Articles Posted in Motor Vehicle Accidents

safe driving winter attorneyThanksgiving is Thursday and the holiday party season has begun. With the next few months filled with celebrations that include friends and family, there is an increased rick of car accidents because of increased traffic, driver distraction and driving under the influence.

Holiday safety tips for Seattle drivers

  • Be sure that your car has been serviced, especially if you are travelling across a mountain pass or travelling to a ski resort. Making sure that your vehicle has been winterized including checking your tire pressure and anti freeze can help make your car safe.
  • Clean inside your car before travelling. Extraneous “stuff” in your car can pose a hazard.
  • Equip your vehicle with an emergency kit. Driving conditions in Western Washington can be treacherous when there is frost, ice and snowy conditions. Be sure you pack an emergency kit in case your car breaks down or you get into an accident. An emergency kit should include a blanket, a flashlight, ice scraper, flares and jumper cables.
  • Check road conditions. The Washington State Department of Transporation has an excellent website which can provide road and mountain pass information. The website provides live webcam feeds which can show you what kind of traffic you are likely to encounter. In severe weather, it is wise to avoid certain roads or to postpone one’s trip.
  • Take your time. Be sure you give yourself plenty of time to reach your destination and do not speed or drive aggressively.
  • Use your seat belt. Make sure you use your seat belt and also make sure that your passengers buckle up as well. Seat belts do save lives in an auto accident.
  • Avoid alcohol. Many people celebrate the holidays with alcoholic beverages and eggnog. Be sure to avoid alcohol before driving or use a designated driver that refrains completely from drinking.
  • Spread your holiday cheer and be courteous and patient with other drivers. Be sure to signal and to follow all traffic laws.

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A Community Transit commuter bus was involved in a collision with a sport utility vehicle this morning, injuring two passengers on the bus.

The CT bus was on its way to Seattle from Lake Stevens when the bus accident occurred around 6:30am in the Interstate 5 express lanes.

Though the accident is under investigation, a report in the Herald of Everett indicated that it may have been caused when the driver of the SUV made an unsafe lane change. A third vehicle that was also involved in the accident left the accident scene.

Washington Bus Accident Lawyer Provides Professional Services

The Farber Law Group, a Washington bus accident lawyer, represents people who have been seriously injured in accidents involving school buses, metro buses, shuttle busses and tour buses. Herbert G. Farber, the firm’s founder, works to secure accident settlements for those who have been injured.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a accident involving a bus or if a loved one has been killed, you may be seeking answers to your legal questions. After any accident, victims may be wondering how they will pay their bills including medical costs and who will compensate them for time off work. Because so many parties are involved in a bus accident involving a county, city, private or public entity, you may need to seek the advice of an experienced bus accident lawyer to insure your legal rights are protected and that you are fairly compensated for your damages.

The Farber Law Group will work to make sure you receive proper medical attention and that you receive compensation for your injuries. Mr. Farber is has more than 30 years experience with legal and medical issues and has the staff to evaluate the economic damages you have experienced.

Whenever you have been involved in a bus accident, you should seek medical care even if your injuries seem minor at the time. Sometimes, injuries that seem minor worsen with time. Sometimes a few days later, you may experience an increase in pain or other injuries that were not at first apparent.

The Farber Law Group will guide you through the process of receiving medical care, documenting your injuries, and gathering facts related to your injuries and the accident.
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Police are investigating a fatal motor vehicle accident involving a dump truck and a small SUV on Issaquah-Hobart Road in Issaquah today around 2:50pm this afternoon.

The driver of the passenger vehicle was killed. It has not been reported whether the dump truck driver was injured in the accident.

The accident occurred when the two vehicles collided head-on. One of the vehicles may have crossed over into the oncoming lane.

Head-on collisions are not common but when two vehicles travelling in opposite directions collide, the results can be catastrophic. When the two vehicles are mismatched such as in this Issaquah accident, the likelihood of a fatality increases.

At this point, it is not know what caused this accident. An investigation should reveal if one of the drivers was impaired, suffered a medical emergency or was driving negligently.

Whenever an automobile accidents results in a fatality, the police will perform a thorough investigation to determine what happened in the hopes they are able to prevent similar fatal accidents and to ascertain fault. After the police investigation, insurance companies may also investigate the accident to determine and limit their liability in case any car accident claim arises out of the accident. Both the police report and insurance investigator reports are very important pieces of evidences in any civil case arising from the accident.

