Multi-vehicle collisions are common in heavy congestion or poor weather, but even the biggest accidents rarely involve dozens of vehicles. According to ABC13 Eyewitness News, though, a major accident involving 26 vehicles happened just recently on Interstate 10 at FM 1724.
The collisions were in the westbound lanes, which were shut down for hours afterward so responders could clear the wreckage. The Chambers County Sheriff’s Office claims that six tractor-trailers and 20 passenger vehicles were involved in the chaotic scene.
None of the westbound lanes were opened for some time after the accident. Fortunately, responders were able to clear the scene by 9 p.m.
Seven people who were involved went to local hospitals to receive treatment for the injuries they sustained. No deaths have been reported yet. It is unclear what caused the initial collision, and the case remains under investigation.
If you were hurt in a multi-vehicle collision and you’re not sure how to determine liability, contact the Robson Law Firm. An Austin personal injury lawyer will assess the circumstances of the accident in order to identify every party that may have contributed in some way to the damages you have incurred. Call 512-345-8200 to schedule a free case evaluation.
Who Is Liable in a Multi-Vehicle Collision?
Insurance adjusters have all kinds of strategies for determining liability, and they often rely on generalizations to simplify claims. For example, in most rear-end collisions, an insurance adjuster will determine that the motorist who was driving the vehicle in the rear is responsible for the accident.
When it comes to chain reaction accidents that involve more than two cars, though, determining liability becomes inherently more complicated. In the accident discussed above, for example, you cannot simply assign 100 percent of liability to the very last motorist in the chain.
There are several factors that insurance adjusters and law enforcement officials will consider when determining fault in a mass chain reaction. In addition to recording the road conditions and the positioning of every single car involved, they might ask questions like:
- Whose negligence or reckless driving set off the chain reaction? and
- Which motorists were speeding or following too closely?
In most multi-car accidents, one vehicle starts the chain of collisions, but other vehicles contribute to its severity. Thus, it is unlikely that a single individual will be 100 percent responsible for a pileup involving dozens of cars.
Both police officers and insurance adjusters might assign a percentage of fault to each motorist involved. This will make it easier to determine what a fair settlement might look like for each driver who ends up filing a claim. In the state of Texas, accident victims can recover compensation for the damages they have incurred as long as they were less than 51 percent responsible for the incident.
If you were hurt in a multi-vehicle collision and you’re not sure how to prove liability or secure the compensation you deserve, contact the Robson Law Firm. We have recovered more than $26 million for our clients.
Call 512-345-8200 to schedule a free consultation with an accident lawyer in Austin. You can learn more about car accident claims in Texas by visiting USAttorneys.com.