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Ways to Reduce the Impact of a Car Accident

 

If you are in a crash in Missouri, there may be ways to reduce the impact of a car accident. Attorneys from Buchanan, Williams & O’Brien offer resources. Call now!

We are personal injury experts who have achieved results for our clients in Missouri for over 40 years.

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How to Minimize the Effects of a Car Crash

Car accidents are a significant cause of death in the US. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, an estimated 42,915 people died in fatal crashes in 2021, with even more people sustaining severe injuries in varying degrees.

While some vehicle accidents are caused by natural disasters and other unforeseen circumstances, the majority of motor vehicle crashes can be traced to reckless or distracted driving, even though there are traffic laws that prohibit such acts.

The impact of such accidents is overwhelming. It often goes beyond physical injuries and may extend to the victim’s finances. Sadly anyone could be a victim at any time. But while it is impossible to control the actions of other road users and compel them to drive carefully, there are ways to protect yourself and minimize the extent to which a car accident can affect your life; if you’re ever involved in one.

The information provided below can help you safeguard your welfare before an accident and help you decide on the next steps as a recent accident victim. Keep reading to learn more.

 

Proactive Ways to Minimize the Impact of Car Accidents

 

Before you’re ever involved in an accident, you can take steps to protect your body from common car accident injuries and your ability to get compensation if an accident occurs. The steps include the following:

 

Buckle Up

Always use your seatbelt when in the car and ensure everyone else around you does the same. Wearing seat belts reduces the impact of an accident by holding you to your seat so that you are not thrown around in the event of a high-impact crash. Babies and young children should also be in age-appropriate car seats and strapped in correctly. Follow the manufacturer’s strapping instructions if your child still needs a car seat.

Maintain Your Vehicle

Regular vehicle maintenance is essential for people who own cars. The effects of car crashes are often worsened by faulty parts like a bad car engine or steering wheel, flat or unequal tires, worn-out brake pads, and so on. Some of these poorly maintained vehicle parts are even the cause of accidents sometimes. So if your car hasn’t been serviced in a while, schedule an appointment with your mechanic as soon as possible.

Maintain the Speed Limit

Driving within the legal speed limit is one way to avoid or reduce the impact of an accident. Even if your car’s brakes fail or another vehicle runs into you, it is easier to maneuver your vehicle to a safe stop if you aren’t speeding.

The general speed limit  under Missouri law is as follows:

  • Rural interstates and freeways – seventy miles per hour
  • Rural expressways – sixty-five miles per hour
  • Interstate highways, freeways, or expressways within urban areas of – sixty miles per hour
  • All other roads and highways outside urban areas and not provided for elsewhere – sixty miles per hour.

These limits may be modified in different locations if the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission recommends them. You’ll need to confirm the specific speed limits from your local transportation authority to ensure you stay within the law. If you drive beyond the approved limit in your county, you could face misdemeanor charges in addition to the dangers you’ve exposed yourself to.

 

Do Not Drink and Drive

Getting behind the wheel of a vehicle while intoxicated is never a good idea. Apart from causing an accident, you could be arrested and convicted for drunk driving and other DUI-related offenses.

 

Give Reasonable Following Distance

Rear-end collisions are one of the more common forms of car accidents. They usually happen when a vehicle stops suddenly, and the one behind is too close to brake without hitting the car. In order to avoid such incidents, Missouri law requires drivers to follow vehicles at a “reasonably safe and prudent” distance. The unwritten rule in this regard is to leave one car length in between you and the car in front of you, depending on how fast you’re going. The faster you drive, the more distance you should leave between you and the next car.

 

Keep Your Vehicle Insurance Up to Date

Drivers in Missouri are required by law to insure their vehicles with coverage for injuries they may cause to third parties or other drivers. Failure to maintain an appropriate auto insurance policy or pay your insurance premium could lead to several consequences, including the following:

  • You could lose your driver’s license.
  • Your vehicle registration might be suspended.
  • If you’re the victim of a car accident, you might be unable to claim compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance company since you’re uninsured.

If you’re unable to claim compensation as an accident victim, the financial impact could be too much for you to bear. You may need to pay for your medical expenses and car repairs by yourself, which could mess up your finances. Ensure you have the appropriate car insurance on all your vehicles to avoid such issues.

Managing the Effects of Car Accidents After They Occur

 

If you’ve been involved in a car accident, the steps below can help you safeguard your health and minimize your losses.

 

Get Help ASAP

It is important that you seek medical attention after an accident, even if you seem unhurt. A doctor’s visit can reveal some possible hidden or late-onset symptoms. Also, going to the hospital enables you to have documentation of the physical effects of the accident on you. This can be of help when making an insurance claim.

 

Report to the Authorities

It is essential to report car accidents to the authorities immediately after they occur and obtain a copy of the formal police report if possible. The police report can help prove your claim when seeking compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance company.

If you or anyone else is severely injured and requires urgent medical treatment, that should be a priority. You can report to the police when your condition has improved or get someone to do it for you.

Remember to collect the other driver’s contact and insurance information. You might need it at the police station and for your insurance claim.

 

Contact a Local Personal Injury Lawyer

It is important to consult Missouri accident attorneys after a car accident, especially when you intend to claim compensation. Your lawyer can help with the compensation process and ensure the insurance company pays you fairly. Even if the insurance company offers you an out-of-court settlement, your lawyer can assess their terms and determine whether they serve your interests.

When working with an attorney, you can rest easy knowing that your compensation claim is being handled professionally. This way, you can minimize the impacts of the accident on your finances and take good care of your health, knowing that the insurance company will take care of the medical expenses.

 

Need a Personal Injury Attorney? We Can Help at Buchanan, Williams & O’Brien, PC

Our law firm is committed to standing by our clients who intend to claim compensation after an accident or whose claims have been denied by the insurance company and helping them get the amount of money they deserve. 

Contact us if you have questions about your case. We’d gladly represent you throughout the process and guide you toward a positive outcome.

We can help! FREE Injury and Work Comp Consultations.

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