Levine Law’s collection of Motor Vehicle Accident articles compiles news stories that detail how traffic signs, automobile-related accidents and fatalities that have impacted drivers in the state of Wisconsin.
Right-of-Way Often Central Factor in Motor Vehicle Accidents
Who knows whether a Wisconsin driver’s age had anything to do with a recent collision. What does appear to have been a factor is the driver’s apparent failure to yield to another vehicle at the appropriate time. The vehicle, occupied by a 70-year-old driver and two passengers, collided with a deputy’s squad car. Motor vehicle accidents involving failure to yield often result in serious injuries or death; this one resulted in both.
The accident occurred at approximately 8 a.m. on a recent Friday. The driver believed responsible was reportedly at a stop sign, headed south, moments before the accident took place. A 26-year veteran of the local police department was headed west through the intersection when the first vehicle smashed into her vehicle. Officials say the squad car had the right of way.
A 94-year-old woman was in the first vehicle, along with a teenager and a 76-year-old man. The elderly woman did not survive her injuries. Several others did survive but suffered injuries that were not considered life-threatening.
When motor vehicle accidents occur at intersections, it often takes investigators some time to determine exactly what occurred and who may have been responsible. If a fatality occurs, immediate family members of the deceased may wish to pursue justice on behalf of their loved one by filing a wrongful death claim in a civil court. Many Wisconsin residents who file such claims reach out for support from experienced personal injury attorneys before heading to court. To prevail, it will be necessary to submit appropriate evidence documenting that the named defendant was negligent in a manner that caused or materially contributed to the fatal accident.
Source: USA Today, “94-year-old person dies in Black Creek car crash“, Madeleine Behr, Aug. 25, 2017
Intersections Risky Areas Re: Wisconsin Motor Vehicle Accidents
Navigating crossroads in Wisconsin can be quite challenging, especially if more than one other vehicle is preparing to enter the roadway at the same time. While safety in most situations like this hinges upon each driver adhering to traffic regulations, motor vehicle accidents can occur if even one motorist is negligent. For instance, when an intersection is secured with traffic lights, risk for collision increases if someone fails to stop at a red light.
That appears to be what happened in a recent multiple vehicle crash. Investigators say the light was red when a motorist sped right through it, crashing into several other cars that had already entered the crossroads. A total of four other vehicles sustained substantial damages in the sudden collision.
Several people had to be rushed to the hospital in the near aftermath of the crash, including the driver deemed responsible. Thankfully, there were no life-threatening injuries involved. Officials later provided another detail regarding the incident that may explain why it happened. The driver who allegedly blew through a red light is said to have been intoxicated at the time.
Police say the 28-year-old man was cited for operating a motor vehicle without a valid driver’s license. Wisconsin motor vehicle accidents like this one often lead to criminal charges above and beyond any personal injury claims recovering victims may choose to file in court. Evidence that citations were issued or criminal convictions obtained can be used to help substantiate personal injury claims. Anyone considering filing such a claim may first want to discuss his or her situation with an experienced personal injury attorney.
Wisconsin Winters Often Include Motor Vehicle Accidents
Wisconsin winters make for some difficult travel conditions. Motor vehicle accidents often occur when roads are slippery, visibility is poor or inexperienced or negligent drivers take to the road during a winter storm. Several serious collisions occurred on a recent Monday when snow was falling and road conditions were troublesome.
A 25-year-old woman was making her way through the storm when her southbound vehicle suddenly careened out of control. Ice and snow had already covered State 26 when her car went into a spin and veered into the northbound lane. A vehicle headed in that direction struck the wayward vehicle as it spun and skidded its way across the highway. The woman who reportedly lost control of her steering died at the scene.
The 61-year-old woman who was driving the northbound vehicle suffered injuries in the collision. Thankfully, those injuries were not life-threatening and rescue workers were able to safely transport her to a nearby hospital for treatment. In another county, a similar crash occurred that same day that also involved a vehicle that traveled into an opposing lane, colliding with another vehicle. Sadly, a passenger in the vehicle that was struck was killed.
Who is financially responsible for Wisconsin motor vehicle accidents that occur during inclement weather? The answer depends on the exact details of the events leading up to a specific incident. Those who suffer a physical, emotional or economic injury due to driver negligence may seek financial recovery for their losses by filing personal injury claims in civil court.
Milwaukee County Installing Led Signs on Highways
Wisconsin residents in Milwaukee County saw an average of 33 occurrences of wrong-way driving per year from 2006 to 2012. Accidents resulting from these events are needless and unnecessary. They are also very dangerous because cars are heading straight at each other head-on at high speeds. The Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office, along with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, is trying to prevent these types of accidents by adding LED warning signs and real-time notification alerts to the county’s roadways.
Blinking lights to save lives
Nine on-ramps in Milwaukee County were fitted with alert systems, and two of them had blinking signs installed that alert drivers if they are driving the wrong way. In addition, notifications are sent to both the Sheriff’s Office and the State Traffic Operations Center to allow a quick response to a wrong-way driver. There is also an option to install traffic cameras in these areas.
Wrong-way traffic car crashes
Many car accidents arise from vehicles driving the wrong way into traffic. People involved in these accidents can be severely harmed because they are often driving at high speeds and are not able to react quickly enough to avoid the other driver. Negligent driving is against the law, and the driver-at-fault in a car accident can be held responsible for the damage caused.
However, it can be hard to prove who was at fault for a car crash or whether anyone was at fault at all. During a lawsuit, the court will consider many factors and may specifically look at the following:
- Driving inappropriately for the weather or traffic problems
- Disobeying traffic laws and signals
- Not using signals when turning
Courts will also look at whether drivers were under the influence of alcohol or drugs since doing so contributes to many unnecessary accidents every year. About 80 percent of the wrong-way traffic incidents in Milwaukee County from the past six years involved drunk drivers.
Sometimes, accidents are caused by other factors like poor weather conditions, bad lighting or improper road maintenance. If the accident was caused by problems with the road, the government may be the defendant in the lawsuit.
Car accidents and personal injury protection
Wisconsin law can provide remedies for people injured in car accidents. An injured motorist or passenger may be entitled to damages in the form of monetary relief for medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages and other compensation. Injured motorists would be wise to contact a qualified Wisconsin personal injury attorney who can help them determine their best options for relief.
Have you been involved in an auto accident? Contact Levine Law.