Many serious car accident injuries happen as a result of a single-car accident. It only takes a split-second for a driver to make a miscalculation that causes her to lose control of her car and run off the road.
This appears to be what happened late Monday night in Giles County, Virginia. A female driver and three passengers were ejected from their vehicle when it rolled over on Route 460 in the Newport area. The 1994 Jeep Wrangler was traveling west on Route 460 near Alpine Road when the driver over-corrected and caused the Jeep to run off the side of the highway and overturn.
The 32-year-old driver died at the scene. The three passengers sustained life-threatening injuries and were transported to a nearby hospital.
A passenger is almost always helpless to prevent a car accident. Unless the passenger is actively distracting the driver – and there is no evidence of that in this accident – he is at the mercy of the driver’s skill and decision-making. These three passengers are fighting for their lives as a result of this accident and there was nothing they could do to prevent it.
Sometimes injured passengers are reluctant to file a claim against the driver when the driver is a friend, even if they have serious injuries and the driver was at-fault. I urge an injured passenger to understand that the claim is filed against the driver’s insurance, not the driver personally. After all, the very purpose of insurance is to protect the driver in the case of an accident. In fact, an injured passenger can still recover from the driver's insurance company even if the driver is deceased.
Car accidents take a toll on the injured victim, emotionally and monetarily. The victim doesn’t deserve to bear the burden of worrying about how to pay for the medical care he or she needs. A claim against the driver’s insurance company is not a reflection of the personal relationship with the driver. An experienced personal injury attorney can help assess the passenger’s claim and deal with the insurance company to reach a fair settlement. The driver is not involved in the negotiation process and may not even know about them. For more information, see our Frequently Asked Questions about car accident injuries.