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Raleigh Personal Injury Law Blog

Attorneys help North Carolina motorcycle accident victims

Any North Carolina resident who has ridden a motorcycle for any length of time probably has a tale or two of a close brush with death. Despite the freedom and sense of adventure they offer riders, motorcycles also hold out the possibility of injury and death because they provide little in the way of protection to riders.

In fact, the possibility of being seriously injured or killed in a motorcycle accident is much higher than in crashes involving other motor vehicles. Injuries can be severe and may require long-term medical care and treatment. In many cases, motorcyclists are left with permanent disabilities and are unable to work again. Huge medical bills and loss of income can mean big financial problems for a family.

Driver with past violations involved in train-truck accident

Residents of Wake County, North Carolina, might know that all commercial vehicles carrying large loads need to follow weight limits set by North Carolina authorities. These limits are set with various factors in mind, such as reducing the effects of an accident.

Due to heavy loads and fast-moving speed, a trucking accident can cause much more damage than an accident involving a car. For example, a recent accident involving a truck and an Amtrak train resulted in 55 people being injured. Reports stated that the truck driver could not successfully maneuver an oversized rig through a tight railroad crossing, resulting in derailment of the Amtrak train. A police investigation has begun and so far no charges have been filed against the truck driver with regard to this truck accident.

THE BASICS OF AUTO INSURANCE

North Carolina law requires every driver to carry automobile liability insurance in the minimum amount of 30/60/25. This means a driver must be insured for a minimum of $30,000 bodily injury or death per person / $60,000 bodily injury or death per accident / $25,000 property damage of others in any one accident.

Understanding North Carolina automobile insurance--Part II

Residents of Raleigh and Wake County, North Carolina, might remember one of our previous posts, which talked about the rights of a person with a valid motor vehicle license after having a car accident. The post also talked about the North Carolina Contributory Negligence Law, according to which a driver who is even partially at-fault, will not be able to collect damages in a car accident.

The previous post also talked about how much reimbursement a person can expect to receive from an insurance company to repair a car with accident damage, if it is repairable. This post will discuss how much a driver can expect to receive from an insurance company after a car accident, if a car is totaled and what benefits an insurance carrier may provide if an accident victim is injured.

Understanding North Carolina automobile insurance-Part I

Most residents of Wake County who drive carry valid motor vehicle insurance under the assumption that in the event of a car accident, their losses will be taken care of by their insurance carrier or by the carrier for the other driver. However, in many cases, the insurance companies try to avoid paying for damages following a car accident. It is important to have knowledge of the rights of North Carolina residents with respect to motor vehicle insurance.

According to North Carolina contributory negligence law, a driver who is partially at fault cannot collect personal injury damages from the other driver or the other driver's insurance company. After an accident, an insurance adjuster typically investigates the accident in order to establish who was at fault or whose negligence caused the crash. The injured party does not have to accept the adjuster's determination, however. The injured party has the right to go to court and try to prove the other party was at fault.

The loss of a loved one can result in significant financial loss

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2005 fatal car crashes in North Carolina resulted in costs of $1.5 billion. According to that study, which was discussed in an earlier blog post, medical-related costs constituted $18 million of the total loss while work-loss costs were an astounding $1.48 billion. This statistic shows that in addition to the emotional impact of the loss of a loved one, a fatal accident can severely affect survivors financially.

According to the CDC report, work loss costs are calculated by adding salary and fringe benefits that a deceased person would have earned had he or she lived their expected life span as well as the value of household work the average person of the same age and sex performs for life. This calculation shows the work loss due to the death of a young person is greater than work loss for an older person.

You've been in a car wreck. Now what?

Car wrecks are unexpected and stressful. Even the most careful driver can be in a wreck.

Immediately after the wreck:

  • Take a breath and stay calm.
  • Call 911.
  • Turn on your car's hazard lights.
  • Check for injuries - yours and your passengers.
  • If you are able to move safely, check on the drivers and passengers in the other car(s).

Motorcyclist killed in Raleigh after collision with pickup truck

Motorcyclists in Raleigh, North Carolina, understand that the consequences of being involved in an accident while on a motorcycle can be severe. In order to counter those risks, motorcyclists take a number of safety precautions but still, every now and then, a motorcyclist is injured or killed in an accident. One such fatal accident recently occurred in Raleigh.

According to police, the incident happened when a 32-year-old motorcyclist, moving south on a local road near the Wake County School bus maintenance facility, was struck by a pickup truck that was making a turn from the northbound lane. The collision claimed the life of the motorcyclist at the scene. The driver of the truck did not sustain injuries in the crash.

Requirements a school bus driver must meet in North Carolina

Every day, thousands of children in Raleigh go to school by bus. If even one of these buses is involved in an accident, the consequences can be very serious, especially because there are children on board most times. Recent examples of such accidents in the North Carolina can be found on the blog site. In order to prevent such bus accidents, the state's Department of Transportation has a set of requirements that school bus drivers must meet before operating a school bus.

A school bus driver must be at least 18 years old and be in possession of a valid commercial driver's license issued by the North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles. That driver must also have at least six months' experience as a licensed motor vehicle operator and a valid health certificate. It is also important for drivers to establish that they do not hold more than one commercial driver's license and that their license is not disqualified, suspended or revoked for any reason.

How North Carolina determines damages in wrongful death cases

When a loved one dies in an accident because of the negligence of another person, surviving family members often choose to file a lawsuit to seek compensation from the party determined to have been negligent. Under North Carolina's laws, the action must be brought within two years of the date of death.

Compensation or damages for wrongful deaths are awarded by courts on the basis of certain criteria as mentioned in state statutes. The compensation can be provided for medical costs in treating the person from the time of the alleged negligent incident or event until the person died. Loved ones can also seek damages for the loved one's pain and suffering before death. They can seek reasonable compensation for the costs incurred in all funeral arrangements and ceremonies.

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