SaraWilliamsUnderHeader
SaraWilliamsUnderHeader
SaraWilliamsUnderHeader

Did you know that Alabama is one of the most dangerous US states for drivers and their passengers? Over the year, I have helped countless clients who needed to file a personal injury claim after a traffic crash. And I am always ready to help anyone who is a victim of distracted driving or who wants to receive a fair compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit filed as a result of a fatal accident that caused the death of a loved one.

Let me start with a few numbers published by the Alabama Department of Transportation for 2019 (the latest report they have prepared):

  • 159,102 is the number of all motor vehicle crashes across the state
  • 930 people lost their lives in fatal crashes
  • the fatality rate in Alabama remains consistently above the national average since 2015.

Moreover the age groups most prone to be involved in a fatal motor vehicle accident are, in decreasing order:

  • 26-30 – 94 fatalities
  • 21-25 – 88 fatalities
  • 36-40 – 83 fatalities.

Also, while most car crashes (77%) take place in urban areas, most motor vehicle fatalities (59%) occur on rural roads.

How Serious Are These Statistics on Auto Accidents?

Cold numbers are not always helpful, so let me put them into perspective. I will start with the frequency of these devastating occurrences that change lives forever. In 2019, a car accident was reported in Alabama every 3 minutes and 19 seconds. And every 9 hours and 26 minutes one person lost their life in a fatal car crash.

The high percentage of crashes indicates that, for the typical driver in Alabama:

  • the probability of being involved in a traffic accident during their entire lifetime is more than 90%
  • they have more than one in three probabilities of suffering injury or death due to a car crash.

Even though I did not refer to non-fatal crashes so far, it does not mean that they are less serious. Just because someone did not suffer a fatal injury, it does not mean that they will walk away from the crash scene unscathed. For 47,419 people, being an injured driver or passenger in a car crash meant internal injuries, traumatic brain injury or neck injury. Using the same type of frequency scale, it means that every 11 minutes and 5 seconds, someone was injured on the roads of Alabama.

Key Elements that Influence the High Number of Fatalities and Injuries

Why are there so many car accidents? And why do we have such a high percentage of drivers and passengers who lose their lives on the roads of Alabama? There are several factors that influence these tragic outcomes:

Not Wearing a Seatbelt

The latest Drive Safe Alabama Serious Stats report offers us valuable insights on what lies at the heart of these high numbers. First of all, more than half (57%) of car crash fatalities were people not wearing the seatbelt. To show what a difference it makes to your health and life, let me cite the Alabama Department of Public Health, which states that safety devices can reduce the risk of death for front seat occupants by 45% and the risk of moderate to critical injury by 50%

For babies and small children, these percentages are even higher. Statistical data show that adequate restraints (child safety seats) reduce the risk of death by:

  • 71% for infants
  • 54% for toddlers.

Speeding

Driving above the speed limit is the leading cause of fatal crashes. At very high speed, every second of delay in reacting to anything on the road can lead to a fatal crash. Even experienced drivers have difficulties in handling a vehicle at high speed when it comes to avoiding pedestrians, bicyclists or motorcycle riders. If there are potholes or various pieces of debris on the road, it is very easy to lose control over the vehicle and crash it into a tree, bridge or another vehicle.

Distracted Driving

When it comes to the causes of road crashes, distracted driving (especially texting and driving) is one of the leading factors. How dangerous is it to text and drive? According to the report, a texting driver is 23 times more likely to be involved in a traffic accident than a non-texting driver.

Failure to Yield

Failure to yield may not appear to be such a serious driving error, but it is the number one cause of non-fatal accidents in Alabama. Inexperienced drivers, distracted drivers of people suffering from driver fatigue are most likely to fail to yield, causing injuries and property damage.

Alcohol-Impaired Drivers

Driving under influence (DUI) is prohibited by law in all US states. In Alabama, it is illegal to drive a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration in excess of 0.08% or under the influence of drugs. Yet, according to Responsibility.org, in Alabama in 2018 (the latest statistical data available):

  • drunk drivers caused 246 road fatalities
  • 77.3% were repeat offenders with a BAC higher than 0.15%
  • 6,391 drivers were arrested for DUI.

Defective Vehicles

In some cases, the reason for motor vehicle deaths and injuries is not the driver, but the vehicle they are operating. If a part of them, especially the tires or the brakes, is not working properly, passenger vehicles drivers cannot prevent a collision with an object or another vehicle, since their car does not respond properly to their commands. In such a situation, an experienced car accident attorney will seek damages from all the responsible parties, including:

  • the manufacturer of the defective part
  • the dealership
  • the car repair shop.

What to Do If You Were a Victim of a Car Accident

As the accident statistics above indicate, almost anyone may be involved in a motor vehicle crash in Alabama at some point in their life. If this unfortunate occurrence happens, you must know that you have the right to receive compensation from the responsible driver.

The most important thing you must do after being involved in car or motorcycle accidents is to call 9-1-1 and seem emergency medical care. This is extremely important for two reasons:

  • you may have suffered serious injuries which do not show symptoms from the beginning
  • you need to establish a trail of medical records proving that your injuries were caused by the accident.

Next, hire an experienced personal injury attorney to look into your case and prepare your claim or, if necessary, represent you in a civil lawsuit against the responsible party. Remember that you only have a limited time to do so – the statute of limitations for personal injury cases in Alabama is only two (2) years after the date of the car crash.

Under no circumstances should you accept to negotiate on your own with the representative of the responsible party’s insurance provider. There are many reasons against doing it:

  • you do not know the full value of your medical expenses, because it may take weeks or months before you recover
  • you deserve non-economic damages (for pain and suffering, loss of companionship, loss of quality of life) but you do not have the idea how much to ask
  • the insurance adjuster will try to persuade you that you do not have the right to file insurance claims against them, because you were partly at fault for your accident.

Hire An Experienced and Compassionate Accident Lawyer!

I am Sara Williams, Esq., and my mission is to make sure that every motor vehicle victim receives the fair compensation they deserve for their financial losses and non-economic damages. I am an experienced attorney, both during settlement negotiations and in court and I believe that everyone should fulfill their legal duty to compensate the victims of their negligence.

If you need legal representation for a motor vehicle crash claim, contact me now!

Meta description: Discover the most recent and relevant car accident injury statistics in Alabama and why you should hire an experienced personal injury attorney if you were a victim.

When Insurance Companies Know Your Reputation, it Shows in Your Recoveries. 

Over $30 million dollars
in verdicts and settlements recovered for my clients

 

$10.9 Million
in Total Settlements in 2020

 

$1.2 Million
in Referral Fees in 2020

 

2018
Birmingham Business Journal Women to Watch

 

2011-2020
Alabama Super Lawyers Rising Stars
When Insurance Companies Know Your Reputation, it Shows in Your Recoveries.
Over $30 million dollars
in verdicts and settlements recovered for my clients
$10.9 Million
in Total Settlements in 2020
$1.2 Million
in Referral Fees in 2020
2018
Birmingham Business Journal Women to Watch
2011-2020
Alabama Super Lawyers Rising Stars