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Morgantown Auto Accident Injury Law Blog

After my collision, what damages can I be compensated for?

Car accident victims usually have to deal with far more than just physical injuries. The emotional toll of being involved in a serious collision can be debilitating, and economic damages only compound the difficult nature of the recovery process. For those in West Virginia who want to seek compensation for their damages but are unsure of what that includes, here are a few economic damages that might apply.

Being disfigured in an accident can be especially traumatic. Disfigurement can include a wide range of physical deformities, including scarring and other permanent changes to a victim's personal appearance. Victims can sometimes receive compensation for disfigurement, while in other situations this is covered by compensation for mental anguish.

Bill pushes steeper penalties for reckless driving car accidents

Being injured or losing a loved one in a motor vehicle accident can be extremely traumatic. A new bill seeks to increase penalties for reckless drivers who cause these types of car accidents. The bill has yet to be approved and is currently on its third round of reading in West Virginia's House of Delegates, but if made into law it could have a significant impact on victims and their families.

The purpose of House Bill 3134 is to increase the criminal penalties for reckless driving that results in either serious bodily injury or death. Currently, a driver convicted of reckless driving that resulted in death could spend up to a year behind bars and have to pay between $100 and $1,000 in fines. The bill proposes that a conviction for this charge result in anywhere from three to 15 years of prison time and fines between $1,000 and $3,000.

West Virginia wrestles with pedestrian accidents

The number of accidents involving pedestrians in the United States and in West Virginia – both fatal and non-fatal – has jumped in the past 10 years.

According to the National Transportation Safety Board, in the U.S. there were 70,286 non-fatal pedestrian injuries while there were 85,312 such injuries in 2016. In 2007, there were 4,699 fatalities among pedestrians while in 2016, there were 5,987.

Driver charged for fleeing scene of fatal accident

The driver who allegedly caused a fatal hit-and-run accident in Jan. 2019 was recently arrested and charged in the incident. The man had apparently left the state of West Virginia and was located across state lines before being brought to face the criminal allegations. As the investigation into the accident and the driver's alleged negligence continue, the victim's family might consider pursuing a wrongful death claim for the fatal accident.

On Jan. 21, police responded to reports of a hit-and-run accident involving a 60-year-old man. The victim had apparently pulled over to the side of the road and then exited his vehicle in order to tighten some straps on a trailer he was towing. As he stood alongside the road, he was allegedly struck and killed by a 45-year-old man. Witnesses told police that the driver briefly stopped before fleeing the scene.

Who is responsible for my car accident injuries?

Car accidents are often traumatizing events that cause long-lasting physical and emotional damages. For West Virginia victims, recovering compensation from negligent drivers is often key to their recoveries, but are these the only responsible parties? In some situations, a person who was not even in the vehicle at the time of a car accident can still be held responsible.

It is not necessarily uncommon for some drivers to lend their vehicles to loved ones and friends. If the person who borrowed the car causes an accident while driving it, that individual is often considered to be the only one at fault. However, by loaning their vehicle, the owner can also be held responsible through vicarious liability. This is possible through negligent entrustment or simply called owner's liability.

Wrongful death: Man killed in hit-and-run accident

Unexpectedly losing a loved one is a devastating experience that no family in West Virginia should have to go through. Unfortunately, all it takes is just one negligent driver to cause a fatal accident. In these situations, it sometimes makes sense for family members to pursue wrongful death claims on behalf of their lost loved ones.

Police in a neighboring state spotted an SUV with severe damage and initiated a traffic stop. Before the driver of the SUV pulled over he was apparently having trouble staying within his own lane. Attending officers said that the 45-year-old claimed he had been sideswiped by another vehicle during a hit-and-run accident in West Virginia. However, the driver apparently seemed confused about the exact nature and place of the collision and appeared intoxicated.

Who is responsible for most motorcycle accident injuries?

Motorcycle riders tend to be passionate about their chosen form of transport, and the appeal might be easy to understand. Motorcycles may provide a sense of freedom and movement that most people in West Virginia simply do not feel when sitting behind the wheel of a larger motor vehicle. Unfortunately, it is drivers of those vehicles that are more likely to cause motorcycle accident injuries.

Those who ride motorcycles usually understand that they are at a higher risk for injury on the road. Not only are they more exposed than they would otherwise be in a passenger vehicle, but they are also smaller and sometimes more difficult to spot. Neither of these things excuse other drivers from acting negligently behind the wheel, though. Despite this, many still do.

Injured in a drunk driving wreck? You deserve help

Despite the existence of taxi cabs, various ride-sharing apps and campaigns that highlight the dangers of driving while impaired, people in West Virginia continue to get behind the wheel after having too much to drink. These individuals put you and everyone else on the road at serious risk for suffering injuries in an accident. Drunk driving wrecks are often serious or even fatal, leaving victims and/or their families in difficult situations. 

Car accidents are serious enough as it is, but add an intoxicated driver in the mix and you have a potentially deadly combination. These drivers tend to act recklessly and may travel at high rates of speed or fail to apply their brakes before impact, which can lead to severe injuries. You might already be familiar with some of these common injuries: 

  • Traumatic brain injuries 
  • Neck injuries 
  • Spinal cord damage 
  • Lacerations 
  • Broken and fractured bones 
  • Internal injuries or bleeding 

Criminal charges against West Virginia man after fatal accident

A West Virginia man is facing serious criminal charges after a fatal motorcycle accident. The accident took place in October, but the defendant was recently arraigned on charges of misdemeanor negligent homicide. If convicted, he could face penalties that include time behind bars and expensive fines. A conviction will also result in the revocation of the defendant's West Virginia driver's license.

When law enforcement initially responded to the fatal accident, they arrived on the scene to find a large black truck with a motorcycle stuck to the front of it. Evidence suggests that the motorcycle was on fire at some point, and the collision was severe enough to scatter various parts across the road. The man on the motorcycle was declared dead by emergency personnel at the scene of the accident.

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