Statistically speaking, driving in any big city can be dangerous simply because of the sheer volume of vehicles and pedestrians on the streets. No matter how long you have been driving, how many defensive driving classes you’ve had or how well you watch what is going on around you, there is a possibility that some vehicle might emerge from an alleyway or run a red light, resulting in an accident in which you are not at fault.
However, what happens if the responding officer faults you in that accident? No matter who is found at fault on the scene, you can always hire a Chicago car accident lawyer who can represent you if you feel you have the right to contest. First, though, let’s look at a few pointers in avoiding that accident altogether.
The Leading Causes of Accidents
Although statistics change a bit from year to year, the three leading causes of car accidents remain the same. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, NHTSA, the three leading causes of accidents are:
- Drunk Driving
While you may not be speeding, drunk or distracted, you cannot control what drivers in other vehicles will do. What you can do is keep your eyes on the road, constantly monitoring to the right, left and rear as you progress forward. Defensive driving may save your life one day, so if you haven’t already done so, it pays to take a defensive driving course, especially if you live in areas with high volumes of vehicles on the road at any time of day.
What to Do If You Can’t Avoid an Accident
Few people ever intentionally crash their vehicles and this is why they are called ‘accidents.’ While you can do everything in your power to stay attentive and drive defensively, accidents do happen. If you should be involved in an accident, the very first thing to do (if you are able) is to ensure that everyone in your vehicle is okay. If not, call for rescue. Check the driver and passengers in the other vehicle as well because they may not be able to do so. Then, call the police and/or rescue.
After exchanging insurance information and giving as brief a statement as possible to the police on scene, you will want to call your lawyer as soon as possible. This is especially important if you receive a ticket or citation for being at fault, even if you know you weren’t. One thing to be aware of is how much weight insurance companies place on the police report. Although they will look at the report, the final outcome will depend on what their adjusters find. Don’t talk to anyone but your attorney once you’ve contracted one, even your insurance company. If you stand to be found at-fault, a car accident lawyer is going to be your best defense. Don’t let your insurance premiums go up unnecessarily if you can prove you were not at fault and by all means, do what you can to maintain a good driving record. Sometimes only an attorney will fight your cause, and this is one of those times.