How Do You Figure Out Who Is At Fault During A Chain Reaction Crash?

Do you consider yourself to be a very careful driver? You may have an exceptional driving record and have never been involved in a car accident during your lifetime. However, suddenly you may find yourself in the middle (quite literally) of a "fender bender" and feel that you have to stand your ground to dispute the circumstances. How do complicated vehicle accidents like this get unraveled, to determine exactly who is at fault?

The Chain Reaction

When three or more vehicles get involved in a series of crashes, typically caused by the initial crash, this is often known as a chain reaction. It's fairly commonplace, but it can be difficult to determine exactly who is at fault, whether more than one person is, or indeed whether anybody can take responsibility.

How Does This Happen?

Usually, the chain reaction takes place on a narrow road or in an area where traffic is coming to a stop because vehicles are travelling close to each other at that point. For example, a third driver may come up behind them too quickly and be unable to stop, causing a collision. This collision then pushes car two into car one in front, due simply to the momentum of the initial impact. You might think that the driver who caused the initial crash, setting off the chain reaction is going to be held responsible. However, it is frequently necessary to prove negligence quite carefully, in order to reach a settlement.

Contributing Circumstances

For example, if vehicle number two in the above example had faulty brake lights, it could be argued that the driver following behind was unable to determine that the car had, in fact, stopped, causing the collision. In this example, it could be that the driver of the second car would be found liable for the damages to the other vehicles. In another scenario, traffic lights or street lamps may have been faulty and in this case, it could be argued that the public agency is liable to an extent, due to the confusion or poor visibility caused by the fault.

Other Mitigating Circumstances

It may even be argued that exceptionally bad weather at the time caused the crash and this was unavoidable. In yet another case, perhaps the first driver became ill due to a medical condition, causing erratic driving that contributed to the crash. In this case, liability may be eliminated altogether.

Figuring It All out

A good deal of evidence needs to be gathered and a proper investigation needs to be initiated, in order to sort out your case. Therefore, it's a good idea to get in touch with a car accident lawyer to make sure that you are well represented.

Contact lawyers like those at Alexanders Lawyers for more information and assistance.