One of the major concerns with New Mexico truck accidents – aside from the mayhem of the initial collision – is the potential that the accident causes a chain-reaction accident. A chain-reaction accident occurs when the disabled vehicles involved in the initial collision end up being struck by other motorists or when an accident is caused due to the backed-up traffic that forms following a collision.
Chain-reaction accidents are common on New Mexico highways, where motorists travel within feet of one another at high speeds. When a truck driver loses control of his rig, given the speed with which other motorists are traveling and the distance that most motorists follow, a chain-reaction accident is likely.
When it comes to determining fault in a New Mexico chain-reaction accident, courts use a “comparative fault” analysis to determine which motorists are entitled to recover for their injuries. Under a comparative fault analysis, any motorist injured in an accident can pursue a claim of compensation against any of the other motorists they believe to be at fault for their injuries. This is even the case when the motorist bringing the case is partially at fault. However, courts will reduce an accident victim’s award amount by their own percentage of fault.
For example, if a plaintiff is injured in an accident with several other motorists, the plaintiff can name all of the other motorists in the lawsuit. If a jury determines that the plaintiff was 15% at fault for causing the accident and suffered $500,000 in damages, the plaintiff’s ultimate award would be reduced from the $500,000 figure to $425,000 ($500,000 minus 15%).
Chain-Reaction Accident Claims Five Lives
Earlier this month, five people died in a chain-reaction accident that occurred on a Nebraska highway. According to a local news report, the initial collision occurred at about 7:30 in the morning, with two subsequent crashes occurring at around 10:00 and 11:35 in the morning. It is not clear whether the second and third collisions were caused as a result of the traffic back-up caused by the first collision, or if they were entirely unrelated.
Evidently, there were four fatalities in the first accident. Three of the victims were not wearing their seatbelts and were ejected from the vehicle. The second accident occurred after a semi-truck caught fire on the side of the highway. As another semi-truck approached the backed-up traffic, the driver failed to slow down and ran into the back of a stopped truck. In all, four vehicles were involved in the second collision, with one fatality being reported.
A third accident between an SUV and a semi-truck resulted in no injuries. Evidently, the driver of the SUV failed to slow down and ran into the rear of the semi-truck, which had stopped for traffic.
Have You Been Injured in a New Mexico Truck Accident?
If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a New Mexico truck accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. The dedicated New Mexico personal injury lawyers at the Fine Law Firm have decades of experience handling a wide range of injury cases, including New Mexico truck accident claims. To learn more about how an attorney at the Fine Law Firm can help you pursue the compensation you deserve, call 505-889-FINE.
More Blog Posts:
The Importance of New Mexico Trucking Limitations and Restrictions, New Mexico Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, May 10, 2018.
Trends Show Large Truck and Bus Accidents Are on the Rise, New Mexico Personal Injury Lawyer Blog, April 26, 2018.