Montgomery Van Accident Lawyer
The class of vehicles described as “vans” can refer to a broad array of different vehicle types. The term van can describe a family minivan which can seat seven to nine passengers. A “van” can also describe a vehicle that is similar to a small work truck. This type of “white van” is commonly used by plumbers and other contractors.. The term “van” can also refer to larger 15-passenger-van that is similar to a bus. 15-passenger vans are frequently utilized by youth sports teams, churches, and other organizations.
If you have been involved in a van crash and have suffered serious injuries, you may be able to recover compensation. However, prior to filing a personal injury lawsuit, one must first consider the cause of the accident, potential legal theories that can lead to recovery, and the evidence that is available. Considering these and other aspects of a potential van accident lawsuit can help put an injury victim in a favorable position where a monetary recovery is likely. To schedule a free and confidential consultation regarding your van accident injuries, please call our legal team at the Morrison Law Firm by dialing 334-523-8323 today.
How Do I Recover Compensation for my Injuries after a Van Accident?
If you had the unfortunate experience of being a passenger in a van crash or accident, you may have suffered a number of injuries. Perhaps you suffered a broken arm or leg in the crash and now have difficulty getting around. Alternatively, maybe you hit your head in the crash and are now suffering from the consequences of a traumatic brain injury. Other individuals involved in a van accident may suffer multiple injuries or may even pass away due to the severity of the trauma inflicted.
When you are facing huge medical bills, continuing rehabilitative costs, and a loss of one’s income you are probably seeking the compensation you need to stabilize your life. Generally, the first opportunity to receive compensation due to van accident injuries is a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance. It is important to work with an attorney because insurance companies are known to “lowball” accident victims because they often underestimate the full cost of recovering from a serious injury. Working with an attorney who frequently negotiates injury settlements can help protect against accepting a settlement that is insufficient to cover injuries and other damages.
If an insurance claim against the at-fault driver is inappropriate or unavailable, we can also seek alternative legal options. If the at-fault driver was an uninsured (UI) or an underinsured motorist (UIM), we can explore whether you have supplemental UM or UIM coverage that can provide benefits. If not, we can also explore whether a lawsuit against the at-fault driver is likely to lead to recovery.
Common Causes of Van Accidents
Depending on the type of van, scope of the company or organization, and a number of passengers being transported, a van operator may or may not require a CDL. However, regardless of one’s training, experience, and background certain behaviors can significantly increase the likelihood of a van crash or other incident. Factors that can increase the chances of a crash or collision include:
- Insufficient vehicle maintenance – The failure to perform regular and routine maintenance can result in worn or bald tire treads, brakes that do not function as expected, and an array of other consequences. Skipping required maintenance means that a loss of vehicle control is far more likely to occur.
- Speeding or other reckless driving behaviors – Drivers who speed, change lanes erratically, fail to heed traffic signals, and engage in other risky behaviors place all passengers and motorists at an increased accident risk.
- Use of alcohol or drugs before getting behind the wheel – Drivers who consume alcohol or illegal drugs before driving often exhibit impaired reaction times and decision-making abilities. Similarly, the use of certain prescription medications may produce similar impacts on one’s ability to operate a vehicle.
- Poor weather and road conditions – Heavy rain, snow, and even harsh sun glare can contribute to causing serious accidents. Likewise, road hazards like cargo dropped from trucks and other debris can also increase the likelihood of accidents. Drivers must modify their behavior to comport with the conditions present.
The above covers only some of the factors and reasons that can increase the likelihood of a van accident. Many other factors can contribute to causing an accident including certain inherent aspects of particular van designs.
15-Passenger Van Rollover Accidents
15-passenger vans are extremely common vehicles that are in use throughout Alabama and the country. In fact, many churches, church groups, youth sports teams, and other organizations frequently make use of 15-passenger vans. While these vehicles typically do not require a CDL, the training of drivers is essential because these vehicles present certain rollover risks and must be operated with great care. Despite this fact, vehicles of this type can easily be rented by individuals lacking training or experience in their operation.
According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), 15-passenger vans present a particularly striking accident risk. That is, studies have shown that as the number of passengers in a 15-passenger van increases, the risk of a rollover accident increases significantly. The biggest difference in vehicle handling and capabilities occurs when the number of passengers increases from less than five to 10 or more. Since the vehicle handles dramatically different depending on the number of passengers present, it is prudent for only specially trained, experienced drivers to operate these vehicles.
Rollover accidents often produce extremely sever injuries. It is important to recognize that a NHTSA study analyzing crashes from 2003 to 2007, found that 80 percent of individuals involved in a rollover accident who did not wear seatbelts suffered fatal injuries. Drivers of 15-passenger vans should ensure that all passengers wear seat belts to protect against more severe injuries should an accident occur.
Let Our Alabama Van Accident Attorneys Help You
If you have suffered a serious injury in a van crash or accident, at the Morrison Firm our personal injury lawyers will diligently identify and describe all potential legal approaches that present a foreseeable likelihood of success. Our approach to the law is undergirded by founding attorney Rick Morrison’s deep breadth of experience in personal injury and vehicle defect litigation. In fact, Mr. Morrison has pursued tire defect and other personal injury cases since the early 1990s. To schedule a free and confidential consultation at the Morrison Law Firm, please call 334-523-8323 today.