Injuries sustained by survivors of head-on collisions are among the most serious on the road. They can include amputation, paralysis, coma, concussion, permanent loss of one or more senses (e.g., sight or smell), burns, lacerations, and blunt force trauma.
The negligent driver who caused these extensive injuries may be forced to pay for victims’ damages, such as:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages or bonuses
- Physical therapy
- Mental health therapy
- Pain and suffering
In rare cases, courts may assess punitive damages against a defendant in addition to the above. This occurs as a way of sending a message to a person, industry, or organization that certain behaviors will be financially punished by courts.
For example, imagine a new semi-truck line started cutting regulatory corners. They begin telling drivers to speed on highways as much as possible and pass other traffic wherever they can. These incentives might lead to short-term profits as they deliver packages faster than their competitors. However, eventually, a head-on collision at the fault of the truck driver would occur, resulting in extensive injuries. The company may be expected to pay punitive damages for the behaviors they promoted that led to the collision.
Punitive damages are intended by courts to offset any potential economic incentives for abusing the law. Punitive damages are not calculated in conjunction with other damages and typically exceed all other categories combined. A Marion head-on collisions lawyer may argue for punitive damages if it applies to your case.
If you or a loved one was hit head-on by a reckless driver, Bressman Law wants to help. We offer free consultations and can discuss how the law applies to the facts of your case. If we choose to work together, you may be able to claim a financial settlement for your injuries. Call us today at (614) 538-1116.
Why Head-On Collisions Are Especially Tragic
There are myriad reasons why head-on collisions are tragic, no matter where they occur. Physics is essentially working against vehicle occupants in these scenarios.
Velocity on the highway is additive, meaning that head-on collisions result in a total force equal to the two speeds of each car involved. For example, imagine two cars on a city highway are traveling at 55 miles per hour. If one vehicle experiences a mechanical failure that sends it over the freeway median, a head-on collision would be imminent. This collision would be the equivalent of hitting a solid rock wall at 110 miles per hour, double the speed of both vehicles.
The increased physical impact is why head-on collisions are some of the worst accidents we see on the road. In these situations, there is typically nothing that modern technology can do to save a person’s life, as seatbelts and airbags can only do so much to counteract the powerful change of direction.
In other instances where drivers may be acting irresponsibly, a reckless driver might attempt to pass a vehicle on a one-lane highway. Head-on collisions caused by reckless driving may involve road rage, delays in an oncoming-lane pass, speeding, and distraction.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), rural areas also experience more fatal collisions than urban areas. Whether a head-on collision occurs out in the country or on urban streets, there could be many sources leading to a head-on collision, such as:
- Falling asleep at the wheel
- Distracted driving
- Driving under the influence
- Driving too fast in bad visibility
- Road defects
- Auto defects
- Medical problems (e.g., seizure or stroke)
These are just some of the factors that can lead to the heightened risk of a head-on collision. Any of these scenarios may call for a different party to your lawsuit. Your Marion head-on collisions lawyer may begin the process of your claim, as there is a limited time to act. Call Bressman Law today for a free consultation at (614) 538-1116.
For a free legal consultation with a head-on collisions accidents lawyer serving Marion, call (614) 538-1116
Time Is Limited to Pursue Legal Rights
Every U.S. state has a statute of limitations for civil injury liability, and Ohio is no different. According to Ohio Revised Code Section 2305.10, injured parties only have 24 months from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit. After this time elapses, courts might not hear a claim regarding any injury.
However, two years is far too long to wait to pursue your legal rights. A Marion head-on collisions lawyer may be able to act right away to complete urgent tasks, such as:
- Collecting or photographing perishable evidence from the field that the police may have missed
- Managing witness testimony, including any people the police may not have talked to
- Helping ensure that you manage your health records and appointments
- Filing a police report and ensuring it at least reflects your injuries
- Filing other relevant paperwork, such as insurance claims and demand letters
More pressing than the statute of limitations, each of these time-sensitive items is key to building a case. For example, if you wait to visit a hospital about your injuries, it might send the message to the jury that your injuries were not as severe. This delay might also enable defense attorneys to question whether you received your injuries in an unrelated event, and these questions can be among the most difficult to prove and threatening to a case.
If you or a loved one was hurt by a head-on collision in Ohio’s Marion area, Bressman Law may be able to help you recover damages for your injuries and losses. We get to work immediately on behalf of our clients’ legal rights and interests, preserving what evidence exists and building their case.
For more information, call us today at (614) 538-1116.