When you think about dangerous motor vehicle accidents, back-up accidents probably don’t come to mind. After all, fatalities and serious injuries are generally more likely at high speeds, and backing up a vehicle is usually a low-speed activity. But, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there are hundreds of back-up and back-over deaths each year, and thousands of injuries. The NHTSA classifies an accident as a back-up crash if the backing vehicle strikes another motor vehicle. A back-over accident is one in which the backing vehicle hits or runs over a pedestrian or other person who is not a driver or passenger in another vehicle.
While many of these injuries and fatalities occur as a result of traffic crashes or vehicles in traffic striking pedestrians, bicyclists and others not occupying vehicles, most are classified as “non-traffic” events. In fact, about three times as many back-up and back-over fatalities occur in non-traffic settings as occur on the road. These non-traffic events take place in settings such as driveways and parking lots, and more than 1/3 of those killed in back-over accidents are children.
The vast majority of injuries and fatalities in both back-up and back-over accidents involve passenger vehicles rather than large trucks and other commercial vehicles such as buses. Although a heavy commercial vehicle presents a greater danger in terms of the damage it may do, other factors make these collisions less common. These may include the lower number of large trucks compared with passenger vehicles, precautions such as the warning beep commercial vehicles make when backing up, the greater visibility of these large vehicles to pedestrians, and the lower likelihood that these vehicles will be backing up in areas frequented by children and other vulnerable pedestrians.
It is worth noting, though, that vans and light trucks account for a disproportionate share of the passenger vehicle accidents in both categories.
The tragedy of back-up and back-over deaths and serious injuries is that these “accidents” are nearly always preventable. Some simple precautions that can dramatically reduce the risk of a back-up collision or backing into or over a pedestrian or bicyclist include:
The fact that these accidents are avoidable, usually with relatively simple safety measures, means that most back-up and back-over accidents are caused by negligence. In other words, most accidents that occur while a driver is backing up are at least partially that driver’s fault.
If you have been injured or have lost a loved one because someone was negligent while backing up a vehicle, you are likely entitled to compensation. If you’ve been injured, this compensation may include reimbursement for medical expenses and lost income, compensation for pain and suffering and loss of quality of life, the projected cost of future medical bills and related care, and anticipated lost future earnings.
Back-up accident cases and other car and truck accident suits can be complicated. Proving negligence often requires reconstructing the cause of the accident after the fact, and it’s to your benefit to act quickly. Over time, witness memories may fade, and physical evidence may be lost, altered, or destroyed.
It’s also easy to make mistakes that can compromise your claim, whether through an innocent comment to an insurance company representative that’s taken out of context, a social media post that’s misconstrued, or the acceptance of a settlement offer before the full extent of damages is clear.
Attorney Kevin J. Broderick has devoted his career to helping people who have been injured through someone else’s fault. He understands how difficult and stressful the aftermath of a serious injury can be, and wants to make it as easy as possible for you to get the help you need.
You can schedule a free consultation right now to:
The sooner you schedule your free consultation with an experienced back up car accident lawyer you will be to protect yourself and your claim and pursue the compensation you deserve. You can start right now by calling 978-459-3085 or fill out the contact form on this site to get a free consultation. Even if you aren’t sure if you have a case, it is always better to call and ask.
Let Attorney Kevin Broderick answer your questions and evaluate your personal injury or vehicle accident case for free!
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