Bellevue attorney represents car accident victims

Whenever a loved one has been killed in an automobile accident, the family of the deceased are justifiably in shock and may be seeking answers as to what happened and to answer the question of “Why?” Bellevu personal injury lawyer Herbert Farber has the necessary experience and knowledge to make sure any fatal accident is fully investigated and that the results of the investigation are fully disclosed.
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Two people were injured in a head-on collision on Stevens Pass on Saturday evening around 5:19pm.

According to the Washington State Patrol, the car accident occurred 25 miles west of Coles Corner when a car driven by Mark E. Stansfield, 61, of Quincy, crossed over the centerline and hit a Hyundai driven by Matthew A. Zastoupil, 35, of Stanwood.

Injured in the accident was Renee Zastoupil, who was a passenger in the Hyundai. Stansfield was also injured.

Head-on collisions can often have devastating consequences because of the high forces involved. These types of accidents often result in serious injuries and sometimes even death. Injuries are often a lot worse when there are two mismatched vehicles involved such as a semi truck and a passenger vehicle. Head-on collisions account for only 2% of all traffic accidents but result in 10% of car accident deaths.

Head-On collisions are usually caused by negligent driving. Over the years, we have seen many head-on collisions on Highway 2 including on Stevens Pass. In fact there have been more than 20 “crossover” accidents involving fatalities on this section of Highway 2 since 1999. These can be caused when a driver is speeding and fails to negotiate a curve on the road, while passing, or when a driver is drowsy and drifts into the other lane.

Injuries in head-on collisions can be very serious including head injury, fractures, whiplash, lacerations or internal injuries.

The Farber Law Group has helped hundreds of families who have suffered due to head-on motor vehicle collisions. We will work hard to help you obtain compensation for the associated costs of your accident including medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering and the cost of care.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a head on collision, contact us today. We will give your case the individual attention it deserves.
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The Seattle Fire Department (SFD) had a busy morning as there were several multi-car accidents on Interstate 5 at the Boeing Access Road. In all, there were four separate multi-car accidents in both the northbound and southbound lanes.

In all, medics evaluated 30 drivers and passengers and transported the injured to area hospitals. One 25-year-old man was critically injured in the accident when the car he was riding in went off the freeway. He was taken to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

The Washington State Patrol blamed speeding and following too close for the accidents on this foggy morning.

Car accident claims involving multiple cars are more complicated than accidents involving two vehicles. Insurers for the at-fault motorist will sometimes take advantage of the complexity of the situation and attempt to deny or delay compensation for victims. In addition, when multiple cars are involved with multiple injuries, some policies limits can be met.

Some issues unique to multiple vehicle collisions include:

  • Chain Reaction accidents – in this type of auto accident, one car is stopped at a light or on the roadway and is hit from behind causing that stopped vehicle to hit the car in front of it. The rear vehicle is often responsible for everyone’s damages.
  • Rear driver claims middle car hit first – sometimes the driver in the rear car will claim that the middle driver hit the driver in front first and the rear driver could not avoid the accident.
  • Driver in front at fault — sometimes the driver in the front vehicle can be at fault in the case where they stopped for no reason or if they made a sudden lane change and then stopped or applied their brakes causing the vehicle behind them to slam on their brakes.

Handling claims in a multi-car collision

Often in a multi-car collision, there is a lot of finger pointing and blaming going on. Sometimes people are not truthful about what happened. This is when an attorney can help resolve the situation because, when all the parties involved are arguing over who is at fault, claims do not get paid.
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bellevue car accident lawyerAs Bellevue personal injury attorneys, we have spent the last 30 years representing car accident victims and their families. We know that teenage drivers are more prone to get into car accidents than other drivers still it was troubling to read a new study by Texas A&M Transportation Institute (TTI) which reveals that teenage drivers between 15-17 are about eight times more likely than young adult drivers to be involved in a fatal car accident if they have passengers in their vehicle.

The TTI study gave both the good and bad news. The good news is that fatal car accidents for drivers 15-17 years old are down 60% nationwide in the last 10 years. The bad news is that the fatal car accident risk for 15-17 year old teenage drivers with teen passengers in their vehicle is up 30%.

While the TTI study did not look at the cause of the increase in fatal car accident among teenage drivers they did point out two factors that may be at play here:

  1. Text messaging and cell phone usage became ubiquitous during this same time period
  2. Speeding was a common factor in the fatal car accidents during the past 10 years.

