Few details were available about what officials are calling a “terrible accident” that killed one person and sent another one to the hospital.
Perry County Sheriff Joe Engle said the vehicle overturned multiple times, ejecting the driver and the passenger. The driver was pronounced dead at the scene by Perry County Deputy Coroner, Jeff Combs. Officials said the passenger was taken to Hazard ARH with “very serious injuries.”
The victims’ names were not released, but they were both residents of Breathitt County.
Crash vs. Accident
Ships sink, planes wreck, and trains derail. But cars and trucks are involved in accidents. In our online content, we avoid the A-word and usually refer to these incidents as wrecks, collisions, or crashes. In fact, many doctors no longer use the MVA (motor vehicle accident) acronym to describe these incidents. Instead, they refer to them as MVCs (motor vehicle crashes/collisions).
However, most Fayette County jurors still believe that these incidents are accidents. A Lexington personal injury attorney must address this prejudice, like all other prejudices, head-on.
Analogies are very powerful in these situations. For example, if I accidentally knock over my neighbor’s mailbox when I back out of the driveway, I should pay compensation (pay to replace the mailbox). Likewise, if I accidentally hit my neighbor’s car on the freeway, I should pay compensation.
There’s a big difference between a mailbox and a person. Therefore, there’s a big difference between the compensation in these two situations. In a personal injury case, compensation usually includes money for economic losses, such as medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering.
This detail may seem insignificant. But attention to detail matters in these cases. A friend of a friend once thoughtlessly cut off a juror in a parking lot. The jurors ruled for his client, but reduced his client’s damages, so in their words, that lawyer couldn’t afford to buy another Porsche.
Evidence in Car Wreck Claims
Unless victim/plaintiffs have sufficient evidence to support their claims, it doesn’t matter what a lawyer calls the incident. Maximum compensation will be unavailable. Generally, evidence in a car wreck claim consists of the police accident report, medical bills, and witness statements.
Sometimes, this evidence is weak. Medical bills are a good example. Frequently, these documents only include current diagnostic and treatment information, along with current cost information. They indicate nothing about the victim’s pain and suffering level. Additionally, they indicate nothing about probable future medical expenses.
These items are important. A lawyer cannot simply make up a number for pain and suffering compensation. There must be some evidence to support the figure. As for future medical expenses, if the settlement doesn’t cover these costs, the victim could be financially responsible for them.
So, in these situations, Lexington personal injury attorneys often partner with independent doctors. These physicians give their expert opinions about these matters.
Special Injuries in Passenger Injury Claims
All vehicle collision claims involve emotional and legal issues. These issues are even more complex in passenger injury claims.
Except in commercial cases, like Uber and taxi driver claims, injured passengers almost always have a relationship with the at-fault drivers. In many cases, the relationship is quite close. So, these victims, and even these wrongful death survivors, are often reluctant to file legal damage claims. They do not want to blame someone close to them for the wreck, especially since a legal action doesn’t change the fact that the victim was seriously injured.
As mentioned, injury claims are about accepting responsibility for mistakes. This principle applies to everyone in every situation. Additionally, the at-fault driver usually isn’t financially responsible for damages. An insurance company usually writes the check.
Legally, these cases could involve the assumption of the risk defense. This defense, which often comes up in swimming pool drowning and other premises liability claims, applies if the victim:
- Voluntarily assumed
- A known risk.
Most people voluntarily get into most cars and trucks. The second element of this defense is much harder to prove. Unless the at-fault driver was operating very erratically before the wreck, the risk of a collision is a theoretical risk as opposed to a known one.
Injury victims are usually entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer in Lexington, contact the Goode Law Office, PLLC. Attorneys can connect victims with doctors, even if they have no insurance or money.