Wrong-way driving accidents are one of the reasons Virginians file wrongful death lawsuits. Rutter Mills attorneys in Hampton Roads have helped area residents with their auto accident claims since 1959. As a successful law firm, we work on a contingency basis, meaning our clients pay nothing upfront for our legal services.
Virginia Statistics for Wrong Way Car Accidents
Here are a few essential facts about wrong-way car accidents:
- They’re relatively rare. Wrong-way accidents represent only 2.8 percent of highway collisions.
- The outcomes are particularly severe. The Virginia Department of Highways and Transportation found that wrong-way accidents had a fatality rate 31 times greater on the interstate and ten times greater on a four-lane highway than other accidents. The injury rate was 2.3 to 2.9 times worse.
- Hundreds of people die in wrong-way crashes each year. About 360 lives are lost in 260 fatal crashes.
- Wrong way drivers are often drunk. One Virginia study found that 72 percent of wrong-way drivers had been drinking. Most were above the legal limit at the time of the crash.
- Wrong-way drivers are often seniors. Senior citizens over 70 years of age are disproportionately involved in wrong-way accidents. The number of wrong-way drivers over 70 exceeds that of right-way drivers by 2.5 times. Those over 80 are 30 times more likely to travel in the wrong direction.
In addition to intoxication and age, other driver-related factors in wrong-way crashes include distraction, unfamiliarity with the roadways, drowsiness, and mental health problems. Motorists driving recklessly or negligently can be held liable for the victim’s family’s losses.
Sometimes local municipalities can also be held liable for the following:
- Poorly marked ramps
- Poorly placed or maintained signs
- Poor ramp designs
- Lack of visibility due to poor road maintenance
Car accident lawyers will look into local crash reports to see if similar accidents occurred in that location if officials investigated road safety issues and if citizens have filed similar complaints. Often, better signage, lighting, road designs, and surveillance technology can significantly reduce the number of accidents.
Wrong Way Driving Accident Laws in VA
Unlike most states, the Commonwealth of Virginia follows a fault-based system. Injured people can pursue compensation from the “at-fault” party or parties. To sue, the driver must have been 0% at-fault for causing the crash. If a wrong-way driver was breaking the law in some way – such as texting, drinking, speeding, or driving without a valid license – the liability issue should be reasonably straightforward.
Even so, car crash attorneys often have to fight tooth and nail to secure fair compensation for families who have lost loved ones. Insurance companies seek to pay the lowest amount to settle the matter to maintain their profit margins. The at-fault party may also have an insurance policy limit too low to cover the extent of the loss. A lawyer will help you determine who to name in the lawsuit, whether to file a claim under your insurance policy and how much to accept in a settlement.
How Much Money Can Wrong Way Driving Accident LawyersSecure On Your Behalf?
While no result can be guaranteed, it is possible to see a substantial recovery.
Damages in a wrong way accident may include:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
When the accident results in death, additional compensation can be granted for the following:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of income, healthcare, and retirement benefits
- Loss of guidance, companionship, support, and solace
Lawyers for Wrong Way Driving Accidents at Rutter Mills
Lawyers for wrong-way driving accidents can help you put the pieces of your life together. First, our compassionate team will listen to your story. Then, our investigators will determine what happened, who is liable, and how much has been lost. Our expert panel will testify on your behalf to strengthen your case.
We know a fair settlement offer when we see one. We won’t settle for less than what your case is truly worth. Your family deserves ample compensation, so you don’t have to live the rest of your days in the shadow of financial hardship through no fault of your own. Those who drive recklessly need to be held accountable to prevent future tragedies from impacting others.
Contact us to set up a free consultation with a car accident attorney in Virginia. We have two offices in Norfolk and Newport News serving the local communities, as well as Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Hampton, Suffolk, and Portsmouth. Our legal fees come from successful settlements and verdicts, so there is no risk in seeking the best representation.
When you’ve been injured, you’ve got a lot at stake - but so does the insurance company. Walking into the court room with a serious lawyer makes all the difference. Watch our video to learn more about Rutter Mills. Your lawyer matters.
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– Brother Rutter