Who’s at Fault in a Multi-Car Accident in Bristol, TN?

Tennessee personal injury attorney identifies responsible drivers in complex traffic collisions

Sometimes, traffic accidents involve more than two vehicles. When they do, it might be difficult to determine who caused the collision. In fact, it’s possible that more than one driver is at fault. If you’re injured in a multi-car accident, Massengill, Caldwell & Coughlin, P.C. in Bristol will work hard to identify all of the potential parties and hold them liable for your damages.

What is a multi-car collision?

Multiple vehicle collisions can occur in several ways. For instance, they may involve a pile-up, in which a chain reaction occurs where Car A is struck from behind by Car B and Car C cannot stop in time to avoid hitting Car B. There are also cases in which contact between two vehicles pushes one or both into another lane or oncoming traffic. There are also situations where several cars collide with a single obstacle. Several factors can cause multi-vehicle crashes, such as:

  • Vehicles following too closely
  • Poor visibility
  • Icy roads
  • Jack-knifing trucks and other out of control vehicles

Multi-car accidents are particularly likely on high-volume, high-speed highways, such as Interstate 81 or Tennessee State Route 394, and busy intersections, like Anderson and 7th Streets, State Street and the Volunteer Parkway, or Blountville Highway and US 11 West. We have decades of experience in handling complex auto accident cases if you’ve been hurt in a crash.

Determining liability in multi-car crashes

Deciding who is at fault and therefore legally responsible for a multi-vehicle accident might be a complex process. A pileup may begin with the lead driver suddenly stopping, but the drivers who rear-end the vehicles in front of them are often blamed for not stopping in time. On the other hand, if the lead driver swerved into the lane too quickly, they may be liable. Depending on the circumstances, therefore, one or several drivers might be liable. It is important to identify the proper sources of compensation for your damages. Our firm has the skill and experience to handle all types of multi-car accident claims, including situations where:

  • You and another driver say the other is at fault — If you only sue one driver and that driver claims that you also contributed to causing the accident, the jury must who is to blame. You can collect damages even if you are held to be partly responsible for the crash, as long as your percentage of the fault is not above 50 percent. Your award would be reduced by your percentage share of liability.  
  • More than one other driver is liable for your injuries — If you sue multiple drivers, the jury must determine the percentage of fault attributable to each party, including you. Assuming you aren’t more than 50 percent liable, you will be able to recover damages from each liable defendant in proportion to their share of the fault.
  • You are hurt as a rideshare passenger — If you are a passenger in an Uber or Lyft vehicle, you will almost certainly not be liable for the accident, and you might be able to recover damages from Uber’s or Lyft’s insurer.
  • A non-driver contributed to your injury — Sometimes, non-drivers might be to blame for the accident that injure you. This could occur if the accident is caused by defects in the road or the design or manufacture of a vehicle.

When we represent a multi-car accident victim, we identify and sue all potentially liable parties and build a case against them, while trying to minimize our own client’s exposure. We are ready to do the same for you.

When a driver suffers a medical emergency

Sometimes, a multi-car accident may occur because a driver suffered a medical emergency at the wheel, such as a heart attack. If the medical emergency was the result of an underlying condition the driver knew about, we can try to prove that the driver negligently caused the accident. More specifically, we would try to prove they breached a duty to protect others on the road by failing to take proper precautions.

What compensation can you get after a multi-car accident?

If one or more other parties negligently caused the accident that injured you, we will seek payment for compensable damages, such as:

  • Medical bills
  • Your lost earnings
  • Funeral and burial expenses if a family member died
  • Pain and suffering

We will seek compensation for all damages to which you are entitled.

Call a skilled Bristol multi-car accident lawyer for a free consultation

Massengill, Caldwell & Coughlin, P.C. has the experience and skill to help you if you’ve been injured in a multi-car accident. Call us today at 423-797-6022 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation. Our office is in Bristol, Tennessee.