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Driver Negligence, Fatal Accidents, and Wrongful Death Claims

Unfortunately, car accidents happen every day, with many resulting in injury or death. According to the Arizona Department of Transportation (DOT), in 2018, the state saw a total of 127,056 crashes. Of those, 916 resulted in death, and a total of 1,010 people lost their lives. The agency reported that equates to 1 person being killed almost every 9 hours.

Driver Behaviors and Causes of Car Accidents

Although factors such as inclement weather or poor road conditions can cause fatal traffic collisions, many such accidents also result from driver negligence or recklessness.

Some of the top driver-related factors that can lead to a crash include:

  • Distracted driving: This occurs when a driver participates in any activity that diverts their attention from the road. Such behaviors could consist of talking or texting on a cell phone, eating, and/or facing passengers while conversing with them, among others.
  • Speeding: When motorists drive at increased speeds, they have less time to react to unexpected hazards. According to the Arizona DOT’s 2018 accident report, 281 people were killed in a speed-related crash.
  • Drunk driving: Alcohol impairs the ability to operate a vehicle safely, and often makes it difficult to properly maneuver away from dangerous situations. The DOT reported that, in 2018, 261 people lost their lives in a drunk-driving related accident.
  • Disobeying traffic laws: Running red lights or stop signs, traveling the wrong way, making illegal turns, and other actions that go against driving statutes is unsafe for everyone on the road.

Pursuing a Wrongful Death Claim

Drivers must operate their vehicles safely and according to laws. If they breach that duty and cause fatal collisions, aside from potentially facing criminal penalties, they could also be subject to civil action. That means the spouse, child, parent, or guardian of the deceased could file a wrongful death claim to recover compensation for accident-related damages.

When pursuing legal recourse, the decedent’s family or representative must prove that the driver’s carelessness caused an accident. They must also show that they suffered losses and expenses because of their loved one’s death.

Contact Bowman, Smith & Kallen for Trusted Legal Representation

Pursuing a wrongful death claim can be a complex and challenging process. Not only must you follow proper procedures, file specific documents, and meet strict deadlines, but you are also grieving the loss of a loved one. Understanding the difficulties concerning these types of matters, our attorneys are here to provide the compassionate legal support you need to effectively handle your case. Backed by over 100 years of experience, we know how to develop compelling strategies and fight for the compensation you deserve.

To see how our legal experience and knowledge can help you, call us at (928) 433-2355 or contact us online.