Many car and motorcycle accidents in California involve speed. In fact, the National Safety Council finds that speed is the third leading cause of accidents in the U.S. What’s worse, speed is involved in more than 30% of fatal car accidents. Read on to learn more about the effects of speed on car accidents. Then contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation.
Urban freeways in particular see many speed-related accidents
While speed-related accidents are prevalent throughout the world, the numbers are even larger on urban freeways. In these areas, speeding, coupled with following vehicles too closely and the many cars that are on the road, are more likely to result in accidents. In most freeways in California, speed limits range from 45 miles per hour to 65 miles per hour. Unfortunately, drivers often go much faster.
California law as it pertains to speeding
California vehicle code includes a “basic speed law” that states that regardless of the posted speed limit, vehicles must travel at “reasonable” speeds. This requires them to take other factors into consideration beyond the posted speed limit, such as traffic, visibility, weather, and road conditions. In short, common sense should be used. If the posted speed limit is 65 mph but there is heavy traffic and a rainstorm, then a reasonable driver would likely lower their speed.
We must often evaluate accidents to discover if speed was a factor
Most highway accidents in Bakersfield and throughout the country are investigated by the California Highway Patrol. The officer will fill out a CHP Standard Traffic Collision Report. The bad news is that this report is not admissible in court. However, it does give a lot of valuable data about an accident.
For example, if an officer feels that speed was a primary or associated factor in the accident, then they will note so on the second page of the report. Your personal injury attorney can then use this information as a bargaining chip when negotiating a claim.
If the case must be taken to trail, then a traffic reconstruction expert can look at photos of the scene, the damage on the vehicles, and the location of all vehicles after the accident to estimate the speeds at which the vehicles were traveling. When combined with eyewitness information, this can make a compelling case to support the fact that speed was a factor and to prove who was at fault.
Call us today if you need a free legal consultation
Have you been involved in a car accident? If you have, then we urge you to contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation. We can get the basic facts from you and answer any questions you have about your options. If the case has merit, then we will take it on a contingency basis that assures you do not pay a cent unless we recover damages for you.