Car crashes are more than just inconvenient. If serious, they can leave you severely injured and without an income, while your regular household expenses and accident-related medical bills mount. The situation can be particularly difficult to swallow when you weren't the one who caused the crash and resulting damages.
Fortunately, if you were injured in a car accident caused by a driver with an obstructed view, you may be able to recover compensation from the at-fault party. Here's what you need to know about California obstructed view crashes, including how to protect your rights, why you should file a personal injury lawsuit, and how our skilled Inland Empire attorneys can help.
Harmless items can become dangerous obstructions when they block a driver's view of oncoming traffic. Common natural and man-made objects that can obstruct motorists' line of sight include:
Fault and Potentially Liable Parties
Fault in personal injury cases can be complex and complicated. All motorists have a legal duty to operate their vehicles with reasonable safety to avoid injuring others. A blocked line of sight generally doesn't excuse drivers from responsibility for whatever accidents, injuries, and damages that result, as they're expected to exercise extra caution to safely navigate such situations.
However, while an obstructed view doesn't absolve drivers who cause crashes, it does open up the possibility of a second potentially liable party: the property owner. Just as motorists have a legal responsibility to operate their vehicles safely, owners are required to take reasonable steps to ensure the safety of their property—such as trimming overgrown trees, hedges, and shrubs, and making sure that fences, signs, walls, and lawn ornaments don't cause dangerous obstructions. If they fail to do so, they risk partial liability for accidents and damages.
After a serious car crash, you can find yourself drowning in unexpected medical expenses, unable to work while recovering from your injuries, and holding the bag for the repair or replacement costs of your damaged vehicle—you may even be grappling with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety, or other psychological issues stemming from the accident. Thankfully, you can seek compensation for these and other losses. Common damages in California obstructed view crash cases include:
- All current and future accident-related medical expenses
- Vehicle repair or replacement costs
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity (if the accident forced you into a lower-paying position or will prevent you from returning to the workforce in any capacity)
- Physical pain and suffering
- Psychological trauma
- Scarring or disfigurement
- Reduced quality of life
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- And other economic and non-economic losses
Protecting Your Rights
Even if your accident seems like an open-and-shut case of negligence to you, you'll need evidence to prove it to the at-fault party's insurance company or in court. Here are a few things you can do to protect your rights and preserve valuable evidence after an obstructed view crash:
- Stay at the scene
- Report the accident to the police and your auto insurance company
- Write down the name—and contact and insurance information—of the other driver
- Take photos of any visible injuries and damage to your vehicle
- Take photos of any noticeable obstructions that may have caused or contributed to the crash
- Get names and contact information from everyone who witnessed the accident
- See a doctor as soon as possible
- Contact an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible—before agreeing to provide the other party's insurer with a recorded statement or release of your medical records
Contact Us to Discuss Your Case
If you've been injured in an accident, you need strong legal counsel. That's just what you'll find at the Inland Empire Law Group, where our talented injury recovery specialists help victims fight for—and obtain—the damages they deserve. Contact us today at (888) 694-3529 to schedule an appointment for a free initial consultation. We look forward to discussing the details of your case and helping you explore your legal rights and options.