Speeding car accidents may result in multitudes of severe injuries and even wrongful death. In 2020, 53 fatal speeding car crashes were recorded in Compton alone.
If you are involved in a speed-related car accident in Compton, and you suffer from minor to severe injuries, these steps will help you claim restitution for the damages of the crash:
What Do I Do When I’m Involved in a Speed-Related Accident in Compton?
Step 1: Seek medical attention
Always remember that your health comes first. If you are involved in a high-speed crash, you will likely incur bodily injuries from the accident, such as:
- head and neck injuries,
- bone fractures,
- internal bleeding, or
- internal organ damage.
In such circumstances, you must always seek medical attention immediately. Here’s what you should do:
- Stay calm and refrain from moving if you experience severe physical pain.
- Contact the nearest hospital within Compton.
- Call 911 or the area’s police department. They will help you seek medical assistance if necessary.
If you are involved in a high-speed accident and are unable to move due to serious physical injuries, it is recommended that you prioritize your wellbeing. Law enforcement officers who respond to the scene will assist you in obtaining the other driver’s information and collecting evidence.
Step 2: Document every possible evidence
If you experience a car accident in Compton that resulted in property damages only, it is best to document all possible evidence you can find at the accident scene. This will help you prove that the high-speed crash was due to the other driver’s negligence and file a claim accordingly.
To do this, be mindful of the following pieces of evidence:
The other driver’s information
Exchange information with the other driver and take note of the following:
- their full name,
- their home address,
- their contact information,
- their vehicle’s plate number, and
- their insurance provider.
If there are witnesses at the accident scene, make sure to note their contact details. This will benefit your injury lawyer if they secure statements if you file a claim against the other driver.
Take photos of the property damage from the collision and your bodily injuries, if possible. Your lawyer can deduce the cause of the accident and determine who is liable for the high-speed crash.
Other physical evidence
In a high-speed accident, you will notice specific evidence that will help prove that the driver at fault was traveling over the speed limit, which eventually caused the collision. Document other physical evidence, such as:
- dash cam or CCTV footage,
- skid marks, and
- road debris.
Suppose it was physically impossible for you to gather evidence at the accident scene. In that case, your injury lawyer can examine the nature of your car accident in Compton and gather evidence to support your claim.
Step 3: Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer
The best decision you can make after your car accident in Compton is to hire a personal injury lawyer. They will help you prove and defend your case while you focus on recovering from the physical injuries you incurred in the high-speed crash.
- gather evidence to support your claim;
- prove liability;
- calculate the total damages;
- meet legal requirements and deadlines;
- negotiate for a fair settlement; and
- proceed to a trial if necessary.
A personal injury lawyer has the knowledge, expertise, and experience in dealing with high-speed accidents. So, hiring an attorney will help you win your claim and receive the compensation you deserve.
Can I Pursue A Claim Independently?
It is possible to pursue a claim independently if you have minor property damages. However, you must know that the other party’s insurance provider will try to do everything in their power to either decline your claim or reduce the restitution. Here are some of the most common mistakes you are likely to make when you are pursuing a claim independently:
Common Mistakes When Negotiating for a Fair Settlement Offer
Accept the Initial Offer
Typically, the first settlement offer will always be insufficient for your damage expenses. You must avoid accepting the initial payment and determine the total value of your damages instead.
Aside from the medical costs and property damage expenses, you may consider the following when computing the compensation amount:
- future medical costs,
- lost wages,
- future loss of income, and
- pain and suffering.
Share Unnecessary Information
When you share unnecessary information with the insurance company, they may use this against you. For instance, if you have a pre-existing health condition unrelated to your high-speed accident, they may argue that your injuries were caused by your existing illness and refrain from covering your medical expenses.
Obtain Cost Estimates from the Insurance Provider’s Claim Adjusters
Accepting the cost estimate from the insurance provider’s claim adjusters will limit your compensation value. This is because claim adjusters will always provide a low estimate for the damages of a high-speed crash.
Instead, you should contact other mechanics and compare their cost estimates. This will help you determine how much the vehicle will be repaired or replaced.
In addition, your injury lawyer will help you determine the settlement value based on your medical expenses, property damage reparations, and other related costs.
How Can A Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me?
Insurance companies will likely do their best to reduce your settlement or avoid paying the compensation. This is especially true if you have loopholes in your case, such as those mentioned above.
To avoid losing your case, a personal injury lawyer can do the following to help you retrieve the compensation you deserve:
- Gather sufficient information and proof to justify your claim.
- Prove liability.
- Calculate the total damages.
- Communicate with the insurance provider.
- Meet legal deadlines.
- Defend your case in a trial if necessary.
If you are searching for an experienced personal injury lawyer, Jacoby & Meyers has attorneys with knowledge and expertise in handling high-speed car accidents in Compton. Contact us at 800-922-2222 for a free consultation. We will examine your high-speed accident claim and provide legal options that fit your needs.
How Can Speeding Affect Traffic Accidents?
Did you know that there were more than 11,258 fatalities attributed to speed-related auto collisions in 2020? Unfortunately, speeding poses several dangers to all road users, such as:
- reducing the time needed for a driver to react when they detect an emergency.
- decreasing the ability to stop abruptly if the driver in front hits the brake hastily.
- increasing the risk of a driver’s loss of control.
- intesifying the impact of the crash.
What Constitutes Overspeeding?
Overspeeding is determined when a driver exceeds the standard speed limit within a specific area for more than 60 seconds from the time the vehicle’s speed is measured.
A common violation of speeding is considered an infraction. In an infraction, speeding is considered a minor offense, resulting in minimal penalties. The specific penalty stays on your record for three years in California.
However, there are cases where a speeding infraction turns into a misdemeanor or felony.
Is Speeding a Misdemeanor in California?
If the police officer deems your speeding as reckless driving, your speeding ticket may become a misdemeanor.
According to Vehicle Code 23103, a driver is guilty of reckless driving when they act carelessly, disregarding the safety of other users. If you are charged with a reckless driving violation, the consequences of your offense may be one or all of the following, depending on the severity of your case:
- serving time in a county jail for five to 90 days or
- fine amounting to $145 to $1,000.
Another instance that constitutes a speeding misdemeanor is when a commercial driver travels on a highway at a speed of 15 miles per hour or more.
What Is Felony Speeding in California?
Generally, felony speeding happens when a high-speed crash results in a victim’s serious injuries or death.
However, other circumstances make speeding a felony in California, such as:
- when the authorities determine that you are involved in street racing under Ryan’s Law or Senate Bill 1472.
- when you have other traffic violations committed, such as driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- when the at-fault driver flees the accident scene without notifying the victim and authorities.
When you have a felony speeding violation, you may likely face the following legal penalties:
- A 90-day sentence in jail or longer (depending on the severity of the violation),
- Fines up to $1,000 or more, or
- Vehicular manslaughter charges (if the accident results in injuries or death).