Last month, a 50-car accident on Highway 198 between Lemoore and Hanford. The Hanford Sentinel reported on the multiple accidents that appear to be caused by poor weather conditions combined with speeding drivers.
According to Officer John Tyler, the first accident occurred around 8:25 a.m. near 16th Avenue on the westbound side of Highway 198. From that crash, a chain reaction of collisions took place that shut the highway down until 2:00 p.m. that afternoon. It was not one collision that shut down the highway but multiple collisions that resulted from traffic being stopped for the first collision. Officer Tyler said that more than 50 vehicles might have been involved in the collisions. Driving too fast for conditions was the reason for all the collisions per Officer Tyler.
Those who were injured were transported to hospitals for treatment, and 100 people were transported to Hanford Civic Auditorium to give statements to officers. For drivers, officers, and insurance companies, these collisions are likely to be a headache to sort out.
Who Is Responsible for Collisions Due to Weather?
In this case, a heavy fog was present that caused limited visibility. However, as Officer Tyler pointed out, “drivers need to slow down and use their headlights when driving in foggy conditions.” For most of these accidents, it is likely that the driver of the vehicle that rear-ended another vehicle will be charged with driving too fast for conditions.
Even though fog may have contributed to the collision, the driver who rear-ended another vehicle is at fault because that driver was traveling at an unsafe speed for the conditions. This might be the case even if the driver was not exceeding the speed limit. Speed limits are intended for perfect driving conditions. If anything changes the conditions, including poor weather, the driver should reduce the speed of the vehicle to avoid a collision.
Unfortunately, insurance companies like to point to the weather conditions as the reason for the accident to deny claims. It may be clear that the driver was traveling too fast for conditions, but the insurance company may still fight the claim, especially if the victim does not hire an attorney. The insurance adjuster may argue that the accident victim was not paying attention and slammed on the brakes at the last minute.
Whatever the reason, the insurance company will try anything to avoid paying a claim. Therefore, it is in your best interest to consult with a Fresno accident attorney as soon as possible after an accident. You should definitely consult an attorney before discussing your claim with an insurance adjuster for the other driver.
Call For Your Free Appointment With A Fresno Accident Attorney
We want you to have the legal counsel you need to protect your right to receive compensation for your injuries. Our Fresno accident attorneys offer free legal consultation and no-obligation case evaluations for accident victims and their families.
Call Torem & Associates at 1-800-954-4444 for your free appointment. You may also use our online contact form to contact our Fresno accident attorney for more information.