Washington state has tried to address the problem of teenage drivers driving with other young people in the car by creating an intermediate driver’s license. For teen drivers under the age of 18, they are prohibited from driving with passengers under the age of 20 years old except for immediate family members for the first six month after obtaining their license. For the next six months, they are not allowed to have more than three passengers under the age of 20 who are not family members in the car.

In addition to restrictions on the number and age of passengers in their vehicle, the intermediate license laws prohibit teens for driving between 1am and 5am for the first 12 months unless they are supervised by a licensed driver who is 25 years or older.

The intermediate driver license law also prohibits teenage drivers from using cell phones or other wireless devices while driving even if the devices are hands-free.

The Washington law was created because lawmakers know that teen drivers transporting their friends are often distracted by the passengers in their vehicle. Studies also show that teenage male drivers are more apt to drive aggressively when they have peers in their car including speeding.
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stockxpertcom_id480234_size0.jpgA 29-year-old motorcyclist was killed on Friday night when he was struck by a sedan driven by a 33-year-old Bellevue man.

The motorcycle accident just one block north of Bellevue Square at the intersection of Northeast 10th Street and 102nd Avenue as the driver of the sedan attempted to make a left hand turn.

The Bellevue Police and firefighter-paramedics were in the motorcycle accident scene within four minutes but the motorcyclist was pronounced dead at Overlake Medical Center.

I was out for a walk on Friday night when I came across a motorcycle accident. Police had cordoned off several blocks to conduct their investigation. It is always a somber scene to see a motorcycle lying in an intersection with bystanders looking on. I was saddened to hear that the motorcyclist had not survived the accident.

The driver of the sedan was arrested for investigation of vehicular homicide according to a City of Bellevue press release. Vehicular homicide is a very serious criminal offense and it can be charged if a person is killed due to the negligent operation of a motor vehicle accident and the driver was driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

The Bellevue Police will attempt to determine where the driver had been drinking prior to the accident and if the drinking occurred at one of the local watering holes. With many restaurants and bars serving happy hour in the downtown Bellevue core, driving under the influence has increasingly become a problem for the Bellevue Police Department.

The family of the deceased are advised to retain the services of a personal injury to determine whether they have a “dram shop” case. Dram shop cases allow injured parties or their surviving family members to file a claim against a bar or restaurant that over served the drunk driver that caused a motor vehicle accident.
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seattle car accident lawyerRecently near Seattle, Washington, a $70,000 Tesla Model S became a YouTube sensation when it caught on fire. You can see the video of the Tesla engulfed in flames here.

The fire apparently was caused when the battery was impaled when the driver ran over a large metal object in the roadway. Though Tesla Motors claims that the fire contained the blaze to the front part of the car, the video clearly shows that the vehicle was engulfed. Fire fighters responding to the blaze were hampered by the fact that adding water to the fire seems to increase the fire’s intensity. Fire fighters learned that dry chemical extinguishers worked better on the fire.

The news of the battery fire caused Wall Street investors to become jittery and the Tesla’s stock fell about 6%.

Luckily in this case, the driver of the Tesla smelled smoke and pulled over before the fire engulfed in flames.

The Tesla fared well in crash front and side impact crash tests. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) rated the Model S in every category that it was tested. Because of the absence of a gasoline engine, the vehicle has a longer crumple zone in front. The vehicle has a low center of gravity because of where the battery is mounted and it is nearly impossible to roll over.

Since there are only about 12,000 of the vehicles that have been sold, it is too early to tell whether the battery is going to be problematic or whether this is a rare and isolated incident.

The Model S has earned all types of accolades including the 2013 Motor Trend Car of the Year and the 2013 World Green Car.
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iStock_000017490446XSmall.jpgKelly Ann Hudson pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide, vehicular assault and reckless driving in the car accident that killed Joyce Parsons, 81, of Kirkland and critically injured Arthur Kamm.

The fatal car accident occurred in August of 2012 when Hudson, was driving her minivan south on Juanita Drive Northeast, crossed the centerline near NE 120th Street and struck a small car driven by Kamm head-on.

It was determined that Hudson was driving under the influence of alcohol and prescription drugs when the car accident occurred.

Hudson will be sentenced on November 22 and faces between 8-1/2 years and a little more than 11 years in prison under stricter Washington state sentencing guidelines that went into effect June 2012. The prosecutor is recommending that Hudson receive the higher end of the sentencing range.

