers to car accidents. Our team at Cok Kinzler PLLP has handled a number of motor vehicle accident lawsuits that cite a range of negligent behaviors. It is important to know the common factors that lead to a car accident so we can prevent crashes from happening.
This year, Car Insurance Comparison conducted a study seeking to determine which state has the worst drivers. Basing their findings on fatal car accident data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, researchers found that Montana ranks at the top of the list for having the most dangerous drivers.
There are several factors that contribute to the safety of roadways in Montana and across the country. Speed limits, road conditions and weather conditions all affect road safety, and can ultimately determine the likelihood that people traveling through that area may become involved in a catastrophic car accident. Since motorists are able to travel at a much higher rate of speed on many Montana roadways, the risk of car accidents, injuries and death increases as well.
In 2012, 205 people were killed in Montana due to a fatal car accident. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the number of traffic fatalities in 2012 was down just slightly from the previous year.