Southaven & Hernando Speeding Accident Lawyer

man driving on an empty road

Speeding is illegal and needlessly puts the lives of drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and others at risk of serious injury or death. One out of every three speeding accidents causes a fatality, according to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. While the criminal justice system punishes drivers who speed, the civil courts are there to help victims and their families demand compensation for speeding-related fatalities and injuries. The first step to doing so is retaining an experienced car accident attorney. If you or a loved one were hurt in a speeding accident, let Chatham Gilder Howell Pittman go to work for you.

Two Types Of Speeding Accidents

Speeding accident victims are responsible for demonstrating the series of events that led to their injuries. It’s therefore important to understand the ways in which these wrecks can occur. There are two main types of speeding accidents:

Driving over the posted speed limit. Exceeding the speed limit is common and is what most people think of with respect to speeding accidents. The speed limit could be the permanent rate of speed established for a given stretch of road or highway. It could also be a temporary speed limit due to, for instance, a nearby road construction zone. Regardless, it’s easy for a driver to lose focus on how fast he or she is driving, and thereby put others in danger of a collision.

Driving too fast for the conditions. Even if a driver is operating within the posted speed limit, he or she may not be able to safely operate the automobile. Road and environmental conditions may make an otherwise safe speed unsafe. Driving in the rain, or on icy or snowy roads, requires a driver to slow down. So does driving in heavy traffic, at night, or in areas with poor lighting. As mentioned above, road work can also make it unsafe to drive at the normal speed limit.

The Consequences Of A Speeding Accident

Speeding makes it significantly more likely that a driver will cause a serious, perhaps even fatal, automobile accident. That’s because speeding has the following effects:

  • Less time to react to slower vehicles, a traffic light, or other road conditions
  • Increased distance required to safely slow down and stop
  • Risk of losing control of a vehicle, especially if there are turns or other changing road features
  • Decreased effectiveness of automobile safety equipment such as seatbelts and airbags
  • More serious injuries and more costly damages (e.g. higher medical bills)

How To Hold Speeding Drivers Liable

If you or someone you love has been in a speeding accident, your first priority is to seek immediate medical attention. This is important for two reasons. First, failure to see a doctor could worsen your injuries. Second, it could make it more difficult to establish the at-fault driver’s liability. That’s because the more time there is between your accident and when you see a doctor, the easier it is for the driver to claim that something else (including your delay in seeking medical attention) was responsible for your injuries. Even if you think you weren’t seriously injured in a speeding accident, see a doctor.

As with other Mississippi personal injury cases, speeding accident victims have the burden of proving the following four elements:

Duty of care. Every motorist owes every other motorist, along with pedestrians and bicyclists, a duty to safely drive their vehicles. This means following traffic safety laws and adjusting one’s driving to changing road or environmental conditions.

Breach. Anything that violates the duty of care is a breach. Speeding is considered a breach, which is why attorneys for both parties will sometimes dispute whether this element has been established. Expert witness testimony may be necessary to prove it. For example, an accident reconstructionist can examine evidence from the accident scene and conclude the at-fault driver was speeding.

Causation. There must be a causal link between the breach and the victim’s injuries. Causation actually consists of two elements: actual cause (speeding was the cause in fact) and proximate cause (it was legally foreseeable that speeding could cause the accident). Your attorney can explain more about this element.

Damages. Finally, the speeding accident victim must show what kinds of losses he or she suffered as a result of the wreck. Attorneys for both parties routinely spar over the nature and amount of damages.

What Damages May Be Available After A Speeding Accident?

Every automobile crash is different, so the damages that may be available in your case will be unlike those that are available in someone else’s. In most cases, however, victims have the right to seek the following for their harms and losses:

  • Medical bills, including hospitalization, surgery, prescription medication, physical therapy and rehabilitation, follow-up visits to the doctor, adaptive medical equipment, and more
  • Lost wages due to time recovering from injuries, visits to the doctor, and related needs
  • Lost earning capacity in the event the injury victim is unable to work at the same job or level of productivity as before
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Reduced quality of life
  • Wrongful death damages, in the event the victim dies from his or her injuries

Your lawyer will investigate the circumstances surrounding your speeding accident, and then start building a case to demand the maximum recovery available under law. If possible, we will negotiate a settlement with the driver’s insurance company. But we are prepared to take your case to court if necessary.

Contact Our Southaven & Hernando Speeding Accident Attorney

Suffering a speeding accident can cause irreversible and painful injuries, destroy one’s ability to enjoy life, and end a once-promising career. Victims should not have to bear the burden of these and other consequences because someone chose to drive dangerously. Contact Chatham Gilder Howell Pittman today to get started on your speeding accident case.