Vehicular homicide can be charged if a person is killed in an auto accident and the driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs, driving recklessly or driving without regard to the safety of others.

Women and DUI’s — An increasing problem

More and more women have been getting arrested for driving under the influence. In fact, a recently published study revealed that between 1998-2007 there was an increase of 28.8% in the number of females arrested for DUI.

Female DUI offenders are different than for male DUI drivers. The study found that the arrested women were 75% likely to also be taking a prescription medicine for mental issues. A trauma such as a death in the family, a relationship break up or losing a job often occurred prior to the DUI arrest. Female DUI profiles were generally in one of the following categories:

  • Women who were drinking to fit in – often young women use alcohol as a social lubricant.
  • Women who were recently married with a newborn can sometimes use alcohol to combat the stress and loneliness of child rearing.
  • Women who were empty nesters or divorced

Just 10 days ago, Seattle’s King5 TV reported a story about a woman who was arrested for DUI twice in the same day. Laura Kelsch, 58, was arrested after she crashed her vehicle into a Black Diamond gift store. Kelsch was found to be three times the legal limit. Because of crowded jails, police impounded Kelsch’s car and took her home. A few hours later she was arrested again, still intoxicated and driving her husband’s truck.

Women metabolize alcohol differently than men. The reason is that women have less body water than men of a similar weight and they metabolize alcohol differently. Female hormones may also intensify alcohol’s effect on women.
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moped and scooter accident lawyerMany Seattleites are opting to drive scooters or mopeds for those zip around town trips. Not only are scooters and mopeds economical but they are fun to drive and and express a joie de vivre attitude. It is important, however, to select the scooter or moped that is right for you, one that has sufficient power to be safe for the driving you intend to do and also for you to take and pass a qualified safety course to obtain a motorcycle endorse
In this blog posting, we provide some useful information about scooter safety and Washington state scooter laws.

What is a moped?

A moped can have either an electric of fuel-based motor that is 50cc’s or smaller. Mopeds cannot travel more than 30 miles per hour. To operate a moped on city streets you do not have to have a motorcycle endorsement or auto insurance however you are required to have a driver license, register the moped, sear a helmet and use eye protection if your moped does not have a windshield. You are not allowed to ride a moped on sidewalks, bicycle paths, hiking trails or on highways.

What is a scooter?

A scooter is a motorcycle that allows the rider to mount it by stepping through the frame with a platform for the driver’s feet. Most scooters have a front that conceals the rider’s legs and housing that conceals the engine. A scooter generally has smaller wheels than a motorcycle. For legal purposes, in Washington state scooters are any 2-wheel or 3-wheel vehicle that has a larger than 50cc motor/engine and can travel at speed of 30 mph or more.

Scooters are required to have the same type of driver’s license endorsement as other motorcycles. To receive an endorsement, the driver must pass a motorcycle safety course at an improved school AND pass a knowledge and riding skills test at the training school and then go to the licensing office to obtain the motorcycle endorsement.

Scooter and Moped Rules

The following are requirements for scooter and moped drivers:

  • You must have a valid driver’s license. Scooter drivers must also have a motorcycle endorsement.
  • You must use turn signals when changing lanes or turning.
  • You can not split lanes or dart in and out of traffic.
  • You are prohibited from riding on sidewalks, bicycle lanes and hiking trails.
  • You should not use alcohol or drugs when operating a scooter or moped.

Scooter and Moped Safety Tips

  • Make sure other drivers see you by wearing bright colors and reflectors and make sure your headlights, brake lights and taillights are operating correctly.
  • Because scooters and mopeds do not have electronic stability control as do newer motorcycle models, be especially careful when cornering or on curves.
  • Do not speed and be extra careful about your speed when there is loose gravel or other debris on the highway.
  • Be careful in intersections, driveways and entrances to parking lots as other drivers may not see you.
  • Avoid riding in other motorists blind spots.
  • Ride with both hands on the handle bars.
  • Keep both feet on the floorboards.
  • Avoid potholes, bumps and other road surface hazards.
  • Do not carry a passenger unless your scooter is rated to do so.

Here is a list of approved Motorcycle Safety Courses in Western Washington. Classes are available in Anacortes, Auburn, Bellingham, Everett, Kelso, Kent, Kirkland, Renton and Seattle.
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